Instagram is looking to slim down its Application Program Interface. Part of that slimming effort includes the exclusion of support for apps' access on Instagram feeds, leaving the third-party apps that once fed out that information, out to starve.
Instagram is about to start reviewing new and current apps, starting on Dec. 3. The owners of existing apps will have to submit their software before June 1, 2016. June 1 is also an important date because that's when Instagram will close off the connection to feeds.
"We've heard from the community that it can be unclear where their content is being shared and viewed, so today we are deprecating the /users/self/feed and /media/popular API endpoints for new apps. Existing apps will have until the end of the review period before access to the endpoints is terminated," says Instagram.
While saying it gives the developers and consumers more control, it's also making the Instagram apps focus on photo editing, the few that connect to feeds have the potential to be used maliciously. Simply put, they mine data and build profiles on the things people post.
For now, it's just the feed eating apps that have to go. The third-party apps for photo editing aren't having the rug pulled from under them. They just have to prove their worth before next June.
Along with updating its API, Instagram also "simplified" its platform policy. It did so to better state the use cases it will support. Those use cases, which include helping people share their content via third-party apps, enable brands and advertisers to better engage their audiences and empower broadcaster and publishers to disseminate information more effectively.
"Our goal is to provide a focused set of terms and processes that give clarity to the use cases we will support going forward," Instagram says. "While this may require changes from many of you, we believe these changes will help maintain control for the community and provide a clear roadmap for developers."