The war between Instagram and Twitter heated up when Instagram stopped allowing its photos to be integrated to Twitter Cards last week. Now it has gotten even hotter, with Instagram suddently removing its photos from Twitter completely.
It was only five days ago when Instagram removed the ability for pictures to be integrated into Twitter Cards, meaning that the pictures would no longer fit in the allotted window, and would appear cropped. That same day, it was reported that Instagram founder and CEO Kevin Systrom said at LeWeb 12 that photos would eventually will not show up in tweets at all, and instead will link back to Instagram.com.
I guess I assumed that Systrom meant that Instagram pictures would, at some point, no longer appear. Perhaps even a few months down the road. But that day has now come less a week later, according to a blogpost put up by Twitter on Sunday.
“Instagram has disabled photo integration with Twitter. As a result, photos are no longer appearing in Tweets or user photo galleries. While tweeting links to Instagram photos is still possible, you can no longer view the photos on Twitter, as was previously the case,” Twitter wrote.
Twitter and Instagram could not be reached for comment.
That Instagram would pulls photos off of Twitter is probably a good move overall for the photo sharing company. First of all, Instragam has been building up a web presence, announcing in November that it would be creating Web profiles for each one of its users, as well as Instagram badges the profiles. It wants traffic going to its site, not to Twitter.
Second of all, Instagram is owned by Twitter’s biggest rival, Facebook, which also has no interest in seeing traffic go up for Twitter.
Instagram probably doesn't think it has much to worry about by taking its content off a popular platform.
In a conference call after Facebook's most recent earnings report, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg called Instagram "a platform success story.”
Instagram had 27 million registered users when it was purchased, he said, and it now has 100 million. Zuckerberg said that more mobile time spent on instagram than on Twitter.
Twitter, for its part, is not taking the news lying down: It was first revealed in November that Twitter was going to launch filters on its camera app in the next few months, essentially ripping off Instagram’s idea. Now that Instagram has taken this action against the social network, efforts seem to have been ramped up, as it was reported by AllThingsD on Saturday that Twitter is hoping to release its own version of camera filters before the end of the month, just in time for the holiday season.
Perhaps it is going to to try to match the 200 photos put up on Instagram every second during this Thanksgiving. Over 10 million photos were shared altogether.
I'd love to know how much, if at all Twitter's attempt to copy Instagram's entire concept factored into the decision to remove the photos, and how badly Twitter now wishes it had made this (slightly NSFW) video:
(Image source: http://www.roxxstudiodesign.com)