Instagram founder Kevin Systrom
Instagram is finally starting to get serious with other apps and services that use its trademark.
In an update to its brand guidelines, the Facebook-owned photo/video sharing app has tightened its rules for other apps and services that feature the words "Insta" or "Gram" in their names.
TechCrunch points out that Instagram is getting more specific with how its lets others use its name.
To remedy this issue, Instagram has sent out emails to apps and companies that violate its new policy. The emails request that companies change these components "within a reasonable period."
One example of a company that violates Instagram's new policy is Luxogram. Despite serving nearly 1 million users a month, TechCrunch says that, "t he two new points that Instagram indicates that Luxogram is treading on are the fact that it uses “gram” in its name, and that (a highly customized variant of) the camera logo is being used."
Tthe full list of Instagram's new "don't" guidelines going forward basically encourages other apps to not use the Instagram brand in a way that implies partnership, sponsorship, or endorsements. It also doesn't want other services using any part of the brand with their name, marks, designs, or generic terms.
If you're copying the Instagram look and feel that's also frowned upon.
The sudden change comes as a surprise to some because previously Instagram encouraged other platforms to take advantage of the same "Insta" and "Gram" terms, it just didn't want them used together. Instagram did this intentionally because it was a great way for the service to grow and reach more users.
Instagram's new policy is strangely similar to Twitter. The micro-blogging network completely revamped its developer guidelines in a similar fashion last year, restricting a ton of apps and services that relied on the once open platform.
More From Business Insider