Instagram Blocking ‘Add Me’ Links to Snapchat, Telegram

By David Cohen Comment


Instagram is blocking the use of “add me” links to messaging platforms including Snapchat and Telegram on users’ profile pages.

Natasha Lomas of TechCrunch was the first to report on the move, and an Instagram spokesman confirmed the action, telling Lomas:

We’ve removed the ability to include “add me” links on Instagram profile pages. This was a rare use-case, and not the way our platform was intended to be used. Other types of links are still allowed.

Telegram is no stranger to this sort of behavior by Facebook-owned applications, as links to Telegram on WhatsApp have been appearing as plain text since November, not allowing WhatsApp users to click through.

Telegram founder Pavel Durov said in a message to TechCrunch that deep-linking to other social networks–including LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, VK and Periscope—is still functional, adding:

It seems Instagram started to block links to Telegram accounts and channels (like from their website section (i.e., the only place on Instagram where you can have clickable links).

Like in (the) case with WhatsApp blocking links to Telegram, we received no clarification or warning from Facebook/Instagram.

Lomas pointed out that Instagram’s terms of use does not contain language preventing the use of “add me” deep links:

There may be links from the service, or from communications you receive from the service, to third-party websites or features. There may also be links to third-party websites or features in images or comments within the service. The service also includes third-party content that we do not control, maintain or endorse. Functionality on the service may also permit interactions between the service and a third-party website or feature, including apps that connect the service or your profile on the service with a third-party website or feature. For example, the service may include a feature that enables you to share content from the service or your content with a third party, which may be publicly posted on that third party’s service or app. Using this functionality typically requires you to login to your account on the third-party service, and you do so at your own risk. Instagram does not control any of these third-party Web services or any of their content. You expressly acknowledge and agree that Instagram is in no way responsible or liable for any such third-party services or features.

Readers: What are your thoughts on Instagram’s move to block “add me” deep links from Snapchat and Telegram?

Screenshot of Pavel Durov’s Instagram website section courtesy of TechCrunch.