Updated: Why I have stopped my daughter using Snapchat

See update at bottom of this post! 

Being a bit of a geek, I certainly understand the value of social networks but have until recently stopped my youngest daughter from having access to them.  Ok she has a twitter account but does not use it, and it is only used by myself to tag her in the occasional tweet that she can then look back on in years to come.

Over the summer we had a discussion about the little geek being allowed to use Snapchat, and following a long discussion and showing her how to use it we agreed and continued to check her use of it regularly.  Even though the terms of service state its for children over age 13 I thought it was appropriate for her.

Only family and close friends were added and it has been a great way of keeping in touch with the little geek whilst I am away with work, or just generally for a laugh.  But tonight I learned of some changes to its terms of service which as a parent and user of Snapchat make me feel some what uncomfortable. 

The Telegraph posted this article on 30th October, which stated that the app now owns every single photo taken on the app and will be storing them.

Whilst I don't think that is totally true, the terms of service, which can be read here does state that:

Many of our Services let you create, upload, post, send, receive, and store content. When you do that, you retain whatever ownership rights in that content you had to begin with.
But you grant Snapchat a worldwide, perpetual, royalty-free, sublicensable, and transferable license to host, store, use, display, reproduce, modify, adapt, edit, publish, create derivative works from, publicly perform, broadcast, distribute, syndicate, promote, exhibit, and publicly display that content in any form and in any and all media or distribution methods (now known or later developed). We will use this license for the limited purpose of operating, developing, providing, promoting, and improving the Services; researching and developing new ones; and making content submitted through the Services available to our business partners for syndication, broadcast, distribution, or publication outside the Services. Some Services offer you tools to control who can—and cannot—see your content under this license

For me this is a game changer as in effect her image could be used for anything and we would have no control over who uses it and for what for! 

This maybe of concern to other users and I am even considering if I should continue to use it!

Anyway watch this space as I am sure that I will not be the only user who is unhappy with this change! 

Update 3/11/15:

Snapchat have now clarified what the amendment to the privacy policy and terms of service meant and I urge you to read their blog post, but in summary they stated:

First off, we want to be crystal clear: The Snaps and Chats you send your friends remain as private today as they were before the update. Our Privacy Policy continues to say—as it did before—that those messages “are automatically deleted from our servers once we detect that they have been viewed or have expired.” Of course, a recipient can always screenshot or save your Snaps or Chats. But the important point is that Snapchat is not—and never has been—stockpiling your private Snaps or Chats. And because we continue to delete them from our servers as soon as they’re read, we could not—and do not—share them with advertisers or business partners. 

For now I will probably allow the little geek to start using the app again!  If I find out anymore concerns I will let you know!!  But for now happy snapping folks, it really is a great app, if you want to join me my username is dadyougeek