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apple pulls store app watching instagram

tarekma7Apple pulls Instagram-watching app from store
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Quote:Apple has yanked an app from its iTunes App Store that allowed Instagram users to follow their friends’ activities on the social network.

Apple removed Like Patrol from its store last weekend citing a violation of its data collection policies. Apple didn’t return requests for comment, but the app showed up as unavailable for Canadian users of the store.

Like Patrol charged users a reported $80 each year to give them access to their Instagram friends’ activities on the platform. It promised to show them detailed information about what people were doing on Instagram, including which posts they were liking, and from whom. They could also reportedly get notifications of a person’s interaction with users of specific genders, and none of this information required the consent of the person being monitored.

The banner on the app’s website, which is still up at the time of writing, reads:

New guy? New girl? What are they up to on Instagram? With Like Patrol you can see the posts they specifically like!

The app appears to work by scraping data that is publicly available via the Instagram API, but while its creators worked to capitalise on that data, Facebook-owned Instagram appeared to be moving in the other direction by restricting access to information about other users on its site.

In October 2019, it removed a ‘following activity’ tab that showed peoples’ likes, comments, and follows in a separate tab. People rarely clicked on it and were disconcerted when they found out that their Instagram friends could see their activity in such detail, the company said at the time.


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