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Instagram denies losing a quarter of its users

The photo-sharing service says it didn't lose a quarter of its users over Christmas, and the stats do look a little dodgy.

There's no doubt about it -- Instagram really annoyed many of its users when it changed its terms and conditions recently, giving itself the right to sell your photos to use in adverts without you seeing a penny. But what is in doubt is how many stroppy hipsters actually upped and left the service.

A report claimed the photo-sharing app saw a quarter of its latte-wielding customers flee over Christmas, but Instragram has denied it, Gizmodo reports.

The rumour came from a company called AppData, which tracks the stats of Instagram owners Facebook. AppData claimed the number of Instagram's "daily active users" dropped by 25 per cent over the last week, although Instagram denies this.

"This data is inaccurate," a company spokesperson told Gizmodo. "We continue to see strong and steady growth in both registered and active users of Instagram."

The issue seems to be that AppData's sample size is too small, accounting only for those who connect their Facebook and Instagram accounts. AppData's other stats say the number of Instagram's weekly and monthly users are on the rise. Monthly users are up from just over 40 million to around 45 million, for example.

Nevertheless, Facebook's stock took a pummelling over the rumour, dropping half a per cent.

Instagram hit the headlines just before Christmas, thanks to changes in its terms of service. It promptly U-turned, changing the wording, and claiming it didn't ever intend to sell your snaps to advertising companies. Honest.

It recently fell out with Twitter, too. Any Instagram snaps posted in tweets will show up as links, unless you use a workaround. Twitter has brought out its own filters to give your photos a hipster tinge, though they're not on a par with Instagram's, from the examples I've seen.

Did you turn your back on Instagram? What do you think of its change of policy? Let me know in the comments, or on Facebook.