Instagram Won’t Back Off App Aimed at Tidying English Countryside


Kent countryside

A construction firm manager in southeastern England who designed a free mobile application to keep his country free of litter has been hit with a demand from social media giant Instagram to change its name.

Danny Lucas, creator of LitterGram, has been given an ultimatum to change his app’s name or face a trademark infringement claim from Instagram, according to Kent Online, a news site operated by KM Group, a multimedia company in England’s county of Kent.

KM Group reported in July that LitterGram was launched to let users take pictures of litter and instantly send them to local government so cleanup crews could be dispatched to take care of the problem.

The app got an initial round of publicity when Facebook—Instagram’s owner—objected to its name. But Lucas thought the publicity had prompted Instagram to back off, as long as he didn’t apply for a trademark registration, KM Online said. He was first approached by Instagram’s lawyers after trying to get a trademark in 2015, it said.

But now, KM Online reports that Lucas has received a letter from a law firm stating that Instagram is going to insist on a name change after all.