This article's claim (even stated in the title) is not that Instagram should have charged, but that users should demand to pay. The article is not written for Instagram: it is written for users.
> Truly, the only way to get around the privacy problems inherent in advertising-supported social networks is to pay for services that we value. It's amazing what power we gain in becoming paying customers instead of the product being sold.
People have a hard time paying for parking space, yet some claim those same people should demand paying for the ability to upload a small file to the internet. I don't think anybody outside of the tech bubble treats such advice seriously.
I was curious if somebody will bring this title to the table as I've found this book some time ago on Goodreads, but frankly, 800p about this subject is a TLDR for me.
My point was, while I think people should be comfortable paying for services, claiming they should demand to pay instead of getting it free is a bit absurd. It's not like there are no paid more feature-rich alternatives for uploading photos, or that web users just don't pay for online; it's just that Instagram, Twitter & co wouldn't grow to those numbers if they were a paid service. Prove me wrong, but I also got the feeling Pinboard users are there for the statement, not because they believe bookmarking links is worth $10.
<- ...were users to like paying for such things or even demand to do so (which they aren't, hence why this article was written at all, but this is a cool universe in which we could live: imagine it!)...