Instagram isn’t planning to charge a fee to put links in captions

Technology

A patent application showed a pop-up that asks for a payment when a link is added to a caption

Despite what a recent patent application suggests, Instagram says it has no plans to add links to photo captions. The patent application was uncovered by Mike Murphy, in his weekly roundup of tech patents over at Protocol.

Instagram parent company Facebook first submitted the patent application back in 2016, which shows a pop-up appearing when the user adds a URL to a caption, asking if the user wants to pay $2 to make the link live.

The patent application (titled “adding paid links to media captions in a social networking system”) describes how the system would work: “If the online system detects the text content of the caption includes a string of link text identifying an address, the online system prompts the posting user to pay a fee in exchange for generating a link.”

This, of course, has long been one of the biggest complaints about Instagram: that if you want to include a link to a story, product, or anything else in your post you can’t add URLs to captions of photos. Most people go the “link in bio” route, and verified Insta users can add links to Stories.

But paid links won’t appear in Instagram captions any time soon, a company spokesperson says. “We have no plans of introducing this functionality on Instagram,” the spokesperson said in an email to The Verge.