Jack Dorsey Deletes His Instagram Account: Who Will Get the @Jack Handle?

Jack Dorsey is done with Instagram.

The Twitter co-founder deleted his Instagram account this week after years of inactivity, TechCrunch reports.

“Don’t know why it took me so long,” he wrote in a post on Nostr, a decentralized social media platform where he first made the announcement on Aug. 17. “Who will they give the @jack handle to?” he tweeted a day later.

It remains to be seen which “Jack” Instagram deems to be most deserving of the handle, or if it will refrain from redistributing the name. The instagram.com/jack profile page currently serves up an error message that says “Sorry, this page isn’t available.”

Meta didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. In its Help Center, Instagram notes that it can take up to 90 days to complete an account deletion. It also says “After your account is deleted, you can sign up again with the same username or add that username to another account as long as it hasn’t been taken by a new person on Instagram.”

One-name or one-word handles have sold on third-party websites for as much as $40,000 in the past, the New York Times reports. Like website domain names, some of which have sold for millions of dollars, a one-word username signals early adopter status, or the idea of being the “original” account holder. Dorsey says he was likely one of the first 10 accounts on Instagram, and one of the company’s first angel investors.

However, Instagram strictly prohibits the sale of usernames in its Terms of Use: “You can’t sell, license, or purchase any account or data obtained from us or our Service. This includes attempts to buy, sell, or transfer any aspect of your account (including your username).” The company is relatively strict about it, and says its policy also prohibits even requesting another person’s username or collecting usernames.

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Dorsey’s departure from Instagram comes shortly after the social network’s parent company Meta launched its own Twitter competitor, Threads. In response to Dorsey’s tweet about deleting his Instagram account, one user asked if he has Facebook. “No. Or WhatsApp. clear eyes, meta free, can’t lose,” Dorsey responded.

Twitter’s new owner, Elon Musk, who has since rebranded the company as X, recently seized the @X handle from someone who’d had it since 2007. He responded to Dorsey’s Instagram news with a fire emoji.

Since stepping down as Twitter CEO in 2021, Dorsey has championed decentralized social apps like Nostr, while also backing the Twitter-like Bluesky Social.

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