Cloning a successful company isn’t a bad idea.
After all Burger King and Samsung annually make hundreds of millions of dollars (if not billions) copying McDonalds and Apple, respectively.
But if all you are is a clone then why should anyone use your service beyond the fact that a different set of people command the corporate ship?
Simply having a better terms of service isn’t enough (as those can change at a moments notice), or being open sourced/a protocol isn’t enough either (as that doesn’t imply a better product).
I honestly don’t care if a service is owned by Apple, Google or even Facebook (despite my massive aversion to the latter due to their Sponsored Stories rather than the privacy fiascos).
If it fulfills a need, is high quality and is affordable then I will use it.
I left Flickr for Instagram because Instagram provided a simpler and faster way to upload and share photos online with friends (as did many others making Instagram the new standard).
I left YouTube for Vimeo because Vimeo provided superior control for displaying videos online without breaking the bank (yes, I’m willing to pay a small fee for quality).
I left hotmail/yahoo mail for Gmail ages ago because the latter hates spam like I hate zombies and provides far more features (and yes I pay Google here too).
I left Google Docs for Evernote because Evernote made it easier to create notes on the go without sacrificing on power.
I left WordPress for Tumblr on my personal blog as Tumblr encourages me to create content (which really is the whole point of blogging).
Instagram and Twitter are not going away any time soon because no one has built a better service–yet.
Instead of trash talking against the current standard, these Tweetgram rivals need to outperform them and let their work speak for them instead.
After all there is more to Instagram and Twitter than filtered photos and witty character counts, respectively.
Note: Usually the best way to challenge the status quo is to do something different (but better).
App.net focused on creating a developer friendly premium status network that while Google+ focused on making it easier to privately communicate with like minded people.