While bloggers everywhere rejoiced about being able to embed Instagram photos to share content, what will prevent photos and videos from being used by others? Nothing. The Instagram embed code feature makes anything publicly shared (which is practically everything if you’re a blogger) fair game.
As fellow Babble Tech writer, Terrance Gaines, outlined in his Instagram Embed Code Makes it Easy to Share Photos and Videos post, sharing is a mere click away. Copying an embed code of a publicly shared image or video allows anyone to grab the content and share it on their site. While HTML for the embed code automatically includes a link to your Instagram account and the image or video appears with your Instagram username and avatar in the upper left corner, there’s no trackback to show where your photos are being shared.
Most bloggers set up Google Alerts to notify them when their name, URL, or other identifying information appears on sites but it doesn’t look like a Google Alert will pick up an embedded Instagram. The HTML doesn’t include any identifying information that links a user’s account back to their name. There’s not even a standard identification number that’s part of the account that could be tracked.
- Comply with any requirements or restrictions imposed on usage of the photos by their respective owners. Remember, Instagram doesn’t own the images – Instagram users do
- Comply with any other terms and conditions a user has attached to his or her photo. For example, if a user marks a photo as “private” after using your service, your application must reflect those changes as soon as reasonably possible.
- Remove from your application within 24 hours any Instagram user’s photos or other information that the owner of the photo asks you to remove.
This is certainly one of those double-edge-sword situations since having a way to easily embed is convenient for content creators but perhaps too easy for others. There’s a difference between sharing content publicly and having it available for public consumption where it can be embedded anywhere. Users who don’t want their content available to be embedded can switch their accounts to private which will prohibit others from sharing their content, even if it was public previously. Otherwise, the best advice is to Instagram while remembering that all photos and videos that are public are fair game for others to embed on the sites of their choice.