Searching for Images on Instagram

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Instagram is a social networking site focused on sharing images and video. Users can also record and share fifteen second videos. Because Instagram started out as a mobile app, the Web site actually feels a bit like an afterthought–with not very much functionality.

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By default, all photos posted to Instagram are public. Neither the mobile app nor the Web site offer a way to search by user name or keyword, but a number of third-party sites have sprung up to make Instagram content searchable.

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Currently, our favorite is GramFeed because it offers the widest array of search options, including:

  • Keyword
  • User name
  • Location (generally; e.g., New York, Chicago)
  • Places (more specific location; e.g., La Fonda in Santa Fe, NM)

Other third-parties that offer ways to search Instagram include Webstagram and Findgram, both of which allow you to search by user name or keyword; and WorldCam which allows you to search with a keyword and limit your results to a geographic location (e.g., John Deere C & F Building and Moline, IL).

Users can also make their accounts private, so that only people who follow them on Instagram will be able to see their photos. If they have made their profiles private, none of these third-party sites will be able to search Instagram.

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