Well Being

Are Restaurants Stealing Your #Foodstagrams?

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If we’re being honest, the only thing actually worth Instagramming is food. Not your new baby niece. Not your shiny new business card. And definitely not a selfie of you and your soon-to-be ex (we said we were being honest). What is worth Instagramming, though, is that delicious, positively drool-worthy burger from Shake Shack. Or your Chipotle burrito. Or really anything you can eat, because food is the only real thing caring about. Or documenting. Instagramming your food is a trend all on its own, these days.

Anyway, enough about food (just kidding, there’s NEVER enough about food. It’s clearly the most important thing in life. But I’ll digress for a minute). Let’s talk about stealing.

Apparently, artist Richard Prince has been printing giant screen shots of other people’s Instagram photos without asking (i.e., he stole them) and displaying them at the recent Frieze Art Fair in New York City. The collection of stolen #instafood is part of a larger collection made up of pictures of women that people have posted to Instagram — so it could be your sister, your mom, or your bestie Jill — which Prince then enlarged. And sold…for $90,000.

That’s right. Your seemingly-worthless Instagrams (except for those 35 ‘Likes) could be worth $90,000. The worst part is, somebody else could be cashing in on that revenue –just like Prince has done. Since Prince’s works are “transformative” — or, he made super slight adjustments to the images by removing captions and adding odd comments on each photo — he technically hasn’t committed copyright infringement. This means that restaurants could be using your latest Instagram post in future advertisements, as long as they “tweak” ’em. So the next time you want to Instagram your beautiful bacon, egg and cheese, or your #fitspiration healthy protein smoothie, you might want to think again…or at the very least, put your photos on private.

This raises a bunch of concerns, as we all post way too much and way too often on our Instagram accounts. But for now, I’m going to eat my food instead of Instagram it. I suggest you do the same.