I’ve been playing around more with Instagram lately. As usual, I’m intentionally late to the party, because I tend to be cautious and like to read up on things and wait for bugs and flaws to be uncovered first. It’s been more than long enough now, so I’m finally diving in.
With anything involving photography, I rarely take pictures at home. The geolocational information in the metadata worries me, and I don’t trust myself to remember to strip it or turn of the settings before shooting…as I did the other night when my dog did something cute and I decided to use Instagram and post it on the spot. Luckily, I noticed a minute later when looking at a map of recent posts and fixed it.
The problem isn’t metadata; it’s us. We are either too lazy or too concerned with connecting to take steps like turning off location information for one picture. While the safety hazards of saving that information can be slim–and in many cases help more than they harm– strangers can piece together maps of our common stomping grounds and when we’re likely to be there (or not be there) based on that information, which can be turned off in one click or removed after the fact if you forget.
Don’t live your life in fear of these what-ifs, but don’t chance it, either. Know where your location settings are in-app AND on your phone or tablet and use them.