The reach of Instagram continues to surprise me. At work our annual report this year showed a massive increase in the audience and, when I was provided with a mobile phone, I was encouraged to use the service to promote our activities.

This week I was surprised to discover the local newspaper had used a couple of images from my personal account on their website. These were attributed to my account name, yet it felt like a violation of sorts -- particularly the pic of my daughter. So I've set my account to private.

A friend tells me that Instagram's fine print for using the service includes claiming copyright of all images uploaded and potentially profiting from their use as stock photos. So I guess I'm lucky the media gave me any credit, especially since they haven't when I've sent them photos in the past. Then again, I've used their images occasionally without attribution too, which is a violation of copyright I believe.

Anyway, the practice of old media collecting material off social media to re-package as their own content is the beginning of the end for journalists. Since they've been re-writing media releases and given up researching stories, they're now going to be replaced by automated content.

The question is how long before the readers that pay for this content realise that they're also supplying it?