Archiving Instagram: experiences and challenges

Hello all! I’ve been archiving Instagram recently, and would like to share some of what I’ve learned and achieved. I use the Webrecorder Desktop App, and begin in Preview mode. Preview mode enables you to log-in and navigate to the profile you’re interested in before you click to Start Capture. It’s necessary to log-in because Instagram has begun to limit the amount of content anonymous users can look at (i.e. the distance you can scroll and the number of posts you can expand). I’ve worked with Autopilot, but I am confident that the richest detail is achieved using manual capture. This way, I am able to capture all Stories, videos, images stacks, fully expanded comments and replies + tags.

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One unresolved challenge/issue is with replay of Stories. I’ve found that Stories are not (consistently) accessible when browsing via Webrecorder Player. This afternoon, I tested loading the same WARC into ReplayWeb.Page and noted that this remains an issue. In my experience, this issue doesn’t persist when browsing in the Webrecorder Desktop App, or when I loaded the WARC into Conifer.

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