While scrolling through Instagram this morning, I discovered a 2007 picture of my very own baby girl, Isis, three and a half months old, with a soccer ball in her mouth. Normally I would be thrilled that The German Shepherd World reposted my photo, since that’s entirely what the feed does. Except… I’ve never shared this picture on Instagram, and it was credited it to someone else who has a private Instagram account.
I stared at the photo on my phone, sure it was my photo of my dog, but had this iota of doubt. Like, could it be someone else’s dog in the snow with a ball in her mouth? Wearing a pink collar like hers, with what seems to be a small black tag like hers, and bushes in the background that resemble mine? When I got to work, I found the original, and tracked down a couple of blog posts where I had shared it, and asked The German Shepherd World to correct the credit in their post (and make it up to me by telling their 42,800 followers about my book, which all German shepherd people should read).
I haven’t heard back yet, but in the meantime, in the spirit of this unwitting Internet Sensation, I doctored my own photo.
Because creating a silly meme is the only defensible reason to steal someone else’s photo.
UPDATE 10/21: The German Shepherd World has corrected the photo credit on Instagram. The woman who was originally credited tells me her 10-year-old daughter sent the photo in, with proper attribution, and didn’t mean to take credit. Which doesn’t explain where she found the photo or why she’s sending other people’s photos to a third party.
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