1st January 2015 by aegeuana_sjp_admin

Real time Instagram API with Django

This is a quick tutorial on howto use the Instagram API with Django. We will be tracking a specific hashtag in real time and receiving the notifications from Instagram API to our defined endpoint.

Python Instagram package

Install the python Instagram package through pip, this is the official supported python bindings for Instagram API.
[code lang=”python”]
pip install python-instagram

Register a Developer account

You will need to register with Instagram even if your sole intention is to use their API, you still need to have a valid account. Currently the only way of registering an account is through the mobile applications, the website is not allowing to register for Instagram.
Once registered you will need to create an application in your developer account, this will give you a CLIENT_ID and CLIENT_SECRET which will be used to interact with the API.
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Pubsubhubub and Real time API

The instagram realtime API follows the Pubsubhubub protocol, the idea is that you have subscriptions and once there are events you will receive a push notification, in this case it would be a HTTP post request to our server.
You can read more about the real time API

Django and Pubsubhubub Subscription

The following code is a basic implementation of the real time Instagram API handler, as discussed previously the Instagram API uses the Pubsubhubub protocol, you first need to setup the handlers then subscribe for events, once everything is done you should start receiving events
Your should look like this
[code lang=”python”]
url(r’^realtime_callback$’, ‘myapp.views.realtime_callback’),
And your your should look like this
[code lang=”python”]
from django.http import HttpResponse
from django.views.decorators.csrf import csrf_exempt
from instagram import subscriptions
def process_tag_update(update):
print ‘Received a push: ‘, update
reactor = subscriptions.SubscriptionsReactor()
reactor.register_callback(subscriptions.SubscriptionType.TAG, process_tag_update)
def realtime_callback(request):
# GET method is used when validating the endpoint as per the Pubsubhubub protocol
if request.method == ‘GET’:
mode = request.GET.get(‘hub.mode’)
challenge = request.GET.get(‘hub.challenge’)
verify_token = request.GET.get(‘hub.verify_token’)
if challenge:
return HttpResponse(challenge)
# POST event is used to for the events notifications
x_hub_signature = request.META.get(‘HTTP_X_HUB_SIGNATURE’, ”)
raw_response = request.body
reactor.process(settings.INSTAGRAM_CLIENT_SECRET, raw_response, x_hub_signature)
except subscriptions.SubscriptionVerifyError:
print ‘Signature mismatch’
return HttpResponse(”)

Hashtag subscription

Finally let’s subscribe to the Instagram real time API and start receiving events for given hashtag, you only need to subscribe once so make sure you just run this code in the Django’s shell ( shell) rather than in your
Use the previously generated CLIENT_ID and CLIENT_SECRET, in this case we are subscribing to any picture tagged with a hashtag #paris
[code lang=”python”]
from instagram.client import InstagramAPI
api = InstagramAPI(client_id=’YOUR_CLIENT_ID’, client_secret=’YOUR_CLIENT_SECRET’)
api.create_subscription(object=’tag’, object_id=’paris’, aspect=’media’, callback_url=’’)
Hopefully this should give you enough playground to start using the Instagram’s real time API!

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