U.S. Code of Federal Regulations

Regulations most recently checked for updates: Jan 23, 2020

§ 1237.28 - What special concerns apply to digital photographs?

Digital photographs, either originating in digital form (“born-digital”) or scanned from photographic prints, slides, and negatives, are subject to the provisions of this part and the requirements of 36 CFR part 1236, and NARA guidance for transfer of digital photographs located on the following NARA Web page - http://www.archives.gov/records-mgmt/initiatives/digital-photo-records.html. In managing digital photographs, agency and contractor personnel must:

(a) Schedule digital photographs and related databases as soon as possible for the minimum time needed for agency business and transfer the records promptly according to the disposition instructions on their records schedule.

(b) Select image management software and hardware tools that will meet long-term archival requirements, including transfer to the National Archives of the United States, as well as business needs. Request additional information and assistance from NARA, by mail at National Archives and Records Administration; Special Media Records Division (RDS); 8601 Adelphi Road; College Park, MD 20740-6001, or by email at [email protected]

(c) When developing digital image storage strategies, build redundancy into storage systems, backing up image files through on-line approaches, off-line, or combinations of the two. (See also electronic storage requirements in § 1236.28 of this subchapter).

(d) For scanned digital images of photographic prints, slides, and negatives that are scheduled as permanent or unscheduled, document the quality control inspection process employed during scanning.

(1) Visually inspect a sample of the images for defects, evaluate the accuracy of finding aids, and verify file header information and file name integrity.

(2) Conduct the sample using a volume sufficiently large to yield statistically valid results, in accordance with one of the quality sampling methods presented in ANSI/AIIM TR34 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3). (See also ISO 2859-1 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3).)

(e) For born-digital images scheduled as permanent, long-term temporary, or unscheduled, perform periodic inspections, using sampling methods or more comprehensive verification systems (e.g., checksum programs), to evaluate image file stability, documentation quality, and finding aid reliability. Agencies must also establish procedures for refreshing digital data (recopying) and file migration, especially for images and databases retained for five years or more.

(f) Designate a record set of images that is maintained separately from other versions. Record sets of permanent or unscheduled images that have already been compressed once (e.g., compressed TIFF or first-generation JPEG) must not be subjected to further changes in image size.

(g) Organize record images in logical series. Group permanent digital images separately from temporary digital images.

(h) Document information about digital photographic images as they are produced. For permanent or unscheduled images descriptive elements must include:

(1) An identification number;

(2) Information about image content;

(3) Identity and organizational affiliation of the photographer;

(4) Existence of any copyright or other potential restrictions on image use; and

(5) Technical data including file format and version, bit depth, image size, camera make and model, compression method and level, custom or generic color profiles (ICC/ICM profile), and, where applicable, Exchangeable Image File Format (EXIF) information embedded in the header of image files by certain digital cameras.

(i) Provide a unique file name to identify the digital image.

(j) Develop finding aids sufficiently detailed to ensure efficient and accurate retrieval. Ensure that indexes, caption lists, and assignment logs can be used to identify and chronologically cut-off block of images for transfer to the NARA.

[74 FR 51014, Oct. 2, 2009, as amended at 83 FR 13657, Mar. 30, 2018]