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NLM Reading Room Policy on Photography Requests

You may take a few pictures of the interior of the rooms as long as you:

  • Do not disturb other patrons or staff.
  • Use a hand-held camera.
  • Use only available light, no flash.

Members of the media or others who wish to film or take photographs for a commercial purpose must obtain the permission of NLM’s Office of Communications and Public Liaison.

Reading Room

In order to prevent damage to collection materials, you may use personal digital photographic equipment to photograph collection materials in the Reading Room only under the following conditions:

  • You must request permission and show the equipment you intend to use to Information desk staff before taking any photos.
  • You can only take pictures using available light. We do not permit using flash equipment or portable lighting. You may use tripods and other camera support devices as long as they do not inconvenience other patrons and staff.
  • Photographic equipment cannot come into direct contact with library materials. You cannot use personal hand-held or flatbed scanners.
  • If NLM staff determines that your photography is disruptive or harmful to the collection materials, we will ask you to stop.
  • Rare, damaged, or fragile items must be reviewed by the staff person on duty before you may scan or photograph them.
  • Permission to digitally photograph library material does not imply permission to publish or further reproduce the images. Responsibility for determination of copyright lies with you.

Last Reviewed: September 13, 2022