Social Media and Digital Engagement at the National Archives

Citizen Contribution Policy

You are encouraged to contribute tags, transcriptions, and comments to both digital objects and archival descriptions in the National Archives Catalog. If you wish to contribute content, you agree to the following terms:

  • You will not add comments or tags that contain abusive, vulgar, offensive, threatening or harassing language; personal attacks of any kind; or offensive terms that target specific individuals or groups. NARA will remove contributions that contain this type of language.

    • If a historical document in the catalog contains such language, it should be transcribed accurately.

  • NARA will remove contributions that are clearly off-topic,that promote services or products, or that promote or oppose any political party, person campaigning for elected office, or any ballot proposition, unless these political promotions or oppositions are part of the historical documents.

  • NARA will remove contributions with personally identifiable information not related to the historical document such as social security numbers, addresses, and telephone numbers. If a document contains archival or historical personally identifiable information, it may be transcribed. Also, the names of individuals identified in photographs and general geographic information, such as where the photo was taken, are permitted.

  • Contributions provided in no way constitute a legal or official notice to NARA or any official or employee of NARA for any purpose.

  • Contributions may be treated as a federal record.

  • Gratuitous links to sites are viewed as spam and may result in the comment being removed.

  • The content of all contributions are visible to the public, thus submissions should not contain anything you do not wish to broadcast to the general public.

  • NARA does not discriminate against any views, but reserves the right not to post content that does not adhere to these standards.

  • By contributing transcriptions to the online catalog you accept that other users may edit, alter, or remove your contribution.

  • By transcribing a document, you agree that you will not assert or retain any intellectual property rights, including copyright of the transcription.

  • If you think any of the information in the catalog is subject to a valid copyright claim, please contact us at catalog@nara.gov .

  • When transcribing records, make a good faith effort to accurately represent the information contained in the record. If a document or record is not legible in some parts, please indicate with “[illegible].” Please consult the Transcription Tips for more information.

  • Contributions by NARA staff will be identified on the catalog by displaying their first and last name followed by “(NARA Staff)” — e.g. John Smith (NARA Staff)

  • NARA reserves the right to deactivate the accounts of individuals that repeatedly violate the terms outlined in this policy.

  • Members of the media are asked to pose your questions to the NARA Public Affairs Office through their normal channels and to refrain from submitting questions here as comments. Media questions or comments may be removed. NARA Public Affairs can be reached at 202-357-5300

If you have any questions or experience issues while contributing tags or transcriptions, please email catalog@nara.gov.

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