Yale University Policy: Open Access to Digital Representations of Works in the Public Domain from Museum, Library, and Archive Collections (2011)

General Principle:

The preservation, transmission, and advancement of knowledge in the digital age are promoted by the creative use and reuse of digitized content for research, teaching, learning, and creative activities. The goal of digitization is to enhance access to the collections in Yale’s museums, archives, and libraries for students, faculty, and the world. To this end, Yale will make digital copies of unrestricted public domain collections available for use without limitations through the University’s electronic interfaces.


Yale University fully supports the protection of intellectual property and is committed to complying with and strictly adhering to all applicable copyright law.


Yale University respects the right to privacy of individuals and groups and is committed to complying with and strictly adhering to all applicable legal requirements in protecting that privacy.

Donor Restriction:

Yale University is committed to strictly adhering to provisions embodied in agreements with donors of collections.

Other Restrictions:

Yale University is sensitive to social and religious customs and requirements that may limit access to some works in its collections, and may, in its own discretion, restrict access accordingly.

Yale Marks/Name:

The use of the Yale name or trademarks for any purpose – other than standard source citation (see Acknowledgement below) – requires Yale’s prior approval.


Users are asked to attribute the work in the manner specified by the applicable museum, library, or archive guidelines, without suggestion of endorsement.