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Digital Files for Editorial, Commercial, and Other Uses


Updated October 7, 2016 

Our policy regarding public domain material in Digital Collections has changed. Patrons can now download select files marked “No Known U.S. Copyright” in the highest resolution the Library has to offer. No request forms. No fees. Images can now be used, reused and shared commercially and otherwise. Please note, items may be still subject to rights of privacy, rights of publicity, and other restrictions. Though not required, if you want to credit us, cite “From The New York Public Library” and link back to the item in Digital Collections. This helps us track how our collection is being used and helps justify freely releasing even more content in the future.

To obtain high resolution TIFF files for all other images (including images/pages from microfilm), please see instructions below for requesting new photography or existing files.

Contact us at or 212-930-0091 if you have any questions.


  • Complete and submit the PERMISSIONS ORDER FORM (online or pdf).
  • Consult the fee schedules below.
  • Images found online in NYPL's Digital Collections have existing high resolution TIFF files available. Please include the Image ID number. and NOT the b number or UUID number
  • For items requiring new digital photography, special handling surcharges of $50.00 per image are affixed on top of fees posted below for any oversized item; or any item deemed to require special camera set-ups.
  • Prepayment is required. Credit card (VISA/MC and American Express), check drawn on a U.S. bank, or money order are accepted. Bank transfers are no longer accepted.
  • Partial refunds (less admin. fee of $50 per image for previously digitized and $75 for new digital photography) are given for non-use of NYPL copyright-held items licensed. Rush fees and special handling fees are non-refundable.
  • No refunds or exchanges are given for purchase of images that NYPL does not hold/manage copyright.

Rush service is not available from the Berg Collection .

Fee Schedule 1:

Images NYPL Does Not Hold/Manage Copyright

Fee Schedule below lists one-time fees per image to access high resolution TIFF files. There are no usage restrictions or limitations put on these images. If item(s) in copyright, written clearance from a rights holder is required before the Library will proceed in processing. The Library will provide a receipt with citation and credit lines. The Library will not issue or sign written "permission" or "licensing" agreements for these images. NYPL permission is not required for any re-uses or additional uses.


Existing TIFF File *

New Digital Photography
Nonprofit/Academic Authors
$50 $50
Commercial Trade or Textbook Authors** $100 $100

Nonprofits/Museums/Government Agencies
Commercial Architect/Construction Firms  (Research use)

TV Newscasts

$100 $150
Commercial Magazines/Newspapers $200 $250

Advertising Agencies
Merchandising/Marketing/Branding Companies

Theatrical Motion Pictures (non-Documentaries)

$400 $450
Commercial Publishers and All Other Commerical Organizations $250 $350

*There is a $100 surcharge on top of fees posted to re-scan images already digitized to create larger files. Turnaround is 4 weeks. Surcharge of $200 on top of fees posted for a 2 week turnaround.

**Fee charged to author only. Commercial publishers please refer to All Other Commercial Organizations or Commercial Textbook Publishers.

For any questions about use, please contact us directly.

Fee Schedule 2:

Images NYPL Does Hold/Manage Copyright

NYPL holds/controls copyright for such photographers as Percy Loomis Sperr, Kay Tobin, Diana Davies, Martha Swope, Vandamm Studio, Friedman-Abeles, White Studio, Walter Silver, etc. Please scroll down to bottom of page to access link to complete list of images/collections the Library holds or manages copyright. 

Fee schedule below lists one-time licensing fees per image based on usage and includes obtaining a high resolution TIFF file. The Library will issue a written licensing agreement restricting usage to requested project and will provide citations and credit lines. Written permission and additional licensing fees will be required for any re-use.

Higher fees apply for photos by Martha Swope. Please contact Permissions for price quote.

Fees do not apply for use in advertising or live performance. Please email us at for licensing fee quote.

  Licensing Fee - Existing TIFF File* Licensing Fee - New Digital Photography
(one-time use, interior, single-language, print & electronic editions)*
Nonprofit and Self-Published    
Print run up to 1,000 $100 $100
Print run 1,001 to 5,000 $150 $150
Over 5,000 $250 $250

Trade and Textbook (including all auxillary editions)

Print run up to 2,500 $150 $150
Print run 2,501 to 25,000 $250 $300
Print run 25,001 to 100,000 $350 $450
Print run over 100,000 $450 $550
(one-time use, cover)
Nonprofit/government agencies/self-published $200 $250
Commercial publisher - print run up to 40,000 $500 $500
Commercial publisher - print run over 40,000 $750 $750
Exhibitions and Public Display*:    
Kiosk/video production $150 $200
Up to 1 year $200 $250
1 to 5 years $450 $450
5 years + $650 $650
*License is for kiosk/video is up to one year. Please call for price quote for longer period of time and for fees for traveling exhibitions to other venues.    
Documentaries/TV Programs:*    
Non-broadcast/Non-theatrical/Non-streaming $100 $150

Noncommercial Online Streaming

Film Festival
Commercial TV News Broadcast

$150 $200
Public TV broadcast with all media excluding theatrical and promotion trailers and printed materials $250 $300
Public TV broadcast, theatrical with all media excluding promotional trailers and printed materials $400 $450

Commercial TV broadcast with all media excluding theatrical and promotional trailers and printed materials for Talk Shows only

Commercial Online streaming only

$250 $350
Commercial TV broadcast with all media excluding theatrical and promotional trailers and printed materials for all other type TV shows and documentaries $400 $450
Commercial TV broadcast, theatrical with all media excluding promotional trailers and printed materials $600 $600
*For promotional trailer use there is an additional fee of $50 per image for nonprofit and $100 per image for commercial. Please contact Permissions for fees for promotional printed materials.    
Nonprofit Journals    
Print run up to 10,000 $100 $100
Print run over 10,000 $200 $200
Cover $300 $300
Nonprofit Brochures, Programs, Newsletters, etc.:    
Print run up to 1,000 $150 $150
Print run 1,001 to 10,000 $250 $250
Print run over 10,000 $350 $400
Cover $500 $500
Commercial Newspapers, Magazines, Brochures, Booklets, etc.:    
Less than half page $250 $250
Greater than half page $350 $400
Cover $750 $750

*There is a $100 surcharge on top of fees posted to re-scan images already digitized to create larger files.

Rush Service Surcharges on Top of Fees Above

(Not all items are available for expedited or rush service)

Existing Digital File
Regular delivery: within 2 business days.
Rush (same day delivery if order placed before 4:00pm EST): +$25 per image

New Digital File
Regular delivery: 4 weeks
Expedited (delivery within 2 weeks): +$50 per image (for individuals only); +$100 per image (for all others)

Digital files are downloadable from NYPL's FTP/HTTP site. Customer will receive an email with username and password for download access.

List of NYPL Rights-Held or Rights-Controlled Photographers/Creators and Collections (subject to change)

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