Public Use Notice of Limitations
Department of Defense (DoD) motion and still media files, hereafter referred to as Visual Information (VI), are provided as a public service by the DoD consistent with the DoD’s Principles of Information, which may be found at https://www.defense.gov/Resources/Principles-of-Information/.
No Representations or Warranties. DoD makes no representations or warranties of any kind regarding the suitability of DoD VI for non-DoD purposes. Use of DoD VI is at the user’s sole risk.
Publicity and Privacy Rights. DoD VI postings do not waive any publicity or privacy rights of any individuals portrayed.
Intellectual Property Restrictions. Military Department and other DoD Component names, insignia, seals, symbols, and similar marks may be protected as trademarks or service marks and may not be used in commerce without prior written permission. DoD Component Trademark Licensing Office contacts may be found at https://www.defense.gov/Resources/Branding-and-Trademarks/.
In general, DoD VI that are works of authorship prepared by U.S. Government employees as part of their official duties are not eligible for copyright protection in the United States.
However, some of the DoD VI available on this publicly accessible website may be subject to copyright or other intellectual property rights owned by non-DoD parties, regardless of whether the VI is marked with a copyright notice or other indication of non-DoD ownership or interests.
Any use of this DoD VI other than as expressly authorized in this notice may subject the user to legal liability, including liability to such non-DoD owners of intellectual property or other protectable legal interests.
Non-Endorsement Requirements and Disclaimer. DoD VI may not be used in a manner that could imply endorsement of an individual, for-profit business, nonprofit organization, any other non-federal entity (including DoD contractors), product, or service, or any political party or candidate for partisan political office. This applies to both domestic and international users. Endorsement of a non-federal entity, event, product, service, or enterprise may be neither stated nor implied. All users of DoD VI must display this non-DoD endorsement disclaimer except that commercial items are not required to use the full disclaimer when it is impracticable:
“The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.”
Commercial Use Defined. Use of VI by any individual or entity for advertisements, marketing, promotion, solicitation, or fundraising purposes regardless of whether the user is a for-profit business, business industry organization, or nonprofit organization, including an educational institution. Commercial use includes a particular individual posting VI on an electronic messaging service that could then be distributed further, regardless of original intent. Commercial use does not include activities described below as “Productions Authorized for DoD Assistance.”
Commercial Use Authorized. To the maximum extent practicable, all commercial uses are required to display the non-DoD endorsement disclaimer. Commercial users are also requested to obscure all distinctive U.S. military markings (e.g., tail or hull number, unit insignia, Service name) and other indicia that could connote DoD endorsement from DoD aircraft, missiles, ships, and other hardware or uniforms that may be used in any marketing or advertising campaign, including any collateral products.
Non-Commercial Use Authorized. Except in cases where productions are authorized for DoD assistance, DoD VI may be distributed, copied, and used, for non-commercial, personal use, as well as historical and newsworthy purposes or activities. Display of the non-DoD endorsement disclaimer is requested.
Productions Authorized for DoD Assistance. DoD VI obtained for use in a third-party production (e.g., motion picture, documentary, television, or video production) for which the Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs has authorized production assistance is governed under separate authority and project-specific terms, pursuant to DoD Instruction 5410.16, and will not be considered to be either commercial use or non-commercial use.
Source: Pages 46-47 of DoD Instruction 5410.19 Volume 1, “Community Outreach Activities: Policy Overview and Evaluation,” September 29, 2021. Hyperlinks to the DoD’s Principles of Information and the DoD Component Trademark Licensing Office were updated February 23, 2023.