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Help for using the database / Frequently Asked Questions ...

  1. What kind of pictures are available in the database?
  2. How do I find pictures?
  3. What does »topic search« mean?
  4. Why do I see in some cases a note that the image cannot be shown instead of the image?
  5. What is a board?
  6. How can I download high-resolution pictures?
  7. May I use pictures for non-commercial websites?
  8. May I use pictures of the Federal Archives on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, etc.?
  9. May I upload pictures of the Federal Archives on Wikimedia Commons?
  10. Why should I register?
  11. How can I register?
  12. How long does the activation of my account take after I have registered?
  13. What are the costs for using pictures?
  14. How can I order and download pictures?
  15. Can I order pictures for exhibitions via the Digital Pictures Archive?
  16. What should I do if I have forgotten my user name and/or password?
  17. What can I do, if I cannot find any pictures of relevance to me?
  18. How may I contact you?
  19. What do the abbreviations in the captions mean?
  20. I have additions for a picture description. What can I do?
  21. Why do some captions contain judgmental and wrong statements?

... Answers

  1. What kind of pictures are available in the database?
    In the database you will find photographs including aerial views and posters relating to events and/or persons of importance for modern German history from 1860 up to now.
  2. How do I find pictures?
    There are several possibilities to find pictures: The "simple search" (the search box at the top of every page), the "advanced search" by using specific fields or the “topic search” by browsing via subject, person or locality.
  3. What does »topic search« mean?
    By browsing via subject, person or locality (=topic search) you can find pictures that have been assigned to different topic areas (i.e. "categorized"). There are two classification systems by subject, one system by person (i.e. an index of all persons to whom the Federal Archives keeps pictures) and two geographical classification systems ("Germany" and "world").
  4. Why do I see in some cases a note that the image cannot be shown instead of the image?
    If the Federal Archives hold the rights to a picture in analogue form only, i.e. not for digital use, a dummy is shown. In this case, please contact us and send us a completed "Request for Use" form as well as detailed information on your intended use. We will provide you with the picture if possible.
  5. What is a board?
    You can collect pictures on a board. Please, bear in mind that the board will be stored for four weeks for registered users only.
  6. How can I download high-resolution pictures?
    Once you have registered (free of charge) and been checked and activated by the Federal Archives, you can download high-resolution images as soon as you have paid the arising costs.
  7. May I use pictures for non-commercial websites?
    Yes, you can photos of the Federal Archives in this database on non-commercial websites (but not on social media!) under the precondition that you
    - quote the "Federal Archives" as source,
    - add the reference number of the pictures and
    - of name of the originator, i.e. the photographer. By using pictures of the Federal Archives you accept our Terms of Use.
    It's not allowed to use photos of the Bundespresseamt (Federal Press- and Information Office) for free
    !
    You also can use fotos from the Federal Archives on Wikimedia Common free of charge
    http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Commons:Bundesarchiv
  8. May I use pictures of the Federal Archives on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, etc.?
    No, for legal reasons pictures of the Federal Archives cannot be used on any social media (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.). When uploading pictures, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc. is granted a transferable right of use with the right to sublicense the pictures, which contradicts the Terms of Use of the Federal Archives
  9. May I upload pictures of the Federal Archives on Wikimedia Commons?
    No, because for releasing images of the Federal Archives on Wikimedia Commons the legal situation must be examined carefully. Only if the Federal Archives hold the required rights, an image can be made available under the license "Creative Commons BY-SA". It is explicitly prohibited for users to upload images from the Federal Archives.
  10. Why should I register?
    You may search without registration. For downloading reproducible pictures (as well as creating PDF files) it is necessary to register and provide your personal data in order to enable the automated payment procedure.
  11. How can I register?
    You will register by five (creditcard) or six (Prepayment) steps:
    1. You agree to the "Regulations for the Use of Audiovisual Materials" (Terms of Use).
    2. You provide the Federal Archives with a user name and a password.
    3. Provide us with your data and the method of payment you prefer.
    4. Activate your account by confirming the activation link we will send to you by e-mail.
    5. ONLY FOR PAYMENT METHOD "PREPAYMENT" and "DIRECT DEBIT": Fill in and sign the "Request of Use" form which we have sent to you by e-mail and return it to the Federal Archives,
    6. The Federal Archives will check your registration and activate your account if possible.
  12. How long does the activation of my account take after I have registered?
    The check will usually not need more than one working day (for "PREPAYMENT": after we have received the completed and signed request form!).
  13. What are the cost for using pictures?
    The costs depend on the purpose of use, e.g. the size of the print run. The Federal Archives charges fees in accordance with the Federal Archives Cost Regulations (= "Bundesarchiv-Kostenverordnung"; only available in German); the Federal Press and Information Office charges royalties (as shown in the shopping cart)
  14. How can I order and download pictures?
    - To order images, please log into the Digital Picture Archive of the Federal Archives with your user name and password.
    - Search for relevant pictures.
    - Click on the cart-symbol or select several pictures and click on “Add selection to cart”
    - Fill in the form and select the usage type, then press the button "[checkout]".
  15. Can I order pictures for exhibitions via the Digital Picture Archive?
    No, it is not possible to order for exhibitions via the Digital Picture Archive. Please proceed as follows:
    - Please fill in, sign and return the “Request of Use” form (via fax +49 (0)261-505430 or scanned via e-mail bild@bundesarchiv.de). Please find our address and phone number here. - Please provide us with information regarding where the exhibition will take place (town, museum), the start and the end date of the exhibition, its theme and which institution (organization) will be responsible for the exhibition.
    - Please send your order in the following form:
    [reference number] OR [reference number].
    For example:
    Bild 146-1984-062-04 OR Bild 183-1990-0518-028 OR B 145 Bild-F008112-0015
    - For providing you the pictures, we charge a minimum of 15,34 EUR (see Kostenverordnung, No. 3.). If your order includes incorrect or missing reference numbers, we will charge an additional fee of 15,34 EUR per each half an hour of additional research.
    - If pictures need to be scanned in a higher resolution (max. 600dpi on DIN A 4), we charge 15,34 EUR for every half an hour work plus a service fee.
    - The use of pictures in exhibitions itself is free of charge. Please note that this is NOT the case with pictures of the Bundespresseamt (to be distinguished through the watermark: Bundesregierung)
  16. What should I do if I have forgotten my user name and/or password?
    To receive a new password or your forgotton user name, please proceed as follows:
    - Go to “Login” (https://www.bild.bundesarchiv.de/login.php?switch_lang=en).
    - Please enter your e-mail address in the field “Password/user name forgotten” and press the “confirm” button.
    - If your e-mail address is registered in the Digital Picture Archive, the system will send you a new password and inform you about your user name. After login with the provided data, you should change the new password under "My account" > "Change password" (your new password must contain at least 8 characters!).
  17. What do I do, if I did not find any pictures of relevance to me?
    Check whether you can find relevant results by using other search terms or the topic search. If you do not succeed, please contact the Federal Archives by phone, e-mail or mail. You will find our address via"Contact".
  18. How may I contact you?
    You may contact us by phone, email or mail. Please find our address and phone number on the page "Contact".
  19. What are the abbreviations in the captions mean?
    The following abbreviations are used most frequently:
    ADN-ZB = Allgemeiner Deutscher Nachrichtendienst - Zentralbild (=News Agency of GDR (East Germany) – Central Still Pictures Service)
    BArch = Bundesarchiv (=Federal Archives)
    BPA = Bundespresseamt (=Federal Press and Information Office)
    BM = Bundesminister / Bundesministerin (=Federal Minister)
    EK = Eisernes Kreuz (="Iron Cross"; War decoration)
    Fs AOK = Fallschirm-Armeeoberkommando (=Higher Army Command for Parachutists)
    KBK = Kriegs-Berichter Kompanie (=War Correspondent Company)
    Lw = Luftwaffe (=Air Force)
    OKW = Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (=High Command of the Armed Forces)
    o.Ang. = ohne Angabe (= no information available / unknown)
    PK = Propagandakompanie (=Propaganda company)
    RK = Ritterkreuz (="Knight’s Cross"; War decoration)
    Sts = Staatssekretär / Staatssekretärin (=State secretary)
    UBz = Unser Bild zeigt (=Our picture shows)
    zbV = zur besonderen Verwendung (=For special use)
  20. I have additions for a picture description. What can I do?
    The Federal Archives describe pictures - if available - with the original text. If no original text is available, the picture is described by the archivists of the Federal Archives. In view of the large number of pictures, there may of course be inconsistencies in individual cases. For this reason we are always grateful for hints and additions.
  21. Why do some captions contain judgmental and wrong statements?
    ALL information that was originally available on or with the pictures is completely reproduced in the field "Original title" for reasons of critical research on historical sources. Especially pictures from the fonds »Bild 101 Propagandakompanien der Wehrmacht« and »Bild 183 ADN« may contain ideologically influenced or later added texts which sometimes do not correctly describe the picture"s content or the original situation