When you produce digital publications with archival materials, you will need to provide both citations and sometimes also media credits. Citations provide the basic information of how readers can find the source—they are primarily about the source. Media credits are about copyright and permissions: they are a way of recognizing when you have obtained permission and recognizing the people or institutions that made it possible for you to use the image.
Here are some things to consider when giving credit through citations and media credits:
- Citations go in your regular works cited list and use the same citation format you are using for other items. Digital media sometimes come with a recommended citation, but you may need to modify it to meet the citation format you are using. If the resource is rare and access is only available through archival or special collections, including digitized collections, you should include that location information in the citation.
- Image credits might go into an "Image[or Media] Credits" section at the end of a publication, before or after the "Works Cited" list. Alternately, each media item might be accompanied by its credit as an annotation, or as part of the metadata. Or you might do both!
- Sometimes a license for digital media will specify the language for the credit. If it does, you should use that language.
- Media credits vary in what they include, but you should be consistent in formatting. A good set of guidelines for what to put in a media credit comes from Creative Commons, which recommends TASL: Title, Author, Source, License (see link below). The “source” is a link to the original online copy if there is one. In some cases there may not be license that accompanied the media, but this would also be the place to note the library or archive that made the item or its digital surrogate available (e.g., “courtesy of Library of Congress”), or give a permission statement (e.g., “used by permission of [author/institutions]”).
For more information, see the Creative Commons information on attribution, including examples: