PSG Number: GM-14-005
Topical Area: Web Design and Development
Issue Date: 11/1/2013
Effective Date: 11/1/2013
Updated: 10/5/2015
Document Type: Guideline; Published (approved by Web Standards Group and GTA)
POC for Changes: Interactive
Synopsis: Social media guidelines for photo sharing for State of Georgia agencies.

4.5.0 Introduction

If your agency has a wealth of photos, you will likely want to share them online. While many web content management systems have built-in photo gallery features, if you want to make your photos even more publicly available and open to comments, you may want to post them on a photo sharing service, such as Flickr, or a Facebook photo gallery.

4.5.1 Benefits of Photo Sharing

  • Raises awareness of your agency’s activities through photos of events.
  • Spurs audience discussion; visual content tends to attract higher engagement rates than simple text does.
  • Offers the potential to reach new audiences.
  • Allows your audience to easily browse, view, and download content.
  • Provides an opportunity for your audience to contribute photos that help promote your campaigns.

4.5.2 Strategies for Photo Sharing

  • Determine your purpose and goals for using a photo sharing service.
    • Does your target audience have an interest in the content?
    • How will your audience benefit from the content?
    • How will your agency benefit from having these photos available?
  • Assign resources for managing the account, including people to manage tasks such as:
    • Photography
    • Photo editing and cleanup
    • Account management
    • Organization of photos and collections
    • Adding metadata (titles, descriptions, and keywords)
    • Moderating comments
  • Be sure you have the rights to any photos prior to posting them.
  • Be sure you have permission to use the likeness of any persons in your photos.
  • Offer photo contributors “courtesy of” credits when you promote the images across social platforms.
  • Set your Privacy and Permissions for your photo content
    • Who can download content, and at what resolution?
    • Who can share content?
    • Will you enable comments?
  • Determine your copyright settings for your photos. Do you want to give others permission to use or share your photos? Are these historical photographs with no known copyright restrictions? There a number of licensing settings available for your photos.
    • All Rights Reserved - strict copyrighting policy
    • Creative Commons - provides a number of choices for how to allow your photos to be reused. More information at
    • No Known Restrictions - for historical photographs with no restrictions. More information at
  • Determine how you’d like to archive photographs for quick reference at a later time.

4.5.3 Tips and Guidelines

  • Consult with your agency’s Records Management contact to determine if your agency has any requirements related to records management of photos.
  • Be sure to include descriptive text for each of your photos to make them easier to find and to comply with accessibility guidelines.
  • Consider only posting the best photos from each event, rather than every picture.

4.5.4 Authentication

  • Link to your .gov site from your profile page.
  • Link to your photo sharing profile from your .gov website.
  • Use your official logo or trademark as your profile photo.
  • Claim authenticity in your profile.
  • Provide a .gov email address as your point of contact.

4.5.5 Examples

4.5.6 References