UPDIG Image Receivers Guidelines | version 4.0
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vision statement
The photography industry is undergoing great change. New ways of making and working with photographs are replacing older methods. The broad capabilities and efficiencies of digital capture and delivery have revolutionized the image marketplace. But in doing so they have exposed gaps in creative and quality control that frequently lead to confusion, inefficiencies, loss of quality and unnecessary expense. We recognize the need for worldwide imaging standards to facilitate reliable and repeatable image reproduction.

Film-based photography workflows relied on transparencies or prints to establish and share color and tonal information. Digital imaging lacks such tangible references. Integrated color management with accepted ICC workflows fills that void. After more than a decade of regular use and adjustment, ICC (also known as ICM) has proved itself a mature technology used by thousands of professionals. As the first link in the image supply chain, photographers must establish and adhere to the best practices of color management. And those who work with their photographs must follow the same standards in order to accurately reproduce those photographs.

The media for delivery and storage of images have also changed. Digital Asset Management offers a set of standards to replace film-based workflows. Our task is to identify terminology and workflow for image creation, image delivery, accurate reproduction and archiving. Implementing the standards and practices in these guidelines will enhance creative control and economic efficiency.

mission statement

The UPDIG Coalition is a global initiative of industry organizations working to identify, define and share best technical practices for reproducing, exchanging and archiving digital images.

The UPDIG Coalition brings together industry experts representing creators, distributors, users, technology providers and others dedicated to this mission.

The UPDIG Coalition collectively publishes and promotes the Universal Photographic Digital Imaging Guidelines.


  1. Make digital imaging practices clearer and more reliable by developing standards for quality and terminology.
  2. Develop web resources for imaging professionals that establish common digital imaging terms.
  3. Demonstrate the creative and economic benefits of these guidelines.
  4. Develop industry guidelines and suggested workflows for various types of image reproduction.
  5. Establish consensus on these issues among professional photography trade organizations, image distributors, archives, printers, software developers and manufacturers.
standardization goals
  1. Color Management: ICC Workflow, Hardware Calibration, Guide Prints and Proofs
  2. File Delivery and Archiving: Naming Conventions, Resolution, Sharpening, Digital Workflow
  3. Metadata: embedded IPTC and XMP data, including PLUS Licensing Language
  4. Industry Terminology
UPDIG Home | Guidelines Menu | Table of Contents | Previous: UPDIG Coalition Members | Foreword | Next: About the Guidelines for Image Receivers