Breakdown of DoDI 5040.02

Article 2 min
Understand the key takeaways of each enclosure concerning VI and the OMB Circular A-130.

What is DoDI 5040.02

DoDI 5040.02 contains DoD Policy that implements OMB Circular A-130 and governs all Visual Information activities of Public Affairs, Combat Camera and other VI-related functions of the Department of Defense, including:

  • Establishes policy, assigns responsibilities and prescribes procedures for managing DoD Visual Information
  • VI is viewed and used as an essential information resource and supporting capability for strategic communication
  • DoD shall make, acquire, or create VI, distribute VI and preserve VI
  • DoD lifecycle management shall be conducted in accordance with electronic records management and appropriate U.S. laws

What is OMB Circular A-130

OMB Circular A-130, issued by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), refers to the management of Federal Information Resources. Circulars are instructions issued by OMB to establish policies and outline procedures for implementation.

  • Incorporates “audiovisual” into the definition of “information”
  • “Information” means any communication or representation of knowledge in any medium form
  • “Audiovisual productions” describe a unified presentation, developed according to plan or script, containing visual imagery, sound or both
  • Each Federal agency must designate an office that is responsible for management oversight of agency audiovisual productions
  • Specifies that there will be interagency or intergovernmental sharing of information before creating/collecting new information

DoDI 5040.02 contains ten enclosures. Refer to the table below to identify a summary of each enclosure:

Key takeaways of 5040.02 enclosures.


Key Takeaway (Summary)

1: References

Lists the references used throughout DoDI 5040.02.

2: Responsibilities

Establishes the roles and responsibilities of the Secretaries, Directors, heads of components and combatant commanders who play a role in VI management.

3: Committees, Planning Groups and Panels

Outlines the responsibilities of the DVISC and JCCPG.

4: Exclusions

This section identifies the types of VI excluded from this instruction, including:
  • Media-related, such as microfilms and maps.
  • Content related exclusions, such as imagery collected for intelligence, evidence and medical documentation.
  • Organization-related exclusions such as the Commissary and Exchange.
  • Equipment related exclusions such as military signage and simulations.
  • Exceptions to the exclusions include, but are not limited to, VI related to news events, launches, international activities, ceremonies, combat operations and crimes.

5: Lifecycle management of DoD VI

Includes policy and process for managing VI products, from the point of creation by an individual, to its transfer to NARA. This includes information on proper formatting, captioning, metadata and accessioning procedures.

6: VI Records Identification Number (VIRIN)

Prescribes procedures for the creation and use of a VIRIN for all official DoD imagery, other than DoD productions assigned a Production Identification Number. A VIRIN enables the management of the imagery as a shared strategic asset, facilitate retrieval, repurposing and provide an enterprise record identification system. Outlines the four fields and formatting of a VIRIN.

7: Vision ID

This section covers the procedures for acquiring a Vision ID, and how the Vision ID is used within a VIRIN. All photographers, videographers, graphic artists, photojournalists, broadcasters, public affairs and other personnel involved in the creation of official DoD imagery shall be assigned a Vision ID.

A Vision ID is acquired through DVIDS.

8: VI Activity Management

This section covers the responsibilities and organizational requirements of VI activities.

This section also covers the requirement of all VI activities to register and provide information about products and services available from each authorized VI activity and to be assigned a DVIAN.


This section covers the who, what, when, where and why of COMCAM. It also discusses the deployment and distribution of images to the public.

10: Prohibited Alteration of Official DoD Imagery

This section prohibits the alteration of official DoD imagery. It covers authorized enhancement and correction techniques and explains prohibited alterations of VI materials. This section also includes the requirements for situations when an image must be altered (such as cropped or masked for privacy), and how to document these alterations.

Refer to the policy itself for more information.

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