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Scholarly Publishing and Open Access: Copyright For Authors
Guide for student and faculty authors to understand scholarly publishing, open access, and retaining copyright. Several content boxes in this guide were used with permission from Boston College.
Many publishers now anticipate an author's legitimate need to distribute and repurpose his work and no longer require exclusive rights to publication. Some publishers balance their interest in recouping publishing costs with the author’s desire to disseminate their ideas broadly, placing a short-term embargo on the open access archiving of the work.
Transferring copyright doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Publishers require only the author’s permission to publish an article, not a wholesale transfer of copyright. To make retention of rights easier, use the Scholar's Copyright Addendum Engine to generate a cusomized addendum to your publisher's contract, reserving the rights you need.
This Columbia University website "aims to make clear why you might want to keep your copyrights, and to provide information both to help you hold on to your rights and to grant on reasonable terms the rights you do license."
Open or Closed: Author's Choice
Use the Sherpa/RoMEO website to find a journal or publisher's standard policy on retention of copyright by authors.
The entry for each publisher lists conditions or restrictions imposed by the publisher on authors' rights to deposit their articles in open access repositories.