Re: Evolving Publisher Copyright Policies On Self-Archiving

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Fri, 5 Nov 2004 18:45:53 +0000

On Fri, 5 Nov 2004, Rick Anderson wrote:

> It seems to me that if David's challenges bear on the legality of a
> particular OA strategy or practice, especially a strategy or practice
> that you, Stevan, are specifically encouraging others in this forum to
> take, then this forum is in fact an excellent place for you to answer
> those challenges.

There were two challenges: One was for evidence that authors were actually
self-archiving preprints and corrigenda (the "Oppenheim/Harnad
Strategy"). I provided that evidence:

The second challenge was:

   "to provide any opinion from an intellectual property attorney that
   this is a legally sustainable way of proceeding... not just [SH's] or
   other legally unqualified person's personal argument, however plausible".

I am not sure whether Charles Oppenheim meets David Goodman's conditions
for a "legally qualified person." He is not an attorney, but he has been
intellectual property adviser to the European Community and is the author of

     Oppenheim, C., (2001) The Legal and Regulatory Environment for Electronic
     Information, Infomatics, Fourth Edition. Infomatics, Tetbury, 265pp

as well the co-author of the Oppenheim-Harnad Strategy in question:

    "Legal ways around copyright for one's own giveaway texts" (2000)

> Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2000 18:18:43 +0000
> From: Charles Oppenheim <>
> Subject: Re: Legal ways around copyright of one's own giveaway texts
> There is no disagreement. I support Stevan's view that by doing the
> following:
> 1 author posts unrefereed preprint on web site
> 2 author submits same at a later date (maybe five minutes later!) to
> a refereed journal
> 3 if/when accepted, author makes amendments to the article
> in the light of the referees' and editor's comments
> 4 author signs copyright assignment form of publisher and hand on
> heart confirms that this article has not appeared anywhere before
> 5 author then posts note onto preprint, pointing out the sorts of
> areas where corrections might need to be made by a reader to
> improve the text
> then the author has done nothing wrong, has broken no law, and has not
> signed a contract (s)he should not have signed.
> Professor Charles Oppenheim
> Dept of Information Science
> Loughborough University
> Loughborough
> Leics LE11 3TU

(Note that Charles' recent posting on this thread was not about the
preprint/corrigenda strategy (under challenge here), but about the
post/inform strategy (not originating from me, but of course welcomed by
me), whereby the author informs his publisher that he has self-archived
his article and that if no objection is heard within 30 days, it is
assumed that there is no objection.)

Stevan Harnad
Received on Fri Nov 05 2004 - 18:45:53 GMT

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