Re: Copyright retention is not a prerequisite for self-archiving

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2007 00:39:16 +0100

If you are put off by the endless jeremiads of your weary archivangelist
then please do listen to the gentler, ecumenical voice of the
Prophet Peter!

Here is Peter Suber's comment in Open Access News on University of Illinois
Provost Linda Katehi's letter to UI faculty:
encouraging them to use the CIC author addendum [on retaining copyright]
as recommended by the CIC Statement on Publishing Agreements and an Addendum
to Publication Agreements for CIC Authors.

    Peter's Comment.
    "The U of I is right to encourage faculty to use the CIC author addendum.

    "But in the June SOAN,
    I hoped that CIC institutions would go further:

    "...[I]t's not clear what form the encouragement will take. Will it
    be limited to the abstract encouragement of passing a resolution
    in the Faculty Senate? Or will there also be some case-by-case
    encouragement? ...In a standoff between a publisher and faculty
    member, what will universities do to support their faculty member?

    "Here's the bigger question: What else will these universities do to
    encourage OA archiving? If they take the step of adopting an author
    addendum, they should also adopt a policy to require OA archiving.
    If permission is not a problem (because publishers already give it
    or because an addendum worked), what will these institutions do to
    insure that faculty postprints are actually archived? ...

    "The permission problem is worth solving, but we have to remember that
    solving it is only a means to the end of OA. Universities adopting
    an author addendum are moving in the right direction, but they must
    keep moving. Permission for OA isn't yet OA itself...."

    Peter Suber, OA News

Now, for the historically minded, here are some of the unminded jeremiads
on this very point from the American Scientist Open Access Forum,
starting as early as 1998, to the effect that while copyright retention
is desirable, it is not a prerequisite for OA or OA self-archiving,
and hence that university self-archiving policy should *not* be
contingent on retaining copyright. It is much harder to get authors
to agree to and comply with a mandate to retain copyright (because it
[appears to] put their choice of journal at risk) than it is to get
authors to agree to and comply with a mandate to deposit their accepted
final drafts in their institutional repositories (the ID/OA) mandate. Therefore
the weaker mandate should be adopted first, rather than the stronger
one. (Copyright retention can wait: OA should not.)

Here are some prior AmSci Forum threads on this topic:

    "Copyright retention is not a prerequisite for self-archiving"

    "What Provosts Need to Mandate"

    "Optimizing MIT's Open Access Policy"

    "Cornell's Copyright Advice: Guide for the Perplexed Self-Archiver"

    "How to Word Institutional Self-Archiving Policy"

    "US University OA Resolutions Omit Most Important Component"

Stevan Harnad

If you have adopted or plan to adopt a policy of providing Open Access
to your own research article output, please describe your policy at:

    BOAI-1 ("Green"): Publish your article in a suitable toll-access journal
    BOAI-2 ("Gold"): Publish your article in an open-access journal if/when
    a suitable one exists.
    in BOTH cases self-archive a supplementary version of your article
    in your own institutional repository.
Received on Thu Jul 12 2007 - 11:17:41 BST

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Dec 10 2010 - 19:49:00 GMT