Open-access archiving is becoming an expectation – and in some cases a requirement – for scholars. As such, more publishers are allowing it in some form. We comply with publisher policies when they are known, and if content on the repository is discovered to be out of compliance, we withdraw it.
eCommons staff use several means to discover an author’s right to archive his or her work in an open-access repository. If we can’t find out the policy through our typical channels, we will write to the publisher for permission. If it is not granted, we can provide a link to the article rather than a full-text download option.
- Copyright transfer agreement (also sometimes called license to publish): Publishers typically require authors to transfer copyright to the publisher in a copyright transfer agreement or a license to publish. Please save this document. Sometimes, an agreement includes a clause granting an author the right to archive the work in an institutional repository. If not, an author can often add a clause to retain this right; remember this for future publications. If you didn’t save the copyright transfer agreement, we can help you determine your rights. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Copyright clearance: Journal policies regarding open access may have changed since you published some of your articles. SHERPA/RoMEO (http://www.sherpa.ac.uk/romeo/) is a continuously updated online database of copyright and self-archiving policies for tens of thousands of publications worldwide. It reveals what rights a publisher will grant authors for archiving in certain formats; it also lists requirements for information to provide when archiving on an open-access repository. If a publication isn't in SHERPA/RoMEO, we can often find the policy on the journal website or by contacting the journal editor. Please contact us for assistance.