“Walking in quicksand ­ keeping up with copyright agreements”

23/05/2013 – 7:24 am
Tony McCall

As any repository manager will tell you, one of the biggest headaches for providing open access to research materials is complying with publisher agreements.

Most publishers will allow some form of an article published in their journals to be made open access. There is a very useful site that helps people work out what the conditions are for a given journal or publisher, called Sherpa RoMEO*.

In many institutions the responsibility for copyright checking is taken by the repository manager (rather than requiring the author to do it), and usually the workflow includes some or all of:

Checking Sherpa RoMEO and/or the OAKList for local journals
Consulting (and adding to) an internal database
Looking at the journal/conference/publisher webpages
Locating and consulting at the Copyright Transfer Agreement the author signed
Contacting the publisher directly for permission if the OA position is not able to be determined using any of these resources.

One problem repository managers face is that publishers sometimes change their position on open access. Often there is no public announcement from the publisher; especially when the change imposes more restrictions on ‘green’ open access. This is where the blogosphere and discussion lists (such as the CAIRSS List in Australia) are invaluable in keeping practitioners on top of new issues in the area.

Some recent cases where publishers set more restrictions on ‘green’ open access include Springer and IEEE.

[*SHERPA stands for Securing a Hybrid Environment for Research Preservation and Access, and RoMEO stands for Rights Metadata for Open archiving.]

More at:

author: Danny Kingsley
source: AOASG (23/5/13)

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