Copyright and Lehigh Preserve

Any author publishing work in Lehigh Preserve must either hold the copyright for the work or have the permission of the copyright holder to publish it in Lehigh Preserve and provide evidence of the copyright status. Many authors sign agreements that transfer copyright and other important use rights from the author to the publisher. It is often possible to preserve self-archiving rights when negotiating book and journal contracts and Lehigh authors are encouraged to do so. Sample language for retaining rights is included in the SPARC Author’s Addendum to Publication Agreement (http://sparc.arl.org/resources/authors/addendum-2007). SPARC is the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition, an “international alliance of academic and research libraries working to create a more open system of scholarly communication.” Lehigh is a member of SPARC.

If an author does not maintain copyright, it still may be possible to place some version of a work in Lehigh Preserve, such as a pre-print or a post-print. In some cases, an author may not be sure about what rights were granted by the publisher. The Sherpa-Romeo Publisher Copyright Database (http://www.sherpa.ac.uk/romeo/) enables a search by periodical title and outlines permissions granted by publisher agreements. Lehigh librarians are developing files on open access and self-archiving policies for publishers used most often by Lehigh faculty. In cases where publishers require an embargo period before authors may distribute a publication, Lehigh Preserve can limit access until the embargo period is over.

An option for authors who wish to publish directly to Lehigh Preserve but are concerned about retaining some rights in a more formal fashion is the Creative Commons license. Creative Commons licenses help authors hold on to their copyright while also permitting various levels of use, generally non-commercial use. For example, an author may decide not to allow commercial use, but permit the creation of derivative works as long as they are available under the same license terms. The Creative Commons page (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/) clearly outlines license choices and offers a helpful selection tool (http://creativecommons.org/choose/).

What is Open Access and why choose it for your scholarly materials?

This definition is offered by SPARC: “Open Access is the free, immediate, online availability of research articles, coupled with the rights to use these articles fully in the digital environment.” Open Access is increasingly important to scholars who seek broad access to their work, communication across disciplinary borders, international impact, or public availability now required by funding sources. The current scholarly publishing system, both restrictive and expensive, constricts access and hampers the ability of authors to expose and share their own work in an interconnected Web environment.

Lehigh Preserve is dedicated to offering the open access publications of the Lehigh Community, providing a venue for enhanced exposure, sharing, and use.