OA Glossary

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Glossary of Terms

Below is a brief glossary of terms and concepts used in Open Access.

  • Author Addenda and the Publisher Agreement (Copyright Transfer forms)

    An author's addendum is a standardized legal instrument that modifies the publisher's agreement and allows the author to keep key rights. Until recently, the primary method that authors could use to retain some of the rights in their writings was to rewrite the contract with the publishers themselves. Thanks to the development of standardized author addenda, the task has become much simpler. The addendum usually spells out what rights the author does or does not have in several key areas:

    • The extent of the author's ability to continue to use the copyrighted work even after the transfer of copyright to a publisher, including the ability of the author to make copies of the work or prepare new works based on the copyrighted work.
    • The author's ability to authorize others to use the work.
    • Whether and when the author's institution can make any use of the work.
    • Whether and when the author's funding agency can make use of the work.
    • When and under what circumstances, if any, people at other institutions can use the work.
    • What legal protections are available to the author.

    *From Peter B. Hirtle, Author Addenda: An Examination of Five Alternatives

  • Author (Copyright Transfer) Agreements or “Publisher Agreements”

    When an author publishes a book or a paper, many publishers ask the author to transfer all copyrights (see copyright explained below) in the work to the publisher. But that is not always to the author's advantage. When authors assign to publishers all of the rights that comprise the bundle of rights known as copyright, they lose control over their scholarly output. Assignment of copyright ownership may limit the ability of authors to incorporate elements into future articles and books. Authors may not be able to use their own work in their teaching, or to authorize others at the institution or elsewhere to use materials. Unless addressed in the transfer agreement, the publisher may forbid an author to do the following:

    • Post the work to the author's own web site, an institutional repository, or a subject-based repository.
    • Copy the work for distribution to their students.
    • Use the work as the basis for future articles or other works.
    • Give permission for the work to be used in a course at the author's institution.
    • Grant permission to faculty and students at other universities to use the material.

    For all of the above reasons, many organizations and institutions have encouraged authors to better manage their copyrights.

    *From Peter B. Hirtle, Author Addenda: An Examination of Five Alternatives

  • Author Accepted Manuscript (Also known as the "Author Final Draft" or the "Author's Post Print")

    The version of the manuscript submitted for publication which has gone through peer-review and been accepted for publications, but is NOT the publisher's published version. This version is also known as the author final draft and/or the author's post print. This is the version comes after the Pre-Print and before the Publisher's PDF.

  • Copyright:

    The copyright rule, the copyright law (17 USC Sec. 106) protects the following rights of a copyright holder (not necessarily the author/creator) to do or authorize the following:

    1. to reproduce the copyrighted work in copies or phonorecords;
    2. to prepare derivative works based upon the copyrighted work;
    3. to distribute copies or phonorecords of the copyrighted work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending;
    4. in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works, to perform the copyrighted work publicly; and
    5. in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works, including the individual images of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, to display the copyrighted work publicly.

    Thus, a copyright holder not only may do any of the five above things, but the copyright holder may also authorize another to do one or more of these things.

    The authorization is a license (see License below) of another to either reproduce, prepare derivative works, distribute, perform or display, in the manner specified in the license.

  • License, Non-Exclusive (used in publication agreements)

    “Granting a license means granting rights of use to that whose intellectual property one does not own” Licenses do not transfer copyright and are, essentially, a business deal.

    Licenses can be exclusive (often true in publishing) or or non-exclusive (as when libraries license information or as part of an Open Access policy). A time period is always established. For more information, see Open Access policies at Harvard University or the University of Kansas.

  • Open Access

    The movement among scholars that aims to make scholarly literature freely available on the public web. An umbrella term, open access includes both open access journal publishing and author self-archiving in digital repositories or on personal websites.

    From Suber's Open Access Overview: "Open-access (OA) literature is digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions."

    From the Budapest Open Access Initiative: "By 'open access' to this literature, we mean its free availability on the public internet, permitting any users to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles, crawl them for indexing, pass them as data to software, or use them for any other lawful purpose, without financial, legal, or technical barriers other than those inseparable from gaining access to the internet itself. The only constraint on reproduction and distribution, and the only role for copyright in this domain, should be to give authors control over the integrity of their work and the right to be properly acknowledged and cited."

  • Peer Review and Open Access

    Open Access is an access model—a method for readers/scholars to access documents using the internet. It does not in any way interfere with the normal peer review process that occurs in the scholarly literature. This “open” access model does not interfere with normal refereeing or peer review or editing, any more than a “toll” or fee-based access model does.

  • Post-print (Also known as the Author's Accepted Manuscript or the Author's Final Draft)

    Some publishers use this term to refer to a scholarly article in its final form, after it has gone through the peer review/refereeing process. Publishers often distinguish between pre- and post-prints in their policies on self-archiving articles. Post-prints are not the PDF produced by the publishers, but may be a Word or PDF version produced by the author. Since additional changes may occur during the Publisher’s production process, post-prints are not considered "the version of record" and thus are of lesser value than the published version of an article. This is the version of the article that comes after the Pre-Print and before the Publisher’s PDF.

  • Pre-Print

    A scholarly article submitted for publication but which has not yet gone through peer-review. This is the version of the work that comes before the Author Accepted Manuscript and the Publisher’s PDF.

  • Publisher PDF

    The final peer reviewed version of a work, with copy editing and typesetting done by the publisher as published by journal. This version of the work and comes after the Pre-Print and the Author Accepted Manuscript.

  • SHERPA/RoMEO publisher copyright policies & self-archiving site: http://www.sherpa.ac.uk/romeo/

    This website provides an easy interface with information on publishers' known policies regarding open sharing—whether publisher agreements allow a copy of authors' papers to be shared or if the journal is an open access (peer reviewed) journal. It is searchable by either publisher name or journal title.

Several of the above entries taken from: http://www.library.uiuc.edu/scholcomm/glossary.html