The Library at Oregon Health and Science University has a nice webpage of resources on thesis and copyright. Those looking to create your own set of resources, or enhance existing resources, might find a review of this site helpful. There is a nice, but brief, overview of copyright and instruction for appropriately placing the notice in your thesis. There is also a brief discussion on fair use and obtaining permission for copyrighted material. The site does not go into depth on copyright issues but has a useful list of links for further exploration.
Category Archives: Copyright
Part of this blog entry is reprinted from Scholarly Communication at Texas A&M. If you provide information to students on copyright, you might be interested in the article by Timothy Armstrong, An Introduction to Publication Agreements for Authors, which compels authors (e.g., our graduate students) on how to retain their rights as authors rather than signing away copyright to publishers.
If you are unclear why you should retain rights — or what rights publishers actually need to publish your work, this is a very useful and quick, two-page read.
Below is an excerpt:
There are good reasons to retain your copyright rather than assigning it to the publisher. Why might you prefer this?
- Publishers can do all the things they might legitimately want to do with your work (publish it, put it on their web site, advertise it, submit it to the major databases, offer it to other authors for commentary, and the list could go on) without owning the copyright. You can grant all the permissions that are necessary to make their publication perfectly lawful. A variety of standard form agreements exist to accomplish this.
- Flexibility. You probably can’t anticipate all the ways in which you might want to use (or reuse) your article in the future. Years from now, you may decide that you want to post it on SSRN, or convert it to a book chapter, or update it to account for subsequent legal developments. If you own the rights to the work, you can do all those things. If you assigned away your rights, you must negotiate with the original publisher. Perhaps they will grant you the permission to reuse their work (remember, if you assigned away your copyright, they own it) in the manner you wish. But, at a minimum, it introduces inconveniences that would not exist if you retained your copyright.
In the latest issue of Education Review, Lawrence Lessig, Director of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics at Harvard University and Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, offers several observations regarding copyright and several proposals about how we should respond. This article is based on Lawrence Lessig’s keynote address at the EDUCAUSE 2009 Annual Conference, Denver, Colorado, November 5, 2009. You may read the article, link to an audio podcast, or link to the presentation slides from the Educause Review site. It may offer more information than you have time to digest, but it does offer useful background on Creative Commons licensing, a rationale for the open access movement and questions the purpose and value of copyright in our electronic age. A quick excerpt is posted below:
“The existing system of copyright cannot work in the digital age. Either we will force our kids to stop creating, or they will force on us a revolution. Both options, in my view, are not acceptable.”
Many of you may be familiar with the ETD Bibliography published by Charles Bailey, Jr., but have you reviewed other resources available from the Digital Scholarship website? If not, I highly recommend you do so. I just discovered the Tout de Suite series on Author’s Rights and Institutional Repositories. According to the website this series, “gives readers a quick introduction to selected topics and provides pertinent references to online documents and links to relevant Web sites”. At Texas A&M, the Library and Office of Graduate Studies have recently partnered to better educate students on their rights, responsibilities, and options with respect to copyright. Many of the elements of our campaign can be found in Bailey’s Author’s Rights, Tout de Suite, including information about the nature of copyright, fair use, open access, traditional publication agreements, copyright addenda, creative commons licensing, and more.
In addition to the Tout de Suites, Bailey also has available the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog, which “provides references to new works related to scholarly electronic publishing, such as books, journal articles, magazine articles, technical reports, and white papers”. This is a great way to find recently published research in the field.
The Berkman Center for Internet & Society and eIFL.net have launched “Copyright for Librarians.” Although much of this may not be relevant for those working with ETDs, Module 1 gives a basic introduction which may be helpful on copyright and the public domain. Here’s an excerpt from the press release:
“Copyright for Librarians” aims to inform librarians about copyright law in general, as well as the aspects of copyright law that most affect libraries, especially those in developing and transition countries.
The course materials of “Copyright for Librarians” consists of nine modules organised into five different levels.
While browsing the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign website, I stumbled across the University Library Copyright page. The page provides a very nice summary on how scholars can better manage their intellectual property (and why they need to do so), including a list of resources for additional information.
Texas A&M just concluded a series of Information Seminars, which included information regarding copyright. I feel very fortunate to be able to work with Gail Clement, who gave a wonderful presentation on copyright and educational fair use. The feedback from students on this single topic was tremendous, with several noting how important it is for them to have this information early in their graduate careers. I believe we, in the library and graduate college, have a great opportunity to impact these young scholars by raising awareness of, and imparting skills to enable them to better mange, their intellectual property.
More on Copyright and ETDs – Copyright & Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for Digitization for US Libraries, Archives, and Museums
Are you looking for more information on copyright with respect to ETDs? If so, you might want to consider Copyright & Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for Digitization for US Libraries, Archives, and Museums, authored by Peter B. Hirtle, Emily Hudson and Andrew T. Kenyon. Published late last year by the Cornell University Library, one of the two case studies in the book is on digitizing dissertations, theses, and student papers. According to the Cornell University Library press release:
“The development of new digital technologies has led to fundamental changes in the ways that cultural institutions fulfill their public missions of access, preservation, research, and education. Many institutions are developing publicly accessible Web sites that allow users to visit online exhibitions, search collection databases, access images of collection items, and in some cases create their own digital content. Digitization, however, also raises the possibility of copyright infringement. It is imperative that staff in libraries, archives, and museums understand fundamental copyright principles and how institutional procedures can be affected by the law.”
On a side note, if you are looking for a new blog to follow, you may wish to check out LibraryLaw blog, authored by Mary Minow and Peter Hirtle.
If any of you like to keep track of copyright and fair use issues in more detail than I do, then you may be interested in the updated chart from Peter Hirtle. In addition to the chart, Hirtle participates in a brief interview regarding recent changes and potential shortcomings of the new document.
I recently encountered Virginia Tech’s ETD website and thought this might be a resource worth sharing. I firmly believe we can learn from best practices at other institutions. The challenge is more often in the discovery of these best practices and the time that discovery requires. As may of you are aware Virginia Tech was one of the pioneering institutions in the field of ETDs. The website has some excellent copyright resources for institutions looking for information about fair use, publishers attitudes toward ETDs, instructional guidance, assistance with obtaining necessary permissions for inclusion into an ETD, and much more. Check it out. –Laura