To keep in mind when publishing
Copyright and Creative Commons licenses
Regardless of how you choose to publish your article you should make sure that you retain the rights to your own text. An author will always have copyright to his or her own text, i.e. the moral rights as well as the economic rights. Your moral rights are non-negotiable, but the economic rights can be sold or transferred to, for example, a publisher or a scientific journal.
Keep in mind that:
- The publishers’ terms vary. Familiarise yourself with the publishers’ terms and choose a publisher accordingly. Search Sherpa/Romeo to check the terms of different publishers.
- Read the agreement you are given by the publisher closely before signing. It specifies what rights you transfer to the publisher.
- Check that the agreement that you sign gives you the right to self-archive your article, use it in your teaching etc.
- If you are not satisfied, bear in mind that you can negotiate the terms with the publisher before signing the agreement. You can use an author addendum stating what rights that you want to keep, for example self-archiving, re-use of your material or the right to use it in your teaching. More information and examples of author addendums can be found at openaccess.se and SPARC.
Creative Commons licenses
If you want to be able to share your text, in full or in part, you can assign a Creative Commons license to it. Remember to do this before you sign an agreement with a publisher. Creative Commons supply different degrees of licenses that specify in what ways others are allowed to use your work, and most Open Access publishers will automatically assign a CC license to articles.
Since 2017 the Swedish Research Council (VR) will mandate a CC license for publications based on research funded by VR. Horizon 2020 recommends a CC license for research publications.
Dubious publishers also within OA
Just as among traditional journals there are, unfortunately, Open Access journals that are not serious. Many serious Open Access journals finance their publishing by charging a publication fee, called APC or Article Processing Charge. This is a way for Open Access publishers to cover their costs, since they have no income from subscriptions. It is, however, important to watch out for actors in this field who are not serious. These include publishers and journals who want to attract researchers in order to collect the publication fee. Contact us if you need help with determining if a journal seems serious, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) is a directory of quality controlled OA journals.
The University of Borås has compiled a guide to help researchers assess journals.
General advice about publishing articles from Think. Check. Submit.