October 27, 2011

Boston Library Consortium (BLC) adds author rights language

According to the Boston Library Consortium (BLC), on September 30, 2011 the BLC Board of Directors unanimously accepted the recommendation of the BLC Scholarly Communication Priority Committee” and adopted the Author Rights Model Language, as represented in the NERL (North East Research Libraries Consortium) model contract.

In an email to the BLC membership, the BLC Board of Directors said: “In essence, the Directors committed the BLC and their institutions to good faith attempts to insert this language into new serials contracts and into serials contracts renewals.”

We have added the Boston Library Consortium (BLC) to our Adopters page.

May 9, 2011

Response to: “STM Statement on Negotiating Rights for Institutional Repository Postings and Author Rights” (March 2011)

Efforts to introduce author rights language into library content licenses have been met with a strong response from the International Association of Scientific, Technical & Medical Publishers (STM). The organization has issued a statement professing that “conflating author rights issues and institutional content licenses serves only to add greater complexity and possible legal uncertainty to such licenses without adding meaningful benefits for authors.”

Library licensing may be an imperfect venue for addressing author rights but this method can also be effective. It offers a workable means for institutions to serve their fundamental educational and research missions by making institutionally based works openly available through repositories. And it reduces the burden on individual authors, who are often not in a position to make changes to their agreements, but want and need to retain some rights.

Many publishers, including some STM members, already extend flexible reuse rights to their authors, allowing for posting in open access repositories. We thank them. The proposals we make here do not require any changes in practice for these publishers. However, some publishers do not offer flexible reuse rights, or offer such rights only as a matter of policy rather than securing them legally through the author’s signed agreement. The effort to include author rights language in library content licenses is an attempt to address these inconsistencies among publishers, to provide a common approach that can simplify highly varied and complex author rights language, and ensure that all authors at our institutions can openly share their work.

Until all publishers have changed their practices to allow for flexible reuse and open sharing, we believe it is essential to continue to raise the issues of author rights in new ways and consider new approaches. We see no harm to authors or publishers in this particular method, and hope that our efforts will have the effect of making research publications more widely available to the public.

February 26, 2011

An interview with Ivy Anderson and Julia Blixrud on Stanford’s “Fairly Used” blog

Mary Minow recently interviewed Ivy Anderson and Julia Blixrud about this project. Check out A new twist — securing authors’ rights when negotiating content licenses: an interview with Julia Blixrud, ARL and Ivy Anderson, University of California.

February 18, 2011

ARL press release about this project

See New Author Rights in Content Licenses blog for the original official ARL announcement which is reprinted below.

For immediate release:
January 5, 2011

For more information, contact:
Julia Blixrud
Association of Research Libraries

New Author Rights in Content Licenses Blog
Washington DC— An ad hoc working group has created a new blog to share and discuss draft standard author rights language for library content licenses. This language is intended to be used by libraries and consortia as they negotiate contracts with content vendors in order to ensure that authors at these institutions retain consistent rights to make educational and scholarly uses of their own publications.

Interest in this model language was first expressed at a 2009 meeting regarding policy development for open-access repositories sponsored by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL). Subsequently, the ad hoc working group developed model language for use by those who license content for libraries.

The language consists of a license clause that retains rights for authors to use their own work and provides definitions for terms used in the clause. An article by Ivy Anderson providing background on the development of the language appears in ARL’s April 2010 Research Library Issues http://publications.arl.org/s68n7/12.

At their meetings in April 2010, the ARL Reshaping Scholarly Communication Steering Committee supported the draft language and the ARL Board endorsed use of it by member libraries.

The blog contains the model language in a form that can be downloaded for use in existing content licenses. It also provides a place for comments about the license clause language and its use. Other sections of the blog list adopters and endorsers, as well as related efforts. The blog can be found at https://authorrights.wordpress.com/.

See New Author Rights in Content Licenses blog for the original official ARL announcement which is reprinted below.

February 18, 2011

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