Open Access Policy Guidelines and Frequently Asked Questions

Complying with the Policy 

In order to comply with Miami University Libraries Open Access Policy, library faculty authors should:

  • Always deposit each article in Miami University’s Scholarly Commons 
  • To avoid a conflicting transfer of copyright to the publisher and to protect yourself from breach of contract, we recommend that you use the Author Addendum to attach to the agreement with a publisher. 
  • You should deposit the final manuscript of your article in the Scholarly Commons whether or not you included the Author Addendum or the publisher accepted it. The article can be made available immediately or after a delay or kept “dark” depending on the publication agreement.

If the publisher will not accept the addendum or will not publish the article if it is subject to the Open Access License, you can always request a waiver of the Open Access Policy.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Is the university taking the rights to my writing? 

No. Authors still retain ownership and complete control of the copyright in their writings, subject only to Miami Universitys prior, nonexclusive license. You can exercise your copyrights in any way you see fit, including transferring them to a publisher if you so desire (However, if you do so, Miami would still retain its license and the right to distribute the article from its repository).

Does the policy apply to articles I wrote before the policy was adopted? 

No, it doesn’t apply to any articles that were completed before the policy was adopted, nor to any articles for which you entered into an incompatible publishing agreement before the policy was adopted. The policy also does not apply to any articles you write after leaving Miami.

Does the policy apply to co-authored papers? 

Yes. Each joint author of an article holds copyright in the article and, individually, has the authority to grant Miami a non-exclusive license. Joint authors are those who participate in the preparation of the article with the

intention that their contributions be merged into inseparable or interdependent parts of the whole.

If you are one of multiple authors of your article, you should inform your co-authors about the nonexclusive license in the article that you have granted Miami under the Open Access Policy. If they object to the license and cannot be convinced it is beneficial, you should direct that a waiver for the article be granted.

What is an “author’s final manuscript”? 

A final manuscript is the last document that you send the publisher, after the completion of the peer review process.

Even though this document might be almost identical to the published version of the paper, your manuscript is typically treated differently than the published version for purposes of licensing and copyright.

A final manuscript is sometimes referred to as a “post-print.” It shouldn’t be confused, however, with a “page proof.” Unlike a manuscript, the page proof is a document produced by a publisher for your review just prior to publication.

What if a journal publisher refuses to publish my article because of this prior license? 

You have a number of options. One is to obtain a waiver of the license under the policy. Alternatively, you can work to persuade the publisher that it should accept Miami Universitys non-exclusive license in order to be able to publish your article, or seek a different publisher. You can consult with a member of the Scholarly Communication Working Group (SCWG) for help in the process of working with publishers and addressing their specific concerns.

What is an author addendum?

An author addendum is a simple legal tool. The typical addendum is a short document, used to amend the agreement issued by a publisher. For more information on author addenda, please read Miami University Libraries publication Author Rights: A guide to securing your rights as a copyright holder.

How do I request a waiver of the Open Access Policy? 

To request a waiver, simply use the Waiver Generator and supply the information requested there. A confirmation notifying you of the waiver of

the policy will be sent back to you at the address you provide. Even if you are required by a publisher to waive the Open Access Policy as a condition of publication, chances are you can still make your article publicly available in Miamis Scholarly Commons, as explained further below. Thus, whether your article is under a waiver or not, you should still deposit the final manuscript in the Scholarly Commons. If your peer-reviewed article is subject to the NIH Public Access Policy or the NSF Public Access Policy because it arose, in whole or in part, from NIH or NSF-funded research, your obligations under these policies cannot be waived.

Should I include my article in the Scholarly Commons even if I have received a waiver for it? 

Yes. The Scholarly Commons accepts articles covered by the license granted to Miami University under the Open Access Policy, but also articles not covered by the license. Even if you take a waiver, the publisher’s agreement may provide, or you may be able to negotiate, sufficient rights to allow copies of your article to be made publicly available in the Scholarly Commons. The publisher may ask that certain conditions be met, some of which the repository can accommodate (for example, an embargo period during which the article will not be made publicly available). Information about publishers’ standard policies on open access is available from the SHERPA/RoMEO project (though Miami University has not verified the accuracy of that information).

Should I take the license to Miami University into account if I am seeking permission from a third party to incorporate the third party’s material (such as, for example, an image) in the published article?

Yes. If you conclude the third-party material cannot be incorporated in your article under fair use, and you therefore are seeking permission to use it, the permission should allow the material to be used as part of the article in all forms and media, including, without limitation, in publicly accessible electronic repositories.

Does this web site provide legal advice to me? 

No, this web site provides information and resources to help librarian faculty members and others understand the Open Access Policy and to assist in compliance, but does not provide individual legal advice. The Scholarly

Communication Working Group and members of the Personnel Committee also are not able to provide individual legal advice. If you wish legal advice about your copyrights or individual situation, you should consult your own attorney.