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Citing the growing demand from the public and the scientific community for access to research data, The Rockefeller University Press has revised its copyright policy to allow authors to retain the rights to work published in its three journals. The policy, which became effective May 1, applies to all three Rockefeller University Press journals: The Journal of Cell Biology, The Journal of Experimental Medicine and The Journal of General Physiology.
The new policy allows authors to reuse their published work in any way and provides for third-party reuse under the terms of a Creative Commons license, say Mike Rossner, executive director of the press, and Emma Hill, executive editor of The Journal of Cell Biology. Hill and Rossner lay out the terms of the new policy in an editorial published in the May issues of all three journals.
Under the terms of the policy, authors may reuse their published work for any purpose, including commercial profit, as long as each use includes attribution to the original publication. Third parties can reuse and redistribute work published in Rockefeller University Press journals, without permission, for any noncommercial purpose, with the same requirement for attribution that applies to authors.
The new policy breaks with common practice among scientific publishers, the vast majority of which require authors to relinquish copyright to the publisher in full as a condition of publication. The press, which now retains licenses from its authors instead of copyright, made its first move toward policy reversal in July 2000, when it gave authors the right to post their articles on their own Web sites immediately after publication. Since January, 2001, the press has released all of its content to the public six months after publication, but permission was still required for any reuse beyond self-archiving.
“Our copyright and public-access policies simply acknowledge who did the work and who paid for it to be done,” says Rossner. “Clearly, the peer-review and publication processes add value to the work, but, in our opinion, that does not give the publisher an exclusive right to it.”
The entire article can be read at the above URL.