This section records the gossip I've received or dug up myself about the copyright policies of certain journals. You might find it of some use, but you should treat it as gossip. If you want to be absolutely certain about a journal's policy, contact the journal yourself. If you discover that something below is incorrect, please send an email to William Stein ([email protected]). You are also encouraged to send me information about a journal.
Date: Tue, 28 May 2002 07:03:10 -0500 From: Gwen van der Heide
Subject: Author Gateway - Helping authors get published As a subscriber to the ContentsDirect e-mail service, containing tables of contents of Discrete Applied Mathematics, we would like to introduce you to a new online tool for authors: The Author Gateway http://authors.elsevier.com/journal/dam [...] You can also read all about Elsevier Science's liberal copyright policy, which includes permission to post manuscripts on preprint servers, the author's homepage, or the author's institute's website. [Italics added by me.] Best regards, Gwen van der Heide
I will be assuming that the Elsevier policy is the one to follow, and will leave the article on the arXiv until I'm told to take it down.
I would like to say, though, that as a graduate student I do not feel I can follow some of the advice given by other mathematicians to "shop around". I feel that I need to be published more than anything, and that I must accept whatever terms I am given. Maybe if I were ten years older I would feel able to not publish in a journal, but right now I will sacrifice my principles to get an article into print. Update: I have just got an email from the Journal of Number Theory about their copyright policy, which says that I do still have the rights although they weren't mentioned in the form I signed. So that's cleared up. You might want to add a note to that effect :)
According to the Copyright section of
page, "The Author will be asked, upon acceptance of an article, to
transfer copyright to the publisher." The actual copyright form that I
recieved seemed to indicate that in particular I would lose the right to
put the paper on my web page, and subsequent emails between myself and the
legal department at Kluwer (Compositio's publishers) seemed to confirm
this was the case. I did what seemed to be the natural thing at the time,
and that was to simply withdraw the paper and submit it to another
journal, and I sent an apology and an explanation to Compositio.
But on telling my story to some of the editors I knew at Compositio, I started off some kind of small "internal enquiry", which ended up with my getting several emails from the editor-in-chief of Compositio, and also a very apologetic personal email from the Mathematics publishing editor at Kluwer. The gist of these emails was that the legal department had been rather heavy-handed, and that it certainly would be possible to submit a paper to Compositio and also to keep a copy on my web page. Hence at the end of the day, I feel Compositio treated me rather well, even though the circumstances ended up with my not publishing my paper there.
Finally, it is worth mentioning that Compositio will, in the near future, be published by the London Mathematical Society, and the policy of the LMS seems to be that they do not object to authors putting copies of papers on their web pages.
I guess one natural response to the question they pose about bothering
to publish if the paper is on your web page is that journals last
forever and God only knows how web distribution will work in 20 years
or after the author is dead... maybe they don't realize that
mathematicians (unlike any other scientists, as far as I can tell)
actually do often look back at papers that are 20-30 years old (or
Plus, there must be approximately epsilon individuals who subscribe to these outrageously over-priced journals anyway! The university libraries are their only clients, and the libraries aren't going to cut the subscriptions over reasons like this (esp. if they already let Inv. Math. get away with murder for charging such high rates...). And it's not as if we go to the library less often than people did in the past (the only difference is that preprint distribution is infinitely faster). Geez.
By the way, one of the most offensive agreements I've run across in Academic Press's. They let one put papers on personal web pages (not archives), but they require one to assert that their journal is "the only definitive repository of the content that has been certified and accepted after peer review". This really bugs me, because I have just the opposite opinion: the arXived versions of my papers are exactly what was peer reviewed and what I intended to publish, but in at least one case the published version contains a typo introduced by copyeditors at the publisher. I'm not going to put anything on my web page asserting that their version is definitive when they may have edited it at the last minute without my permission!
Sorry for the rant--copyright really bugs me. For that matter,
journal publishing does in general. I categorically avoid publishing
in journals run by big commercial publishers, regardless of their
copyright agreements, and avoid also academic or non-profit publishers
with offensive agreements (like SIAM).
|"The copyright transfer covers the exclusive right to reproduce and distribute the contribution, including reprints, translations, photographic reproductions, microform, electronic form (offline, online), or any other reproductions of similar nature."|
|"The Author may publish his/her contribution on his/her personal Web page provided that he/she creates a link to the above mentioned volume of LNCS at the Springer-Verlag server or to the LNCS series Homepage (URL: http://www.springer.de/comp/lncs/index.html) and that together with this electronic version it is clearly pointed out, by prominently adding "� Springer-Verlag", that the copyright for this contribution is held by Springer. From the Publisher's point of view, it would be desirable that the full-text version be made available from the Author's Web page only after a delay of 12 months following the publication of the book, whereas such a delay is not required for the abstract."|
I suppose this means that one is not allowed to post to a preprint
server, although I have to admit that I ignored that detail. (I think
I did put the copyright notice in.) I doubt that the sentence which
says "...it would desirable..." has any legal meaning whatsoever.
------------------------------------------------------- From Michael Zieve ([email protected]): Today I called Academic Press requesting permission to post to the arxiv some papers I had published in their journals. They refused to grant me this permission, even when I informed them that it meant I would never again publish in their journals. I am posting this article to inform other mathematicians of Academic Press's policy of hindering mathematical communication. Hopefully this post will encourage other mathematicians to think twice about publishing in Academic Press journals. Mike Zieve Here is a list of Academic Press journals: Advances in Applied Mathematics Advances in Mathematics Applied and Computational Harmonic Analysis European Journal of Combinatorics Finite Fields and Their Applications Historia Mathematica Information and Computation Journal of Algebra Journal of Algorithms Journal of Approximation Theory Journal of Combinatorial Theory Journal of Complexity Journal of Computational Physics Journal of Differential Equations Journal of Functional Analysis Journal of Mathematical Analysis and Applications Journal of Multivariate Analysis Journal of Number Theory Journal of Symbolic Computation ------------------------------------------------------- From John McCarthy ([email protected]) Newsgroups: sci.math.research That's one way to do it. I put an article of mine on my web site and sent email, claiming it as fair use, and challenging them to sue me. I heard no more from them. Back in the early days, ACM had a policy that articles couldn't be put on web pages accessible to more than 800 people. I put my basic Lisp paper on my web site and challenged them to sue. The reply was, "I hereby give you permission." So far as I know, the publishers have contented themselves with empty threats. ------------------------------------------------------- From Greg Kuperberg ([email protected]) I wouldn't put it in exactly these terms myself, but since Mike mentions it, I'm in the same position. I would like to arXiv my old papers but Academic Press refused permission. Let me note, for those who haven't heard, that Elsevier just bought Academic Press (as part of Harcourt). So one question is whether the anti-free-archive policy extends across all Elsevier journals, or if it is only a pre-acquisition holdover. ------------------------------------------------------- Greg Kuperberg ([email protected]) Kevin Buzzard wrote: > I found it very surprising that I, as a random mathematician, could, > by carefully telling the right people, apparently change the policy > of a publishing company. But did you actually change Kluwer's policy, or did they fall back to a second tier of policy for complainers? I.e. does the standard Kluwer copyright agreement now address your concerns? Personally I find the copyright policies of some of the commercial publishers is as clear as mud. There's a lot of "I'll have to ask higher management", and "we'd prefer not but there is no strict rule", and "for you we'll make an exception". Not to mention the bad cop/good cop routine that you got. Not to mention unanswered e-mail, another common outcome. Not to mention saying yes to one author and no to the next one. I am tired of haggling. Many mathematicians want to freely distribute their work. The publishers should clearly state their policies and stick to their word. Indeed the publishers compete for submissions at least as much as for subscriptions, so why not have them compete on their copyright policy? I have compiled an index of links to the copyright forms of a number of math publishers: http://front.math.ucdavis.edu/journals#copyright As you can see there are some big differences. In particular the AMS and some of the free electronic journals offer exemplary terms. My advice is to shop for the best terms from the get-go.