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Open Access and Scholarly Communications: Managing Your Rights

Created by Health Science Librarians

Keeping Your Copyrights

  • Author's Rights, Tout de Suite
  • Keep Your Copyrights: A Resource for Creators
  • SPARC Author Addendum

Determining Your Rights for Previously Published Work

If you transferred your copyright to the publisher at the time of publication, your right to re-use the content in teaching and publication may be restricted. To determine your rights, take the following steps:

  • If you have it, check your original publishing agreement.
  • Look for the specific publisher's policies on the SHERPA/RoMEO website.
  • Contact the publisher.

Regaining Rights To Your Books

Understanding Rights Reversion: When, Why, & How to Regain Copyright and Make Your Book More Available

"That book you published a few years ago is no longer selling like it used to, but it still contains useful information. Why don’t you ask your publisher for your rights back? You may be surprised to know that your publisher might be quite willing to give you back your rights if you ask. In fact, your publisher might also be quite willing to work with you to increase your book’s availability.

Don’t worry if you are unsure about how to approach your publisher. A new guide created by Authors Alliance will help you through the process, each step of the way."

Creative Commons Licensing

Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that enables you to grant the public permission to use your work under conditions of your choice. Creative Commons licenses do not replace copyright but work alongside it, allowing you to keep your copyrights while permitting certain uses of your work. You can choose to permit or deny commercial uses or your work, the creation of derivative works, and whether or not new works must be licensed under the same terms. To select a license for your work, try the Creative Commons License Chooser tool

Wanna Work Together? by Creative Commons is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license.

UNC Scholarly Communications Office

The Scholarly Communications Officer provides guidance, policy development, and advocacy to faculty, students, and staff on the following issues:

  • Copyright and fair use

  • Authors’ rights

  • Privacy rights

  • Open access

  • Policy related to scholarly material

For more information, visit the Scholarly Communications Office webpage, or contact Scholarly Communications Officer Anne Gilliland, MSLS, JD