Negotiate author rights

Consider using addenda to a standard publisher’s agreement to request a bundle of key rights you will need to share your article. The following examples offer contract language you may draw from to create your own addendum, or you may use one verbatim.

The SPARC Author Addendum is a legal instrument that authors may use to modify their publisher agreements, enabling them to keep selected key rights to their articles, such as:

  • Distributing copies in the course of teaching and research,
  • Posting the article on a personal or institutional Web site, or
  • Creating derivative works.

The Science Commons: Scholar’s Copyright Addendum Engine is another handy tool to help you negotiate author rights. Use it to generate language customized to your manuscript, including a range of access options.

Each addendum gives you non-exclusive rights to create derivative works from your Article and to reproduce, distribute, publicly perform, and publicly display your article in connection with your teaching, conference presentations, lectures, other scholarly works, and professional activities. However, they differ with respect to how soon you can make the final published version available and whether you can authorize others to re-use your work in various ways.

The Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC), a consortium of 13 American universities, offers a model addendum to publication agreements that “affirms the rights of authors to share their work in a variety of circumstances, including posting versions of the work in institutional or disciplinary repositories.” This addendum may be modified on a case-by-case basis, as needed, but it offers contract language that ensures authors greater control over their scholarly output.


Deposit your research and data in MARS

What is MARS?

The Mason Archival Repository Service (MARS) is a service of Mason Publishing and Data Services at the George Mason University Libraries. MARS provides access to the intellectual work of the George Mason University community, archiving Electronic Theses and Dissertations by graduate students at Mason, faculty research publications, and data files.

Why take advantage of MARS?

  • Create a permanent record of your work.
  • Avoid data loss and server maintenance. Not only do we make sure your research isn’t lost on a hard drive crash, we make sure it’s available in current, usable data formats.
  • Increase your impact. Your work will be easy to find in web services like Google Scholar.
  • Migrate your print research into the digital world. We can help you digitize your analog materials and make them available online (depending on copyright).

What can you archive in MARS?

Many journal publishers allow you to deposit preprint (before peer-review) or postprint (final draft after peer-review) versions of published articles in a repository like MARS. Some allow you to archive the publisher’s final version.

In addition to formally published scholarship, consider archiving presentations, working papers, blog posts, and podcasts. We can handle text, image, video, and audio formats.

Consider sharing data that supports your publications by depositing it in or another digital repository. Some granting agencies require applicants to include a data management plan to explain if, how, and when research data will be shared. Learn more about Mason’s Data Services.

Confused about copyright? We can help you sort it out.

Whether you want to increase the circulation of your scholarship or you need help complying with Open Access mandates for your research data and publications, we are here to help. To start publishing your content in MARS click here to use our online form.