Copyright and Fair Use: the Basics

Resources for Basic Copyright Information-- this is not legal advice.


Please be advised: Information and/or links provided on this site are not and do not constitute legal advice and are for informational purposes only.  Seek legal advice from a licensed attorney to address any legal questions or concerns.

Publishing options

In addition to traditional publication that assigns most, if not all, copyright to the publisher, authors of books, journals and Web resources have other options as well.  Below are links to some of the more well-known options. 

Options for your Dissertation/Thesis

ProQuest/UMI offers different options when you publish with them.  Their Publishing Agreement outlines these options.  Carefully consider which option suits your needs.

"Section III. Publishing Options & Signature
Select the publishing options below that best fit your interests and scholarly publishing obligations.

Traditional Publishing

  • I want to make my work widely available and I want to be eligible to receive royalties on the sale of my work.
  • I understand that I must maintain a current mailing address with ProQuest/UMI in order to be eligible to receive royalties.
  • I understand that the ProQuest/UMI fee for Traditional Publishing is ..........

Open Access Publishing

  •  I want the broadest possible dissemination of my work, and I want to provide free global access to the electronic copy of my work via the Internet.
  •  I understand that I will not be eligible to receive royalties.
  •  I understand that the ProQuest/UMI fee for Open Access Publishing of Master’s thesis is ........."

taken from:

FORMS & INSTRUCTIONS for Submitting your Doctoral Dissertation or Master’s Thesis

Open Access Journal Articles

Many publishers now allow authors to choose an "open access" option when publishing articles in their journals (that are not themselves open access titles).  This usually involves an additional publication fee, but then allows your article to be read by anyone anytime, even when their institution does NOT subscribe to the journal.  There have been several studies done that show open access articles are highly cited.  So if you are publishing with the following publishers you might want to consider this option.