From a policy perspective, the very best allow authors to retain as much of their rights as possible - for example, to self-archive pre-prints, and replace with the final peer-reviewed version as soon as possible, generally before publication. Authors should be allowed to retain copyright to the greatest extent possible. A recent study funded by JISC/SURF, Towards good practices of copyright in Open Access Journals by Esther Hoorn and Maurits van der Graaf, found, among other things, that a large majority (71%) of authors want to keep their copyright (thanks to Peter Suber's Open Access News). Restrictions on duplicate publishing for commercial purposes at about the same time as original publication are reasonable. Allowing either author or publisher to re-use the work for future commercial purposes is a good idea as well.
From a procedural perspective, the best author's instructions are simple, brief, easy to read, and easy to locate on the publishers' website. The ideal is to actively encourage authors to self-archive, and to automate deposit in the author's institutional repository where possible.
The rating system is a five-star system, with one representing the lowest score and 5 the highest. The ratings are not meant to be taken too seriously. Every publisher mentioned is included as a role model. Charleston Advisor is very generous in allowing authors to retain rights. The ACRL instructions are a model for brevity and clarity.
BioMedCentral, however, deserves special mention. After receiving the highest score to date, and the highest score possible (5 stars), BMC responded to comments about the imperfect of their author instructions by working hard to improve their procedures! BMC does automate deposit in the author's institutional repository (with the cooperation of the IR, of course). BMC is also a role model for vendor responsiveness to suggestions for improvement, in my opinion.
Kudos to the American Diabetes Assocation
ACRL's College and Research Libraries / College and Research Libraries News
4.5 Stars for Haworth Press
BioMedCentral: ratings and discussion messages
5 stars for BMC Indeed!
BMC: Bernd-Christoph Kaemper March 19, 2005
BMC: by Matthew Cockerill, March 18 (2)
BMC: Matthew Cockerill, March 18 (1)
5 stars for BMC
BMC: Bernd-Christoph Kaemper
BMC: Brian Simboli
5 stars for BMC?
Initial invitation to discussion
Last updated September 1, 2005.
This post reflects my personal opinion only and does not represent the opinions or policy of the BC Electronic Library Network or the Simon Fraser University Library.