The Motion Explained

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The FAS Motion Itself (at #5 on page 3 of pdf)

Highlights of the Motion

How "Open Access" Would Work

Each member of the faculty would grant to the University "a non-exclusive, irrevocable, paid-up, worldwide license to exercise any and all rights under copyright relating to each of his or her scholarly articles, in any medium, and to authorize others to do the same, provided that the articles are not sold for a profit."

The University would then be able to "make the article available to the public in an open-access repository."

What are Faculty Members giving to the University?

As mentioned above, the authors are giving a "non-exclusive, irrevocable, paid-up, worldwide license."

  • non-exclusive - The license given doesn't prevent the copyright holder (the faculty member) from giving any other party another non-exclusive version of the license.
  • irrevocable - The license given can not be later revoked by the copyright holder. See: Why is this license irrevocable in this wiki.
  • paid-up - The license given is considered fully paid and thus no future compensation will ever be given to the copyright holder for this license.
  • worldwide - The license given is good worldwide.

What Documents the Policy Applies To

The policy would apply to any article authored or co-authored by faculty members, except for (1) articles completed before the policy is adopted; (2) articles for which the author "entered into an incompatible licensing or assignment agreement before the adoption of this policy"; and (3) articles for which the author makes a written request to the Dean to waive the policy (such requests would be granted automatically). It would not apply to works other than scholarly articles, so books, fictional works, etc would be exempted as well.

What the Policy Would Require of Faculty Members

The policy would create two new demands on faculty members: (1) on completing an article, they must provide electronic copies of the article at no charge to the appropriate University office; (2) if the author does not want the article to be subject to the policy, the author must make a written request to the Dean (which, again, will be granted automatically).