After you publish your work in a journal, do you still own the copyright to your paper?
Can you send a colleague a copy of your work through email?
You'd like to use a chart or graphic from your paper in a presentation, are you allowed to do that?
Are you allowed to post a copy of your paper on your own website? institutional repository? Academia.edu/ResearchGate?
Many authors of scholarly articles may not realize it, but some journals may require that you transfer your copyright (not just of the PDF final version, but sometimes to the drafts of the article as well) to the publisher upon publication. Signing away your copyright often prevents authors from making freely available copies of their own work.
Publishing your Work
Before your book or article is published, you automatically own the copyright of the work. Publishers request that you assign, grant or license the copyright to them – temporarily or perpetually. Publishers do this through:
Contracts are not written in stone; they are dialogues between you and your publisher. If there are clauses that you don't agree to - cross them out and initial the change to the document. Consider appending the SPARC Addendum (see below) to your contract.
The SPARC Addendum modifies your publishing agreement to allow you to keep certain rights:
For example, Author may make and distribute copies in the course of teaching and research and may post the Article on personal or institutional Web sites and in other open access digital repositories.
How to use the addendum?
If you want to make your article accessible to more readers, publishing in an Open Access journal is one option. Another is to share your article in an online repository, such as TRUSpace. Refer to your publishing agreement to find out if you can share your article in TRUSpace or another repository, and which version you can share (preprint, postprint, or final version). Ask a librarian if you are unsure.
Academic Social Networking Sites
Not all repositories are open access repositories. When you sign up for academic social networking sites, you are granting to them very important rights to your work. It is critical to consult your publishing agreement prior to uploading a text on academic social networking sites such as ResearchGate or Academia.edu because different publishers allow different versions of academic papers to be uploaded to repositories and author websites: the author’s pre-print, the author’s accepted version, or the published version.