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VTechWorks Policies: Copyright and Licensing

VTechWorks Policies document the practices that provide the infrastructure to the repository. These and other policies apply to content directly deposited into VTechWorks, to content ingested into VTechWorks in other systems, and to content automatically

VT Policy 13000

An author or creator of a work automatically owns copyright in that work once it exists in a fixed form.

Virginia Tech faculty and students own copyright in the works they have created as described in VT Policy 13000, http://www.policies.vt.edu/13000.pdf. According to this policy, for “the traditional results of academic scholarship, i.e., textbooks, literary works, artistic creations and artifacts” -- that is, the kinds of works most commonly deposited in VTechWorks -- “the IP rights remain with the author(s) and the University rights are limited to free (no cost) use in teaching, research, extension, etc. in perpetuity."

Practice, however, indicates that if authors transfer or relinquish their copyrights to third parties (e.g., publishers), those authors may no longer have the right to deposit their own published works.

Depositor's Responsibility

  • It is the responsibility of the depositor to ensure that s/he has the legal right to add a work in VTechWorks under the terms of U.S. copyright law and under the terms of any existing contracts related to the work. I
  • Many authors give away their copyrights as a condition of publication. Journals, publishers, and conference proceedings often make contractual restrictions on which version (e.g., submitted version, publisher's version, etc.) of a published work may be deposited in an institutional repository such as VTechWorks. Authors should not assume that they have the right to deposit their own published works in VTechWorks. Authors should check their publishing contract to see what rights they have retained. Consult the Sherpa/RoMEO database for journal and publisher deposit and the Help page for more information on deposit rights.
  • When a work has multiple authors, usually every author owns the copyright to the entire work and, therefore, may deposit the work in VTechWorks without needing to ask permission of the other authors.
  • Virginia Tech itself owns the copyright in most administrative documents produced by Virginia Tech staff in the normal course of their duties (e.g., reports, policies, news releases). The individual VT staff member does not usually own the copyright to these works made as a condition of employment (i.e., works for hire). Such material may be deposited in VTechWorks by any member of the Virginia Tech community.
  • All depositors must agree to the non-exclusive distribution license given below before VTechWorks will host their works. This license grants Virginia Tech the right to host the work without affecting the author’s copyright.

VTechWorks Non-exclusive Distribution License

In order for VTechWorks to distribute, reproduce, or translate your submission, you must agree to the following terms.

NON-EXCLUSIVE DISTRIBUTION LICENSE

By signing and submitting this license, you (the author(s) or copyright owner) grant to Virginia Tech's University Libraries (VTUL) permission to store and provide access to your submission (including the abstract).

You agree that VTUL may, without changing the content, translate the submission to any medium or format for the purpose of preservation.

You also agree that VTUL may keep more than one copy of this submission for purposes of security, backup and preservation.

You represent that the submission is your original work, and that you have the right to grant the rights contained in this license. You also represent that your submission does not, to the best of your knowledge, infringe upon anyone's copyright.

If the submission contains material for which you do not hold copyright, you represent that you have obtained the unrestricted permission of the copyright owner to grant VTUL the rights required by this license, and that such third-party owned material is clearly identified and acknowledged within the text or content of the submission.

If the submission is based upon work that has been sponsored or supported by an agency or organization other than Virginia Tech, you represent that you have fulfilled any right of review or other obligations required by such contract or agreement.

VTUL will clearly identify your name(s) as the author(s) or owner(s) of the submission, and will not make any alteration, other than as allowed by this license, to your submission.

 

Content and Contact

Content: https://vtechworks.lib.vt.edu          Contact: vtechworks@vt.edu

Delegates

  • Authors may ask others to deposit works in VTechWorks on their behalf, and these depositors are  considered delegates (i.e., proxies) for the authors. VTechWorks staff and Virginia Tech librarians are de facto delegates for any and all members of the Virginia Tech community.
  • Delegates who deposit content on behalf of authors should make every effort to determine whether the work can legally be deposited in VTechWorks.

Creative Commons

Copyright owners and their delegates may elect to add a Creative Commons license to their works so that members of the public who find the work online will know if they have been given explicit permission to copy, modify, distribute or perform the work under certain conditions.