Taylor & Francis survey reveals clear need for author choice of licensing options for Open Access publication of their articles

In a survey conducted by Taylor & Francis, authors were canvassed about their opinions and behaviour about licensing, reuse, peer review and metrics in relation to Open Access. (OA)

In the second of a series of Press Releases on the themes and findings of this OA Survey, Taylor & Francis investigate what authors think about licensing options when publishing in Open Access Journals.

Findings around licensing options for Open Access publication

Authors were asked to select their most preferred, and second-most preferred licences, as well as their least preferred licence from a list of licences commonly used for OA publication, with a short description of each. When taking first and second-preferences into account - the following was clear:

  • The most popular licensing option is the Exclusive Licence to Publish - chosen by 51% of authors
  • The second most popular licence was the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivs (CC BY-NC-ND) - selected by 46% of respondents.
  • The least preferred licensing option was the Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC-BY) – as indicated by 52% of respondents.

Clustering in Licence Preferences

There was an interesting relationship between Exclusive Licence to Publish and Copyright Assignment. Where Copyright Assignment was the first preference, Exclusive Licence to Publish was the most common second choice, chosen by 60% of respondents. In turn, where Copyright Assignment was the first choice, 70% of respondents opted for Exclusive Licence to Publish as their second choice. Similarly, those opting for CC BY-NC-ND as their first choice generally chose the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial (CC BY-NC) licence as their second most preferred licence (and vice versa).

Regional and Subject Differences

Regional breakdowns for the most and least preferred licences can be viewed in Supplement 1 of the report along with breakdowns for all countries and subjects with more than 100 respondents. The distribution of least preferred choices does vary with subject, region and country, though CC-BY remains the most common answer in almost all cases, the exception being Library & Information Sciences, for whom the most common answer was Copyright Assignment.

In terms of the most preferred licence, the largest differences can be seen in the proportions of respondents choosing CC BY-NC-ND, Exclusive Licence to Publish and Copyright Assignment. Respondents from the fields of Computer Sciences and Library & Information Sciences have perhaps the most strikingly different response patterns with a more favourable view of CC BY-NC than any other subjects (not however, that there were only 111 respondents from Computer Sciences so this finding may lack robustness).

The full subject and regional breakdowns relating to the distribution of licence preferences can be found herewww.tandf.co.uk/journals/explore/open-access-survey-supp1.pdf

What do authors want?

Overall, the data suggests authors could be satisfied by offering a mixture of the traditional (Exclusive Licence to Publish / Copyright Assignment) and the new (CC BY-NC-ND / CC BY-NC). There seems an apparent need to address those reservations expressed by authors who cite the CC BY licence as their least preferred option.

Taylor & Francis offer authors a choice of licences

Taylor & Francis have taken this feedback from our author community into account in guiding future policies and strategies. “It is clear that we need to offer a wide range of author choice of licensing to satisfy our authors in the range of different subject communities, and from different parts of the world with their varying government and funder mandates”, says Dr David Green, Global Journals Publishing Director.

In the coming months, we will be reviewing our use of Copyright Assignments and Exclusive Licences for authors publishing their articles in subscription-based journal titles. Although we share some of the concerns of our authors around CC-BY, we also recognize the importance of adhering to funder mandates. Consequently, CC-BY will be offered as a licence choice by over 90% of our journals to those authors publishing on an open access basis. We will also offer the CC BY-NC licence for authors publishing in our Open portfolio, and a modified version of the CC BY-NC-ND licence to those publishing on an OA basis in our Open Select (hybrid OA) portfolio.

The basic results from the full survey and a copy of the questionnaire can be found here and is available under a Creative Commons Attribution licence:

www.tandf.co.uk/journals/pdf/open-access-survey-march2013.pdf

Follow us on Twitter for the latest news on the survey @TandFOpen (#oasurvey).

Visit our newsroom at: http://www.tandfonline.com/page/press-releases

For more information, please contact:
Victoria Wright, Communications Manager, Taylor & Francis Group Journals
email: victoria.wright@tandf.co.uk

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life. As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

About Us

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life. As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioral Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine. From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

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