Misconception: If I find an article online and I don’t have to pay to access it, then it’s free.
Reality: In some cases this is true, but if you access the article via your library’s website, it may only be free to you. Libraries generally pay a hefty price to ensure your free access to the articles you need.
Misconception: Since electronic journals cost so much less than print journals, why not just cancel all the print journals and go all electronic?
Reality: Where do we start? Historically, electronic journals have generally only cost slightly less than the paper version. More recently, the electronic versions tend to cost more (sometimes much more!), with the print sometimes being just a minor add-on. Another important consideration is making sure that the journals are archived for future use. At this time, there are several initiatives looking at archiving electronic materials, but we err on the side of caution until one or more of them are proven successful.
Misconception: When I sign a copyright agreement, I’m essentially signing away all rights to my work.
Reality: Faculty members are often faced with publishing agreements containing a clause transferring copyright in the work to the publisher, but transferring copyright doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Faculty members may wish to negotiate for an agreement that would allow them, at the very least, to use their own works for their teaching and research purposes.
Misconception: If my article is published in a journal, I can’t deposit it into an institutional repository.
Reality: In fact, many publishers allow their authors to deposit their papers in institutional repositories or post them to their websites.
Misconception: The system is so much bigger than I am– how much can what I do really matter?
Reality: You *can* make a difference! A scholarly revolution is underway that will enable you to get a greater return from your research. All you have to do is share it.
Misconception: Open access journals are not peer-reviewed.
Reality: The term ‘open access’ applies to your right to use a journal without restriction. It does not apply to the ability of authors to get their papers published in a journal. Some open access journals are peer-reviewed, while others are not.