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Self-Archiving in Digital Commons: Rights Statements

The purpose of DigitalCommons@UMaine is to provide long-term access to the scholarly and creative output of University of Maine faculty and staff. Consult this suite of tutorial pages to learn how to archive your work.

Rights Statements

In an effort to prepare scholarly content for harvesting by the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA), the University of Maine’s institutional archive now provides two new fields for standardized rights statements. Inclusion of these rights statements is mandatory for an original work to be considered for inclusion in the DPLA.

Launched in April 2013, the DPLA project seeks to provide centralized, open access to digital holdings in repositories across America. To view content from Maine currently available in DPLA, please view the Digital Maine partnership.

Standardized Statements

The Digital Public Library of America adopted the standardized rights statements created by These standards provide information about the copyright status and user permissions for individual works. The rights statements are designed for both human and machine users, making use of sematic web technology.

There are three categories of Rights Statements: in copyright; no copyright; and other. These statements were developed to compliment the Licenses and Public Domain Tools of Creative Commons.

By default, University of Maine publications created and/or published after December 31, 1922 are under copyright. If you are posting University of Maine content in Digital Commons—photographs, course catalogs, unpublished works, etc.—that was created after 1922, we recommend you use the “In Copyright, Educational Use Permitted” rights statement.

Rights Statement Cheat Sheet

When entering metadata in Digital Commons, users are encouraged to copy and paste the appropriate Rights and Access Note in the text field before selecting the corresponding Rights Statement from the pull-down menu.

Rights Statement Pull Down Menu

If you have questions about a document’s copyright status or need assistance creating a custom Rights and Access Note, please contact your Subject Librarian.

In Copyright, Educational Use Permitted

For items produced or published by the University of Maine after December 31, 1922. When posting articles published in books, journals, or newspapers after 1922, utilize the copyright conditions cited by the publisher. For assistance determining copyright permissions for academic journals, please visit Sherpa/Romeo or contact your subject specialist.

Rights and Access Note: This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. In addition, no permission is required from the rights-holder(s) for non-commercial uses.

No Copyright in the United States

For items with no copyright in the United States (e.g. government documents; postage stamps), the following statement may be used.

Rights and Access Note: Rights assessment remains the responsibility of the researcher. No known restrictions on publication. 

No Known Copyright

For items published after December 31, 1922 (e.g. newspaper articles, books, photographs for which copyright has not been renewed by the creator’s family or estate)

Rights and Access Note: Rights assessment remains the responsibility of the researcher. No known restrictions on publication.

Copyright Undetermined

University of Maine faculty researchers are responsible to undertake due diligence when establishing the copyright status of full-text and other digital content uploaded in Digital Commons. If efforts to determine copyright status are unsuccessful, you may use the Copyright Undetermined rights statement.

Rights and Access Note: Rights assessment remains the responsibility of the researcher. No known restrictions on publication. 

For more information about additional Rights Statements.


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