On the Treatment of Copyrighted Materials

The copyright of articles and related materials published in Gengo Kenkyu

The Linguistic Society of Japan (LSJ), as part of our activity to contribute to the development of scientific study of language, has published the journal Gengo Kenkyu since 1939. In addition to being distributed to the members, Gengo Kenkyu is also sold to institutions such as libraries and non-member individuals. Needles to say, the reason for distributing the journal through commercial channels is to convey the research results to as many people as possible and not for benefit.

So far, as for the articles and related materials published in Gengo Kenkyu (‘copyrighted materials’ hereafter), we haven’t asked each individual author for permission to use the copyrighted materials. As far as academic journals are concerned, we have regarded that it is customary to assume that we have been granted the right to duplicate the published materials. This assumption seems to have worked, as we rarely made duplication of the copyrighted materials.

However, recent development of such new technology as the Internet opens the way to a wider possibility of utilization of the copyrighted materials. We have, therefore, starting with the No. 124 (2003) issue of Gengo Kenkyu, indicated the copyright sign (©) at the colophon of the journal. However, it is certain that there is still a great deal of vagueness as to the status of copyright of the copyrighted materials. We fear there would be misunderstandings or confusion between the authors and the LSJ concerning the treatment of copyright when the LSJ decides to publicize the articles published in the journal through the Internet or when the authors intend to make their work open to public.

We proposed the LSJ Regulations on the Treatment of Copyrighted Materials in November, 2006. The following is the summary of the regulations.

  1. The Regulations make it clear that the authors grant the LSJ permission to use the right of publication of the copyrighted materials published in Gengo Kenkyu and that of making them publicly available through the Internet (the right of reproduction and the right of public transmission).
  2. The LSJ will use the rights thus permitted by the authors for the benefit of its members including the authors.
  3. The LSJ will not object to the authors’ reproducing their own copyrighted materials for reasons of the permission granted by the authors, on the condition that the LSJ is informed of the reproduction in advance and that the source of the materials is clearly indicated.
  4. The Regulations will also be applied retroactively to the copyrighted materials published in Gengo Kenkyu before they are enacted.

We then requested the authors whose copyrighted materials have been published in Gengo Kenkyu up to Issue No. 129 to consent to the retroactive application of the LSJ Regulations on the Treatment of Copyrighted Materials to their copyrighted materials in the categories of “articles, reviews, and forum papers” and the abstracts of the oral presentations at the annual meetings. Also, if they cannot consent, we asked them to contact our office by the end of February, 2007. After sending the request by mail to each member of the LSJ and soliciting objection through our web site, we have received no objection. We appreciate your understanding.

Although the period of notification is over now, if you didn’t have a chance to see our request, we will still accept your objections. If you have objections to the retroactive application of the Regulations to your copyrighted materials, we would like you to inform our office, either by mail (Office of the Linguistic Society of Japan, Shimodachiuri, Ogawa-Higashi-iru, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto 602-8048, JAPAN), FAX (+81-75-415-3662), or e-mail (lsj@nacos.com). When you do this, please give us the following information:

(1) Your name
(2) Contact address
(3) Title(s) of the copyrighted material(s)
(4) The number(s) of the issue(s) of publication in Gengo Kenkyu
(5) Name(s) of the author(s) (if coauthored or your name has since changed, unnecessary if the same as (1))

As stated above, the Regulations are intended solely to enhance the contribution of the LSJ and its members to the development of scientific study of language by increasing the chance that the copyrighted materials published in Gengo Kenkyu are more widely distributed to the researchers and other interested parties. It is by no means an attempt to restrict the rights of the authors and the members in general. We ask your understanding of our purpose and hope sincerely that you permit us to use your copyrights.