Paul L. Caron

Friday, April 17, 2009

The W&L Free Alternative to bepress/ExpressO and SSRN

John Doyle of the Washington & Lee Law Library has developed LexOpus, a free article repository and law review article submission system as an alternative to bepress/ExpressO and SSRN:  

The aim of LexOpus is to assist authors and law journals with the submissions process. The system allows authors to submit their finished works to author-selected law journals, or it allows authors to post works and make them available as "open to offers," inviting law journals to make offers. The latter process being most suited to works in progress.

The difference between LexOpus and other submission methods is that LexOpus is designed to NOT send simultaneous submissions. LexOpus offers an alternative to authors wishing to minimizing the practice of simultaneous submissions to multiple journals. What LexOpus will do is convey an author's exclusive offer to each chosen journal in sequence for one week (six weeks for peer-reviewed journals that require more time). On rejection by a journal, or the elapse of the journal's exclusive period, the work will move on to the author's next chosen journal.

Authors are guaranteeing that should a journal accept the author's offer during the journal's exclusive period that the author will enter into a publishing agreement with the journal. Offers from authors will continue past the journal's exclusive period until either the author withdraws the offer or the journal rejects. What does terminate after each journal's exclusive period is not the offer itself but the exclusive nature of the offer.

The journal which currently has an exclusive period always has acceptance priority over all other journals in the author's submissions list.

When an author uploads a work the author indicates that the work should, or should not, be 'open to offers' (this decision can be modified later). This means that journals, on their LexOpus homepage, will see the work listed should the subject of the work intersect with the subject interests of the journal. Journals are then able to make an offer for the work, or else remove it from their homepage if not interested. However, if the author has selected journals to submit to then, while any journal has an exclusive submission, the work will not be available in "open to offers" lists. Authors might receive offers from multiple journals and any publishing agreement would be formed if, and when, the author accepts one of those journal offers. Any unsolicited offer from a journal will lapse after four weeks if the author does not accept or reject the journal's offer. ...

In addition to uploading a work for submission purposes, an author is free to simply upload a work to make it available for general reading.

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