University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who owns the creative work?

You own it.  UMass Amherst doesn’t claim ownership of “exempted scholarly works,” which include textbooks, class notes, research proposals, classroom presentations and instructions, research articles, research monographs, student theses and dissertations, paintings, drawings, sculpture, musical compositions and performances, dramatic works and performances, poetry, and popular fiction and nonfiction.

If you have created a work that is not on this list, it may still be an exempted scholarly work; ownership is reviewed on a fair and reasonable case-by-case basis. 

Who keeps the money?

You keep all the money.  UMass Amherst doesn’t get a share of money earned from the creative works you own. 

You will be free to keep all income for yourself, and you are free to work out income sharing with your co-creators as you may agree between you; and whether such sharing is warranted or legally required will be up to you (preferably in consultation with an attorney). 

Are there any fees?

There are no fees.  There is no charge to faculty or co-creators, departments or deans for these services. 

The costs of providing these services are covered entirely by the Technology Transfer Office. You may have some expenses for copyright or trademark registration, or for obtaining advice from an outside attorney about a contract, but the Technology Transfer Office services are free of charge.

So why is UMass Amherst doing this?

It’s simple: we love the creative arts, and want them to grow and prosper. 

Protecting creative works with copyrights, trademarks and sensible contracts encourages and enables creative artists like you to distribute, display and perform their works. 

Our services benefit the public by increasing its ability to experience, enjoy and own copies of UMass Amherst creative works.  They benefit UMass, its schools, departments and faculty by increasing public recognition that UMass Amherst is an outstanding source of works of creative expression.  And they help advance the career interests of UMass Amherst faculty and students by expanding their recognition by the public, their peers and potential future sponsors, collaborators and employers.