As used in this policy, “trademarks” means PLOS’s logos, the names of its various offerings, journals, and projects, and the names PLOS and PLOS.org, PLOS’s word marks (collectively “PLOS Marks”).
This document (“Trademark Policy”) outlines the policy of the Public Library of Science (“PLOS”) regarding the use of the PLOS Marks. Any use of a PLOS Mark must be in accordance with this policy. Any use that does not comply with this policy is not authorized.
Overall Guidelines for Printed Materials and Websites
Trademarks exist to help consumers identify, and organizations publicize, the source of products. Consumers associate organizations and their trademarks with the quality of products and services provided by that organization. When others use an organization’s trademarks, consumers may become confused as to the source of products sold under that trademark. This is particularly problematic for an academic publisher like PLOS which seeks to maintain a reputation of excellence. We created this Trademark Policy to protect the public’s trust in the PLOS Marks and the viability of the PLOS platform for our community of contributing scholars.
We encourage the use of the PLOS Marks in marketing and other publicity materials related to PLOS or PLOS journals. This includes advertising stating that a person or organization has published an article in a PLOS journal. Of course, any use of a PLOS Mark is subject to the overarching requirement that the use be non-confusing. Thus, you can’t say that material was published in a PLOS journal when that isn’t true, you can’t brand your own publication as a PLOS journal, etc.
Although some uses of the PLOS Marks are governed by more specific rules, which appear below, the following basic guidelines apply to most uses of the PLOS Marks in printed materials, including marketing, articles, and websites:
Proper Form –The PLOS Marks should be used in their exact form, neither abbreviated nor combined with any other word or words (e.g., “PLOS” rather than “Pub LoS”);
Accompanying Symbol — The first or most prominent mention of a PLOS Mark should be accompanied by a symbol indicating whether the PLOS Mark is a registered trademark (“®”) or an unregistered trademark (“™”). See our Trademark List for the correct symbol to use;
Notice — The following notice should appear somewhere nearby (at least on the same page or on the credits page) the first use of a PLOS Mark: “[TRADEMARK] is a ["registered", if applicable] trademark of the Public Library of Science”;
Distinguishable — In at least the first reference, the trademark should be set apart from surrounding text, either by capitalizing it or by italicizing, bolding, or underlining it. In addition, your website may not copy the look and feel of any PLOS website; we do not want the visitor to your website to be confused about which company he/she is dealing with; and
Reproduction and Re-use of Articles
The Public Library of Science (PLOS) applies the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-BY) to works we publish (read the corresponding human-readable summary of CC-BY or the full license legal code). Under the CCAL, authors retain ownership of the copyright for their content , but allow anyone to download, reuse, reprint, modify, distribute, and/or copy the content so long as the original authors and source are cited. No permission is required from the authors or the publishers. You can find out more about how to attribute PLOS content here.
If you heavily modify an article that was originally published in a PLOS journal or use such an article as part of the research for a new work of authorship, then you may not redistribute that modified article or new work under any PLOS Mark. For example, if you’ve read an article that was originally published in a PLOS journal and use that article as the basis for a new piece on a related subject, then you may not use PLOS or any PLOS Mark, in whole or in part, in its name or title.
We invite you to link to PLOS’s website(s) for the purpose of allowing your visitors to download complete copies of works published in PLOS journals, by using the downloads that we provide, subject to the restrictions below.
This use is allowed as long as you:
- Follow this Trademark Policy.
- Point the destination URL to the official PLOS website of the source PLOS journal. You may not use a PLOS banner or button to point to your own website and/or to a modified version of an article published in a PLOS journal.
- Don’t alter any of the PLOS Marks including our logos.
- Don’t do anything that might confuse visitors to your website into mistaking the origin of the articles being downloaded.
You may customize the buttons in the following ways:
- Modify the background color of the button or banner.
- Change the size of the button or banner.
Remember the PLOS Marks must not be altered in any way. If your use of these banners or buttons violates our Trademark Policy, your use is unauthorized.
PLOS only provides access to high-resolution copies of its logos in special circumstances and only upon request. Provision of such high-resolution logos may be subject to different terms. For example, the Open Access Padlock is distributed on request to other organizations in our community (who share our vision of OA) under a CC0 license so that once it is provided the logo can appear without attribution.
To summarize, provided that the use adheres to this Trademark Policy, these are some of the things that you can do with the PLOS Marks that do not require our permission:
- Use the PLOS Marks in marketing and other publicity materials related to PLOS or the relevant PLOS journal;
- Link to PLOS’s website(s) by using the banners and buttons we provide to allow your visitors to download complete copies of articles published in PLOS journals; and
- Use PLOS’s word marks in describing and advertising your services or products relating to a PLOS product, as long as you don’t do anything that might mislead customers. For example, it’s OK if your website says, “Articles from PLOS available here.”
Reporting Trademark Abuse and Questions
Please send your inquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org