As a researcher and author you can participate in Open Access journals and books in several ways. This includes:
The list below describes Open Access Color Classifications that indicate the "openness" of the journal and/or article.
Adapted from the Simon Fraser University Scholarly Publishing website, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
Watch out for predators!
With Open Access comes some disadvantages. One that has become a significant issue is predatory journals and/or publishers. As you explore opportunities for publishing and presenting at conferences you may come across individuals who prey on authors with a variety of money-making ventures. They may take the form of publishers, journals, or conference organizers. It's essential that you have confidence in the quality and integrity of the resources that publish or host your research.
Where to start...if you are unfamiliar with the quality indicator noted below you may want to start with a checklist or checkpoint you can utilize to determine the integrity of journals and conferences. Keep in mind that no list is comprehensive and you may find that you need to use more than one or add questions of your own.
Science, in particular, seems to afflicted with this issue more so than other disciplines. For more information read the articles below.
Mercier, E., Tardif, P. A., Moore, L., Le Sage, N., & Cameron, P. A. (2018). Invitations received from potential predatory publishers and fraudulent conferences: a 12-month early-career researcher experience. Postgraduate Medical Journal, 94(1108), 104–10
While there are several lists that attempt to identify predatory journals and publishers you will most likely want to check more than one as they are updated at various intervals.
There are other Open licenses in addition to the Creative Commons. Not all are approved by the Open Source Initiative. Three of the most common are:
GNU - General Public License: For licensing free software
Apache License: Licensing for collaborative, open-source software development.
The MIT License - Part of the open source initiative
Open Audio License - Focuses on "freedom and openness to use music"