Skip to main content

eCommons: Cornell's Digital Repository

Information and user support for eCommons, Cornell's Digital Repository.

Alteration Policy

Once deposited, content should not normally be modified. If removal is necessary, that process will follow the Withdrawal Policy (see below). If the description of the content (its metadata) is incorrect, the depositor must send an explanation of the error and its correction to the eCommons Administrator. Reasonable corrections to metadata will be made by eCommons staff.

Adding a new version or replacement of content is allowable according to the following policies.

Adding a new version

If the depositor wishes to update a work, providing a new version of an existing eCommons item, he/she must contact the eCommons Administrator with an explanation. Standard practice is for eCommons to maintain access to previous versions, with all versions visible on the landing page, with the reason for each subsequent version. For content added before 5 April 2018, the original handle always resolves to the newest version, and handles for older version(s) are generated by appending a number to the original handle. For content added after 5 April 2018, any additional version's handle is appended with a sequential number representing the version (eg. or In both cases, the newest version is listed first, and it remains possible to refer to a specific older version when a newer one exists.


Complete replacement of a file requires justification from the requestor. The requestor must note in their request the specific changes that have been made, in order to allow eCommons staff to assess the request.

Examples of reasonable requests for replacement include correcting errors, or marking a version of an item as deprecated or superseded. Superseded content may be indicated by adding a watermark or cover page to the replacement item (for example), stating that the content has been superseded. Such content modification is the responsibility of the requestor. When a replacement is made, a note will be added to the content description ("Content replaced at author's request on [date] for [reason]").

There are some cases in which a replacement cannot be made, such as requests to replace an official record such as a thesis or dissertation that has been formally approved.

Withdrawal Policy

eCommons is intended to provide persistent access to deposited material. Under certain circumstances, however, it may be necessary to remove material from eCommons. Cornell University Library reserves the right to withdraw content that is libelous, an invasion of privacy, or that does not reflect the nature of the Collection to which the work was submitted.

A request for removal should be directed to the eCommons Administrator and include the reasons for withdrawal. eCommons staff may contact the requestor for additional information.

Since the goal of eCommons is persistent long-term access to content, original item records are retained for all withdrawn content. These records, including all original metadata, will be displayed to users. These records will contain one of the following statements:

  • Item removed from eCommons on [date] at the request of the author.
  • Item removed from eCommons on [date] by legal order.
  • Item removed from eCommons on [date] due to a violation of eCommons policy.
  • Item removed from eCommons on [date] at Cornell University Library's discretion.

Web Accessibility Assistance