The University Libraries have put together an excellent resource to inform campus authors of ways they can retain some of the rights to the scholarly articles that they publish so they can maximize the impact of their scholarly work. I encourage present and future academic authors to take a look at http://www.lib.umn.edu/scholcom/.
Especially key is the copyright addendum that can help you to retain parts of your copyright. You often don't have to sign away all of your rights. Many publishers are receptive to sharing copyright, if you ask.
Using this copyright addendum makes doing things like placing your work in our Digital Conservancy much easier. The Conservancy provides a stable url to link others to your work and has been found to raise a work's search engine ranking, making the work more visible!
If you have questions about using the copyright addenda or you're interested in using the Digital Conservancy, send me an email.