Pirate Libraries Remain Popular Among Academics, Research Finds
Academic publishers have tried various options to shut down Sci-Hub, without the desired result. Thus far, it appears that the site’s reach is only growing. A new study among thousands of researchers finds that the majority use pirate libraries to bypass paywalls. Lack of access is cited as the prime reason but, worryingly, many researchers also find shadow libraries easier to use than legal alternatives.
By offering free access to millions of ‘paywalled’ research papers, Sci-Hub is often described as “The Pirate Bay of Science”.
The site is used by researchers from all over the world, to acquire papers they otherwise have a hard time accessing. For some, Sci-Hub is essential for their work.
Major academic publishers such as Elsevier, Wiley, and American Chemical Society, view this rogue research library as a direct threat to their business model. This has resulted in several lawsuits, including two that were won by publishers through default judgments in U.S. courts.
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