library genesis in Sekulic 2018

t capacity to centralize and control within
the realm of knowledge distribution, one look at the oligopoly of academic
publishing and its impact on access and independent production shows its

In June 2015 Elsiver won an injunction against Library Genesis and its
subsidiary platform, making it inaccessible in some countries and
via some commercial internet providers. Run by anonymous scientists mostly
from Eastern Europe, these voluntary and non-commercial projects are the
largest illegal

ssible to anyone, not just to members of wealthy
academic institutions. The act of acknowledging responsibility for sci-hub
transformed what was seen as the act of illegality (piracy) into the act of
civil disobedience. In the context of sci-hub and Library Genesis, both
projects from the periphery of knowledge production, “copyright infringement
opens on to larger questions about the legitimacy of the historic compromise –
if indeed there ever even was one – between the labor that produces culture
and kn

nfrastructures of
Knowledge Production’. Memory of the World (blog), 30 October 2014.

(4) For more on shadow libraries and library genesis see: Bodo, Balazs.
‘Libraries in the Post-Scarcity Era’. SSRN Scholarly Paper. Rochester, NY:
Social Science Research Network, 10 June 2015.

(5) ‘Sci-Hub Tears Down Academia’s “Illegal” Copyrig

l 2018.[](

(8) Ibid.

(9) Mars, Marcell and Tomislav Medak, The System of a Takedown, forthcoming,

(10) See ‘In Solidarity with Library Genesis and Sci-Hub’. Accessed 7 April 2018.

library genesis in Custodians 2015

2015.  ↩
9. “[Guerilla Open Access Manifesto.](” Internet Archive. Accessed November 30, 2015.  ↩

es are priced such
that they prohibit access to science to many academics - and all non-academics
- across the world, and render it a token of privilege.3

Elsevier has recently filed a copyright infringement suit in New York against
Science Hub and Library Genesis claiming millions of dollars in damages.4 This
has come as a big blow, not just to the administrators of the websites but
also to thousands of researchers around the world for whom these sites are the
only viable source of academic materials. The soc

entral role in the allocation of academic prestige trump the public interest.
Commercial publishers effectively impede open access, criminalize us,
prosecute our heroes and heroines, and destroy our libraries, again and again.
Before Science Hub and Library Genesis there was or Gigapedia;
before Gigapedia there was; before there was little; and
before there was little there was nothing. That's what they want: to reduce
most of us back to nothing. And they have the full support of the courts and
law to do exactly that.7

In Elsevier's case against Sci-Hub and Library Genesis, the judge said:
"simply making copyrighted content available for free via a foreign website,
disserves the public interest"8. Alexandra Elbakyan's original plea put the
stakes much higher: "If Elsevier manages to shut down our projects or force


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