A recent United States court ruling awarded publisher Elsevier $15m in damages for copyright infringements by Sci-Hub, the Library of Genesis (LibGen) project and related sites. This interesting news came to us from The Bookseller in their article, “Elsevier awarded $15m from Sci-Hub in copyright case.”

The Association of American Publishers (AAP) and the International Publishers Association (IPA) both have welcomed this news since Sci-Hub has been a particular thorn in the side of academic publishers for a while. They provide free access to pay-walled content without authorization. Of 28 million papers downloaded from Sci-Hub in 2016, Elsevier holds the copyrights for the largest share, followed by Springer Nature and Wiley-Blackwell.

IPA president Michiel Kolman, who is also Elsevier’s SVP for Information Industry Relations, said: “Sci-Hub apologists should know that these sites inflict serious damage on the scholarly community. They should not be compared with legitimate open access publishing. Their operations have nothing to do with the true innovation that’s happening in publishing to advance access to high quality scholarly material.”

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Data Harmony, a unit of Access Innovations, the world leader in indexing and making content findable.