Distributed digital preservation: preserving open journal systems content in the PKP PN | Digital Library Perspectives | Ahead of Print

“This paper aims to discuss the public knowledge project (PKP) preservation network (PN), which provides free preservation services for eligible journals by collecting article content and preserving it in a network of (at the time of writing) eight “preservation nodes” using the LOCKSS system. The PKP PN was launched in June 2016….”

Scaling up paywalled academic article sharing by legal means

“It was a Sunday afternoon at the summer house in the Finnish countryside. Sitting by the lake to keep cool in blazing heat I was lazily browsing Twitter. That’s when I bumped into this widely shared tweet by Holly Witteman: “If you read a paper, 100% goes to the publisher. If you just email us to ask for our papers, we are allowed to send them to you for free, and will be genuinely delighted to do so.” Those who are not familiar with how the publishing industry works might wonder why could such an archaic means for sharing knowledge be in anyone’s interest. Research papers have been in digital format for a while and the internet, which was originally invented by Tim Berners Lee precisely for sharing articles between researchers, has been there for 20 years. Surely there are more effective ways for sharing than email….

At Iris.ai we’re working to change that by launching R4R. By facilitating requesting and sharing of papers via email, the initiative aims to make the process of sharing as speedy and frictionless as possible, targeting particularly those resources that are not yet accessible via open repositories. Technically R4R is a simple tool designed for unlocking access to scholarly articles when the existing open access services fall short….”

 

ScienceFair

“ScienceFair uses blazing-fast search and a clean user interface to help you find and filter the literature you need. No hidden menus or complex settings….Instead of static PDFs, ScienceFair uses the eLife Lens reader for a rich reading experience that helps you navigate and interpret scientific papers better….Search your own library and any number of distributed literature collections simultaneously – the results are seamlessly merged as they stream in from the peer-to-peer network….Results are automatically data-mined in real-time, giving you a live updating dashboard you can use to analyse the literature and refine your discovery process.”

Blockchain offers a route to a true scholarly commons

“Elsevier’s acquisition of these open services highlights the prospect that companies will come to control the global scientific infrastructure. Even though the openness of the digital services and resources used by research is more and more taken for granted, the traditional web is not a public domain….

But there is another way, in the form of the decentralised web. Here, there are no central repositories; instead infrastructure is decentralised and information is distributed between countless different computers, accessible to all, in what are called peer-to-peer networks.

One example of this technology is BitTorrent. This allows the rapid transmission of large files by dividing them into chunks and allowing clients to load objects piece by piece, while at the same time making the already loaded pieces available to all other clients. Various initiatives, such as decentralised archive transport (DAT) and the interplanetary file system (IPFS), have adapted bit torrent for information sharing, replacing a centralised infrastructure of servers and clients with a decentralised network. In the decentralised web, trust is created not through trade names or URLs, but through cryptography….

Hosting content is no longer a special role that requires trustworthy institutions, service contracts and plausible business models. Rather, the objects are in the public domain, and their dissemination requires only the open protocols of the decentralised web. This paves the way for new business models, by opening up another area of the internet to the “permissionless innovation” that drove its development.

The benefits of such approaches for making digital objects available for research, teaching and digital cultural heritage are obvious. As well as technical improvements in the transmission and storage of information, the current situation of privileged players controlling access to content would be replaced with a true scholarly commons, distributed between many computer systems….

The impetus for the second step—complete disintermediation, doing away with centralised publishers in the same way that bitcoin renders banks unnecessary— is more likely to come from start-ups than incumbents. There are already decentralised peer-to-peer scholarly publishing platforms, for example Aletheia and Pluto. Decentralised social networking platforms, such as the Akasha Project, are also in development….”

Need a paper? Get a plug-in

“Increasingly, however, scientists are turning to tools such as Unpaywall, Open Access Button, Lazy Scholar and Kopernio. These tools all do more or less the same thing: tap into an overlapping set of data sources to identify and retrieve open-access copies of research papers that are inaccessible or hard to find through other routes.”

Fast and Furious (at Publishers): The Motivations behind Crowdsourced Research Sharing

Abstract: “Crowdsourced research sharing takes place across social media platforms including Twitter  hashtags such as #icanhazpdf, Reddit Scholar, and Facebook. This study surveys users of these peer?to? peer exchanges on demographic information, frequency of use, and their motivations in both providing  and obtaining scholarly information on these platforms. Respondents also provided their perspectives  on the database terms of service and/or copyright violations in these exchanges. Findings indicate that the motivations of this community are utilitarian or ideological in nature, similar to other peer?to?peer  file sharing online. Implications for library services including instruction, outreach, and interlibrary loan  are discussed.”

Study explores peer-to-peer research sharing communities

“Peer-to-peer research sharing looks a lot like sharing of other forms of media, a new study suggests. While some researchers are personally opposed to copyright, others pirate research simply for the sake of convenience. Piracy been around for decades, but the sources of pirated music, movies and more have multiplied over the years, expanding beyond platforms such as Napster and the Pirate Bay. Today, many users search for copyrighted scholarly papers on Facebook, Reddit and Twitter or repositories such as Library Genesis (LibGen) and Sci-Hub. Carolyn Caffrey Gardner and Gabriel J. Gardner, librarians at the University of Southern California and California State University at Long Beach, respectively, recently explored the motivations of the people who use those sites. Their paper, ‘Fast and Furious (at Publishers): The Motivations Behind Crowdsourced Research Sharing,’ will appear in an upcoming edition of College & Research Libraries, a publication of the Association of College and Research Libraries …”