A Martyr and a Warrior: Guerilla open access movement and the continuing battle for radical access to scholarly literature

“Anubha will reflect on the arc of the guerilla open access movement, and its turning points such as Aaron Swartz’s prosecution, Libgen’s and Sci-hub’s missions, and more. She will also highlight the movement’s connections and relevance for Indian researchers….

 

 

Arul will be providing an overview of the legal issues involved in the litigation initiated in India by three major publishers against Sci-Hub and Libgen. He will discuss the specific facts of the case and examine whether there are any legitimate grounds for granting a “dynamic injunction” against Sci-Hub ad Libgen. As part of the remarks, he will discuss the factors that a court needs to take into consideration while deciding on an injunction application. During his remarks, he will also touch upon some of the important lessons for the global community from the prosecution of Aaron Swartz in the US and the tragic end of that prosecution.”

The Monopoly of Journal Subscriptions and the Commodification of Research – The Wire Science

“So the final question is whether the government of India should try to address the basic problem of proprietorship of knowledge, and its subsequent commercialisation, by negotiating for a better deal from journal proprietors for access at less exorbitant fees; or should it examine how to change the law to give proprietary ownership to the creators of the knowledge?

The earlier bulk subscriptions negotiated by Uruguay and Egypt, cost them about Rs 48 per capita, while India currently spends about Rs 12 per capita. For India to arrive at an agreement at the same rate as Uruguay and Egypt would mean an expenditure of roughly Rs 6,500 crore (or $890mn). As it is, in India, public funding for research is scarce and becoming scarcer by the day through market-friendly policies. Changing the law, on the other hand, would either mean modifying existing legal provisions or at least passing legislation with respect to publicly funded research and its products within India as well as free access to such research globally….

Meanwhile, we must be quite clear that Sci-Hub and Library Genesis are providing an enormously useful service to scholars all over the world. It will be a long time before any official agency in India will be able to provide a comparable service. The best we can hope for is that the court cases against them languish for as long as possible as they do for much less laudable causes.”

Science Policy, Competition and Profits

How much India is spending on journal subscriptions? how difficult is it for Indians to access publicly funded research? A nationwide subscription proposal comes with a lot of financial and moral baggage. 

Assault on open access to science in India

“It was only a matter of time before the leading publishers of academic and scientific research turned their attention to India after their blocking the easy flow of knowledge in several Western countries. Now the big boys of scientific publishing, Elsevier, Wiley and American Chemical Society, have launched a similar case in the Delhi High Court asking internet service providers to block Sci-Hub and Libgen (Library Genesis) websites in India….”

Sci-Hub & Libgen Face ISP Blocking in India After Publishers File High Court Complaint * TorrentFreak

“A legal campaign by academic and scientific publishers to prevent Internet users from accessing Sci-Hub and Libgen has expanded to India. In a complaint filed at the High Court in Delhi, Elsevier, Wiley, and American Chemical Society, are demanding that local ISPs should block the sites to prevent copyright infringement.”

Sci-Hub Founder Criticises Sudden Twitter Ban Over Over “Counterfeit” Content * TorrentFreak

“Twitter has suspended the account of Sci-Hub, a site that offers a free gateway to paywalled research. The site is accused of violating the counterfeit policy of the social media platform. However, founder Alexandra Elbakyan believes that this is an effort to silence the growing support amidst a high profile court case in India.”

Sci-Hub: Scientists, Academics, Teachers & Students Protest Blocking Lawsuit * TorrentFreak

“Elsevier, Wiley, and American Chemical Society filed a lawsuit in India late December to compel local ISPs to block access to Sci-Hub and Libgen on copyright infringement grounds. With the case set for a hearing tomorrow, scientists, academics, teachers and students are calling on the government to prevent a blockade for the good of society.”

Sci-Hub and Libgen Up against Academic Publishers: A Death Knell for Access to Research? – Part III | SpicyIP

“This post is in continuation of my previous posts dealing with the background on the copyright infringement suit against Sci-Hub and Libgen (here) and the applicability of the fair dealing exception to the impugned use of copyrighted works (here). In this post, I discuss the exception in the Copyright Act for use of works for the purposes of education and the interim injunction plea sought by the plaintiffs….”

Sci-Hub and Libgen Up against Academic Publishers: A Death Knell for Access to Research? – Part II | SpicyIP

“This post is in continuation to my previous post (here) discussing the copyright infringement suit filed by academic publishers against Sci-Hub and Libgen, particularly the dynamic injunction sought by the plaintiffs. Here, I discuss the applicability of the fair dealing exception to the use of copyrighted works on the defendant websites in the instant dispute….”

Sci-Hub and Libgen Up against Academic Publishers: A Death Knell for Access to Research? – Part I | SpicyIP

“Recently, three major academic publishers Elsevier, Wiley, and American Chemical Society filed a copyright infringement suit in the Delhi High Court against two groups of websites going by the names ‘Sci-Hub’ and ‘Libgen’ which provide free access to millions of research papers/books. The plaintiffs have sought a permanent injunction against these websites and a dynamic injunction order so that the mirror links of these websites can be blocked as and when the plaintiffs notify. Additionally, the plaintiffs have sought an interim injunction against the defendants.

In a hearing that took place on December 24, the court refused to grant a relief of removing the alleged infringing links from the defendant websites noting that there was no urgency as the alleged infringement had been going on since 2011. However, in light of the stand of Sci-Hub’s counsel, the court ordered that “no new articles or publications, in which the plaintiffs have copyright, will be uploaded or made available”. Libgen was unrepresented in this hearing.

In this three-part post, I seek to dissect this litigation and the interpretive issues before the court….”