Much of the world’s major publishing houses require readers to pay for reading articles.
Perhaps after a number of accesses and, however, at a cost that rarely exceeds one euro. In order to be able to look at a single scientific text only, specialized editors require payments that are often close to 25 euros.
The revolt of the most famous “scientific pirate” in the world, a girl of Armenian, Asian and Russian origins, has opened a site where you can download free millions of scientific pages free of charge.
A site in the war with the big publishers, and has recently been hit by a ruling by an American court that imposed a $ 15 million fine on its owner.
But her 29 year-old Alexandra Elbakyan, founder of Sci-Hub, continues on her way, backed by millions of researchers around the world, from Iran (the country downloading multiple documents from her site) to China, to the same states United: “Science – he says – should belong to scientists and not to publishers.”
Problems with American justice for now do not touch her, because after graduating from Kazakhstan in Neurophysiology (then developing on her own great hacker skills), Alexandra lives in an unspecified Russian location.
And the government of Vladimir Putin seems to have no problems with his struggle against the great western masters of scientific culture.
The Dutch publisher
The number one enemy of the “pirate” is the Dutch scientist giant Elsevier, which records annual revenue over 20 billion euros.
Its profit margins are around 35% of sales, with 40% points being reached in 2012 and 2013. Percentages that even colossus like Apple, Google or Amazon are dreaming.
Unlike the normal publishers who have to pay the writers and then compensate the technical or scientific reviewers for the published works, specialized homes get almost everything for free. A Deutsche Bank study called the ‘triple payment’ system. In any country, the state finances research based on the work to be published.
It pays the salaries of those who are called upon to review the work scientifically and eventually pays again, perhaps through universities, to get their scientists access to those essays.
The most popular of all is just that of the Kazakhan researcher from whom thousands of documents are downloaded every day, beating also other popular portals like AceofBrains.com. The Sci-Hub archive contains at least 60 million searches.
One study verified that in six months users downloaded 28 million texts, even in this case mostly from Iran, India and China.
But even large American universities, such as Harvard, say they are struggling to pay the rising prices demanded by scientific publishers.
So Alexandra goes on, despite the war against his hub. Avoid traveling abroad and its supporters asks to be paid in Bitcoin, the virtual electronic coin.
To those who accuse him of being a tool of Russian secret services, he says: “I am completely independent.” However, he says things that certainly do not disappoint Putin: “I am for a strong state that can oppose the West and choose its own way of development.”