Virginia
06 November 2017
Reporter: Barney Dixon

Sci-Hub blocked in the US


Sci-Hub has been blocked in the US and must pay $4.8 million to the American Chemical Society (ACS) after a US district court entered a default judgment and injunction against it.

ACS filed a lawsuit at the US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in June against Sci-Hub owner Alexandra Elbakyan, demanding $4.8 million and alleging that Elbakyan had infringed its copyright by making its catalogue of more than 150,000 research papers available on the Sci-Hub website.

ACS also claimed that Sci-Hub had cloned aspects of its website and committed trademark infringement and counterfeiting.

Elbakyan didn’t respond to the litigation, leading to ACS seeking a default judgement in the case.

Sci-Hub is similar to The Pirate Bay, but instead offers illegal access to research papers and scientific journals.

According to PeerJ Preprints, an open-access peer review website, Sci-Hub contains nearly 69 percent of all 81.6 million scholarly articles in circulation. This number rises to 85 percent for those published in closed-access journals.

Alongside the damages demand, ACS had proposed an injunction that would prevent search engines, web hosts, internet service providers and domain registrars from facilitating access to Sci-Hub. It also demanded that all domain registries for Sci-Hub place its domains on hold.

ACS said that Sci-Hub’s “unabashed flouting of US copyright laws merits a strong deterrent”.

The court granted the injunction in its entirety, as well as the $4.8 million award.

Sci-Hub has been hit with a string of adversity, including a copyright lawsuit from Elsevier in June, which resulted in a $15 million damages award for the publishing company.

Sci-Hub has also shut down operations in Russia, blocking access to users from the region, after local scientists named a parasitic insect after Elbakyan.

Elbakyan said in a statement that scientific publications and publishers are the “real parasites” and “Sci-Hub, on the contrary, fights for equal access to scientific information and makes a useful case”.

Access in Russia has since been restored.

More Copyright news
The latest news from IPPro The Internet
Join Our Newsletter

Sign up today and never
miss the latest news or an issue again

Subscribe now
IPTV supplier fined £18,000
14 February 2018 | Harrow | Reporter: Barney Dixon
A pre-loaded IPTV box supplier must pay a £18,000 fine for selling illicit streaming devices online, as well as breaching the Premier League’s copyright
IFPI calls for “effective solution” to value gap
07 February 2018 | Brussels | Reporter: Barney Dixon
The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), with the support of 23 other creative industry organisations, has penned a letter to the new presidency of the European Council asking it provide an “effective solution” to the so-
New trial ordered in BMG v Cox
06 February 2018 | Virginia | Reporter: Barney Dixon
The US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit has overturned a $25 million damages award for BMG Rights Management and ordered a new trial in its dispute with Cox Communications
CRB issues royalty rate hike for music streaming services
05 February 2018 | Washington DC | Reporter: Barney Dixon
The Copyright Royalty Board has ruled to increase royalty payments to songwriters and music publishers from music streaming services by nearly 44 percent
Grumpy Cat wins copyright lawsuit
25 January 2018 | California | Reporter: Barney Dixon
The owner of internet sensation ‘Grumpy Cat’ has won a copyright infringement lawsuit against Grenade Beverage
Radiohead sue Lana Del Rey for copyright infringement
8 January 2018 | New York | Reporter: Barney Dixon
Radiohead are suing Lana Del Rey for copyright infringement, claiming that the Del Rey’s 2017 song Get Free was similar to their 1992 song Creep
Glosfer and Gemmy to create blockchain copyright protection platform
4 January 2018 | Seoul | Reporter: Barney Dixon
Blockchain firm Glosfer has signed a memorandum of understanding with copyright protection company Gemmy to create a blockchain-based copyright protection platform