The science of piracy, the piracy of science. Who are the science pirates and where do they come from: Part 2

Balázs BodóPart 1 of this post explained the background to the development of shadow libraries and their growth in recent years. This post will analyse the nature of the works downloaded and discuss the implications of shadow libraries for the future of scholarly publishing. What is being downloaded? Over the 4.5 month period in 2014/15, 760,868 different documents were downloaded for more than 16 million times. As can be seen from Figure 4, neither the supply, nor the demand of books is uniformly distributed. Figure 4: The utilization of the shadow library by subject matter In the graph, the bars represent the number of unique titles in the catalogue by Dewey topic category. Almost half of the titles in the catalogue do not have a Dewey classification; these are mostly older works and/or were published in Russia/Soviet Union. Most of the rest of the catalogue belongs to the Technology domain (~157k works), Science (~108k), and Social Sciences (~107k). On average,…

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