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  • Shadow archivists are concerned about the active hunt for online libraries


    The online library Genesis (LibGen), the largest piracy repository of academic papers, has faced great difficulties due to the closure of part of the infrastructure. In 2019, LibGen had an average of 5 different HTTP mirror sites. Now, as Reddit users noted this week, there are 2 such sites.

    Following the recent arrest of the operators of the pirated online library Z-Library, intelligence agencies disabled and seized 249 library domains, rendering the site inaccessible on the Internet. However, the site remained active through ".onion" domains on the Tor network. But then users faced the problem of access to the shadow version of the library.

    The closure of yet another LibGen site has raised concerns among "shadow archivists," a term for voluntary digital libraries that maintain online repositories such as LibGen and Z-Library, which hold vast collections of pirated books, research papers, and other materials.

    Shadow libraries have moved to more robust darknet hosting systems such as IPFS, BitTorrent, and Tor. Sites on these networks are much more difficult for law enforcement to gain access to. LibGen is also one of those services that have moved their repositories to Tor. Users now hope that this transition will bring back the LibGen online library's former popularity.

    Author DeepWeb
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