I hate to rain on everybody's parade, but that study that showed that papers downloaded from Sci-Hub were more cited than papers that weren't?

They compared papers that had been downloaded from SH with papers that hadn't been downloaded from SH at all, without getting any other download counts, which means there's no control for the fact that papers that are downloaded more are probably just better papers, and hence would likely be cited more anyway whether Sci-Hub existed or not.


It'd be *really* interesting to try comparing whether there's something special about papers that are downloaded from SH but *not* (or not as much) from official journal websites, which could actually indicate a differential effect thanks to SH... Not sure you could harvest the data for the download counts from publishers easily, though.

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@pence At least some publishers just straight up list the download counts.

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