Zlibrary is no more. At least, the law enforcement agencies did their bit to make this claim. That includes taking down more than 200 domain names related to the site. The Russian duo who operated the site have been booked too. No doubt that’s a major victory achieved against those who distribute copyrighted material but the final battle is far from being won. That’s primarily because there is no dearth of those who have been openly championing Zlibrary and their modus operandi, that of making available essential books to the masses for free.
However, as TorrentFreak reported, there is chaos reining all around post the demise of Zlibrary. The one thing that is perhaps undebatable is that Zlibrary has been huge, and its demise has left a gap equally expansive. Add to that the demand for free e-books – users seem to be least concerned about whether they are pirated, copyrighted, or otherwise – remains unabated. No wonder this has led to others clamoring to fill the void, and not surprisingly, such sites are seeing their visitor count increasing by the millions already.
Take for instance sites such as Zlibrary.to or Zlib.is both of which are among the top when you search for Zlibrary. The idea is all too clear, to gain maximum traction from Zlibrary’s woes, even if that requires using the Zlibrary brand shamelessly. Zlibrary.to also offers e-books for free but beyond that, it has nothing in common with the original Zlibrary.
However, its rising popularity hasn’t gone unnoticed by the publishers who have already shot off several take down requests targeting the site. While that is understandable, what is outright bizarre is that the site too has sent a takedown notice to Google seeking the de-listing of another e-book portal. Specifically, Zlibrary.to is seeking the removal of several URLs listed at Ebookchase.com claiming those are stealing its works.
The DMCA notice stated: “This website keeps stealing our works with full copyright. Our company strongly urges the other party to conduct self-examination, take down all infringement books, and promises to never use any means to infringe on our company’s works.”
Meanwhile, another related development TorrentFreak revealed is the website Rationalinsurgent that too has shot off several DMCA takedown notices to Google. The site has published an article glorifying Zlibrary and mentioned several alternative sites people might try out in the absence of Zlibrary. However, the site is now claiming its article has been illegally copied by other sites and wants Google to punish them. Its efforts seem to have worked too, what with the two sites mentioned in the complaint removing the targeted article.
In yet another development equally unusual, someone by the name Mahut Aydin seems to have been pissed off by a particular Reddit post about the site Z-Lib.is. The particular post mentions Z-Lib.is to be a scam site as it does not offer any e-book to download, something many might have expected given its resemblance to Zlibrary. Rather, the site is offering a desktop client that it is urging visitors to install on their devices. Neither Google nor Reddit seems to be interested though as the post continues to be there and is yet to be taken down.
As for Zlibrary, it continues to be online and offers e-books to download for free as usual. However, that is via its darknet site on the Tor network. The IPFS version of Z-Library too continues to be functional. However, it will require some additional technical know-how to access either website. Apart from this, there are also reports of a particular site, 1lib.to that provides access to the original Zlibrary site as usual. However, the access seems to be limited to the original account holders, mods, or those who donated to the older site.
So, where do things stand at the moment? Zlibrary seems to have attained a cult status of sorts. It enjoys the support of a loyal fan base who are ready to lend it unwavering support. Demand for free e-books continues to be as strong as ever. Publishers, meanwhile continue their vigil against pirate sites offering copyrighted content. Government agencies too are doing their work. As such, it is going to be highly interesting to see how things pan out from here. Stay tuned.
With a keen interest in tech, I make it a point to keep myself updated on the latest developments in technology and gadgets. That includes smartphones or tablet devices but stretches to even AI and self-driven automobiles, the latter being my latest fad.