The Power of Collective Intelligence and Creating a Better Future


Hatched by Glasp

Jun 28, 2023

4 min read


The Power of Collective Intelligence and Creating a Better Future


In a world where access to knowledge is often restricted by legal barriers, Alexandra Elbakyan created a brilliant tool called Sci-Hub to remove these obstacles. Despite the controversy surrounding it, Sci-Hub has proven to be instrumental in the advancement of human knowledge. In fact, in 2016, Nature recognized Elbakyan as a key figure in science by including her as a "Paper Pirate" in their top ten list of influential people. However, her fight against the publishing giant Elsevier led to legal battles and forced her into hiding. Nevertheless, Elbakyan's work highlights the importance of collective intelligence and the need to fix outdated laws that hinder the free distribution of information.

The Power of Collective Intelligence:

Sci-Hub acts as a medium to connect the brains of researchers and scholars by providing access to research papers. It is a manifestation of the power of collective intelligence, where the sharing of knowledge leads to unprecedented advancements. Our brains, with billions of interconnected neurons, rely on constant communication to create consciousness. Similarly, when researchers from all over the world share their findings, it paves the way for new discoveries and breakthroughs. By breaking down the barriers to accessing academic papers, Sci-Hub facilitates this exchange of knowledge and accelerates human progress.

Addressing Outdated Laws:

Elbakyan's motivation to create Sci-Hub arose from her realization that certain laws, such as copyright laws, hinder the free distribution of information on the internet. These laws are outdated and fail to adapt to the digital age where information should be easily accessible to all. The internet has transformed the way we communicate, collaborate, and learn. It has opened up a world of possibilities, yet these restrictive laws impede the potential for collective intelligence. It is crucial that we fix these laws to ensure that knowledge can be freely and openly shared, benefiting society as a whole.

Creating a Better Future:

When it comes to building successful companies and shaping the future, asking the right questions is paramount. Sequoia, a renowned venture capital firm, emphasizes the importance of considering the future impact of a company or technology. What type of future is a team creating? What type of future do we want to live in? By constantly questioning and envisioning the future, we can make informed decisions and work towards a better world.

Taking Advantage of Key Enablers:

To create successful companies, it is essential to identify key enablers in the market or ecosystem. The biggest technology giants today have capitalized on technology advancements and shifts in consumer behavior. These enablers provided them with unique opportunities that could not have been realized earlier or later. The ability to recognize these enablers and leverage them effectively is crucial for success.

Marriage of New and Old:

In a world where consumers are both curious to discover new things and fearful of the unknown, the most successful innovators are adept at creating moments of meaning. They understand the power of marrying new and old, bridging the gap between anxiety and understanding. By building on familiar concepts while introducing innovative ideas, they create products and experiences that resonate with consumers.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Advocate for Open Access: Support initiatives and organizations that promote open access to research and information. Encourage universities, research institutions, and governments to adopt policies that prioritize the free distribution of knowledge.
  • 2. Challenge Outdated Laws: Engage in discussions and advocate for reforms in copyright laws and intellectual property regulations. Support legal initiatives that seek to strike a balance between protecting creators' rights and fostering the open exchange of information.
  • 3. Embrace Collective Intelligence: Foster collaboration and knowledge sharing within your field. Engage in interdisciplinary discussions, attend conferences, and participate in open-access platforms. By actively contributing to collective intelligence, you can help drive innovation and progress.


The story of Alexandra Elbakyan and Sci-Hub sheds light on the power of collective intelligence and the need to challenge outdated laws that hinder the free distribution of knowledge. By embracing open access and advocating for legal reforms, we can create a future where information is freely accessible to all. Additionally, by recognizing key enablers and marrying new and old, we can build successful companies that shape the world for the better. Let us embrace collective intelligence, challenge the status quo, and work towards a future where knowledge knows no boundaries.

Hatch New Ideas with Glasp AI 🐣

Glasp AI allows you to hatch new ideas based on your curated content. Let's curate and create with Glasp AI :)