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Aaron Swartz

Downloads JSTOR database

Sep 2010

Swartz allegedly uses several methods to grab articles from the JSTOR database, including breaking into a computer-wiring closet on the M.I.T. campus and setting up a laptop with a false identity on the school network for free JSTOR access under the name Gary Host — or when shortened for the e-mail address, “ghost.” When retrieving the computer, he hides his face behind a bicycle helmet, peeking out through the ventilation holes. The flood of downloads is so great that it crashed some JSTOR servers and JSTOR blocked access to the network from M.I.T. and its users for several days.