The internet is supposed to make information available. Everywhere, to everybody, and at the lowest possible cost.
Naturally, there are people and companies, who and which used to profit handsomely from data not being free. Publishers of scientific data are among the greediest in that group. How does their outdated business work?
Scientists create the data and write about it. For free, because they have to. They do it for the reputation and for scientific debate. That is how they and their ideas advance. Other scientists then check the data and writings as part of what is called peer review. Again, they do that for free, because see above. And then comes some publisher, takes all the free stuff and charges everybody to read it.
Universities and labs have to subscribe to the magazines, paying big bucks. Researchers have to pay for individual articles usually up to US$30. And – of course – advertisers pay to put stuff in front of those eyeballs. Plus, never mind that most of the researchers and scientists are paid with government money, which is yours. If you want to read scientific articles, you have to open your wallet yet again.
Or at least you had to. Because here are two websites, where you can get the scientific publishing for free.
The first is Sci-Hub: https://sci-hub.io/
The other is Library Genesis: http://libgen.io/
Flipping the bird to Elsevier in particular,