AO3 News

Post Header

Published:
2021-09-05 21:29:05 UTC
Tags:

Celebrate our 14th Anniversary: OTW

Break out the party hats, the Organization for Transformative Works is 14 today! We are delighted to celebrate another anniversary with you all.

The OTW's mission since we launched has been to protect fan history and culture in all its forms. All of our projects work towards this goal. Over the past 14 years, OTW volunteers have rescued hundreds of fanworks from threatened platforms and archives; acted as a voice for fans regarding copyright legislation around the world; published 35 journal issues' worth of peer-reviewed fan studies scholarship; built and supported a fan culture wiki that our users have edited over 1 million times; and developed an archive that now contains over 8 million fanworks.

As always, we would be unable to do any of this without the support of our members, users, and the massive number of volunteers who keep the OTW running and we would therefore like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We intend to continue our important work for many years to come. If you'd like to follow us as we do, you can keep track of changes to the AO3 via our news posts and can find updates on our other projects on our project websites and social media channels. And if you would like to get even more closely involved you can keep track of our volunteer openings on our webpage, too!

We hope that our projects will continue to be a beacon of enjoyment even in the present interesting times. If you have found yourself soothed or entertained by fanworks lately, why not pay the good feelings forward and leave a kudos or comment for a fanworks creator today? However you choose to celebrate, we would love for you to join us in marking this milestone amongst your social circles and fandom communities.


The Organization for Transformative Works is the non-profit parent organization of multiple projects including Archive of Our Own, Fanlore, Open Doors, Transformative Works and Cultures, and OTW Legal Advocacy. We are a fan run, entirely donor-supported organization staffed by volunteers. Find out more about us on our website.

Comment

Post Header

Published:
2021-09-01 17:26:24 UTC
Tags:

OTW recruitment banner by Blair

Would you like to help wrangle AO3 tags? Are you fluent in a Chinese dialect? The Organization for Transformative Works is recruiting!

We're excited to announce the opening of applications for:

  • Tag Wrangling Volunteer - closing 08 September 2021 at 23:59 UTC [or after 100 applications]
  • Tag Wrangling Volunteer: Chinese - closing 08 September 2021 at 23:59 UTC [or after 40 applications]

We have included more information on each role below. Open roles and applications will always be available at the volunteering page. If you don't see a role that fits with your skills and interests now, keep an eye on the listings. We plan to put up new applications every few weeks, and we will also publicize new roles as they become available.

All applications generate a confirmation page and an auto-reply to your e-mail address. We encourage you to read the confirmation page and to whitelist our email address in your e-mail client. If you do not receive the auto-reply within 24 hours, please check your spam filters and then contact us.

If you have questions regarding volunteering for the OTW, check out our Volunteering FAQ.

Tag Wrangling Volunteer

The Tag Wranglers are responsible for helping to connect and sort the tags on AO3! Wranglers follow internal guidelines to choose the tags that appear in the filters and auto-complete, which link related works together. (This makes it easier to browse and search on the archive, whether that’s Shěn Wēi/Zhào Yúnlán with ABO Dynamics, Pepper Potts/Tony Stark with angst, g-rated Rose Lalonde/Kanaya Maryam fluff, or Jeon Jungkook & Kim Taehyung | V Are Childhood Friends.)

If you’re an experienced AO3 user who likes organizing, working in teams, or excuses to fact-check your favorite fandoms, you might enjoy tag wrangling! To join us, click through to the job description and fill in our application form. There will also be a short questionnaire that will help us assess whether you have the skills and attributes that will lead to your success in this role.

Please note: You must be 18+ in order to apply for this role. For this role, we’re currently looking for wranglers for specific fandoms only, which will change each recruitment round. Please see the application for which fandoms are in need.

Wranglers need to be fluent in English, but we welcome applicants who are also fluent in other languages, especially af Soomaali (Somali), Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian), Español (Spanish), Italiano (Italian), Polski (Polish), Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese), Українська (Ukrainian), తెలుగు (Telugu), ไทย (Thai) and Русский (Russian) — but help with other languages would be much appreciated!

Applications are due 08 September 2021 [or after 100 applications]

Tag Wrangling Volunteer: Chinese

The Tag Wranglers are responsible for helping to connect and sort the tags on AO3! Wranglers follow internal guidelines to choose the tags that appear in the filters and auto-complete, which link related works together. (This makes it easier to browse and search on the archive, whether that’s Shěn Wēi/Zhào Yúnlán with ABO Dynamics, Pepper Potts/Tony Stark with angst, g-rated Rose Lalonde/Kanaya Maryam fluff, or Jeon Jungkook & Kim Taehyung | V Are Childhood Friends.)

If you're a fluent Chinese speaker who likes organizing, working in teams, or excuses to fact-check your favorite fandoms, you might enjoy tag wrangling! To join us, click through to the job description and fill in our application form. There will also be a short questionnaire that will help us assess whether you have the skills and attributes that will lead to your success in this role.

Please note: You must be 18+ in order to apply for this role. We’re currently looking for applicants who are fluent in both English and Chinese (Traditional and Simplified both welcome). The work will involve both regular Tag Wrangling work and translating tags from Chinese into English.

Applications are due 08 September 2021 [or after 40 applications]

Apply at the volunteering page!

Comment

Post Header

Published:
2021-08-29 16:20:29 UTC
Tags:

Five Things an OTW Volunteer Said

Every month or so the OTW will be doing a Q&A with one of its volunteers about their experiences in the organization. The posts express each volunteer's personal views and do not necessarily reflect the views of the OTW or constitute OTW policy. Today's post is with lydia-theda, who volunteers as a Policy & Abuse staffer.

How does what you do as a volunteer fit into what the OTW does?

The Archive of Our Own was created to protect and preserve transformative fanworks of all kinds. As a fanwork archive, we believe in maximum inclusiveness of content: if you’ve created a fanwork—whether fiction or meta; derivative or original work; fanfic, fanart, fanmix, podfic, or fanvid—then regardless of the subject matter, your fanwork is welcome on AO3.

You’ll need to choose an appropriate rating, warning, fandom, and language, but (with the exception of language) you don’t have to be specific. When it comes to the Archive’s required tags, using the “Not Rated” rating, “Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings” warning, and “Unspecified Fandom” or “Undisclosed Fandom” fandom tags is like saying Here be dragons, and that’s perfectly fine and valid. Of course, you’re also welcome to pick the more specific ratings and warnings, and/or get really detailed in your fandom, character, relationship, and additional tags.

Currently, AO3 hosts approximately 8 million works, created by 4 million users and tagged with over 16 million tags. As a tag wrangler, I help sort and connect all those tags so that users can more easily find—or avoid—particular content. And as part of the Policy & Abuse committee (PAC), I investigate reports about content and behaviors that violate the AO3 Terms of Service. (If you didn’t know, the Report Abuse link is located at the bottom of every AO3 page.)

We only need one report in order to investigate any given case, and the more details about the user and their works or comments you include in that report, the better. A minimum of two real human beings review every single report we receive, to ensure that we are interpreting the Terms of Service consistently and that we only act when the reported user isn’t following the rules.

If the content doesn’t violate the Terms of Service, then the report is rejected and the fanwork remains on the Archive.

But if you post things that aren’t fanworks (like fic searches, prompts, or social media posts), mention anything about making money from your work, reproduce someone else’s work without permission, harass other users, or otherwise violate the Terms of Service, then we may send you an email warning you that what you did isn’t allowed on AO3, and explaining exactly what you need to do to fix the issue and what will happen if you don’t.

All reports are confidential, and all user communication occurs via email, whether that’s the email address associated with your AO3 account or the one you entered into the form when making a report. Please make sure your email is correct and that you check it (and your spam folder) regularly!

What is a typical week like for you as a volunteer?

Every day, I receive hundreds of email/mobile notifications about the latest reports, updates to active cases, and other messages. As a volunteer, I do what I can, when I have the time and spoons to do it. So, if I only have a few minutes here and there, or if I’m on my phone, I’ll do little things: reviewing drafts for typos, reading and contributing to ongoing discussions, browsing through and claiming tickets, or making notes on incoming reports to help whoever eventually takes the case.

When I have a larger block of time, I’ll work on some of the tickets I picked up earlier. For any given case, the first thing I do is collect, organize, and verify all of the relevant information in order to determine whether there’s been a violation and how to handle it. If the case is borderline or particularly complicated, I may need to bring it to the team for discussion or consult with other committees, such as AD&T, Support, Translation, or Legal. Once I’ve decided what the appropriate action should be, I’ll draft all necessary responses and ask another team member to review my work and (if they didn’t find any errors) sign off on the case. If any of my responses need to be translated, I’ll get that done before sending the emails out. If I gave a user a deadline to do something, I’ll follow up after the deadline has passed to see if they did the thing. If they did, great; if not … well, that depends on the case.

On top of all that, I try to do a bit of wrangling every week, whether that’s checking the fandoms I’m assigned to for new tags, evaluating if my fandoms’ existing tags meet current guidelines, or working on large-scale projects with other wranglers. Once a month or so, I help AD&T test the latest releases, which mostly amounts to poking things they’ve coded to make sure they work right (and occasionally finding out that they don’t).

What made you decide to volunteer?

One day I stumbled upon one of the AO3 news posts which was asking for tag wranglers. I had no idea what that was, but it seemed like an interesting way to contribute to fandom, so I applied.

I joined PAC about a year later, after talking with a few friends who were on the team and thinking that the type of work PAC does and the kind of people they are sounded exactly like it’d fit with my interests and personality. While I don’t think I would have had the courage to apply to PAC from the start, I’m very glad I’m here now.

What has been your biggest challenge doing work for the OTW?

Particularly in the last year or so, there’s been a huge increase in site traffic. More users means more content, and more content means more tags to wrangle and more reports to process. On both of my committees, we’ve had to take steps to try and keep up with the higher workload.

I’m just one of over a thousand volunteers from around the world, all of whom are devoting our free time to the OTW’s various projects. Everything we do—research, testing, discussion, coordination, documentation, recruitment, training, policy decisions, procedural changes, guideline reviews, normal day-to-day work—takes time and effort, and not everyone has those to spare on any given day. Misunderstandings are going to happen, so patience and kindness are crucial. Apologize when you mess up, try to figure out where you went wrong, and commit to doing better in the future.

What fannish things do you like to do?

While I will occasionally create fanart or beta fics for friends, I wouldn’t have discovered AO3 if I didn’t read fic, and I read fic nearly every day. Nowadays I get most of my recs from wrangling and reports, lol. I also spend a lot of time chatting with other OTW volunteers, whether about our work, the fandoms we’re in together, interesting things we found online … plus, I’ll never say no to a cute cat pic ^_^


Now that our volunteer’s said five things about what they do, it’s your turn to ask one more thing! Feel free to ask about their work in comments. Or if you'd like, you can check out earlier Five Things posts.

The Organization for Transformative Works is the non-profit parent organization of multiple projects including Archive of Our Own, Fanlore, Open Doors, Transformative Works and Cultures, and OTW Legal Advocacy. We are a fan run, entirely donor-supported organization staffed by volunteers. Find out more about us on our website.

Comment

Post Header

Now that the 2021 election is over, we're happy to share with you our voter turnout statistics!

For the 2021 Election, we had 11231 total eligible voters. Of those, 2305 voters cast a ballot, which represents 20.5% of the potential voters.

Our voter turnout is lower than that of last year, which had a turnout of 21.4%.

We also saw a decrease in the number of ballots cast, from 2858 to 2305, which represents a 19.3% decrease.

Elections is committed to continuing to reach out to our eligible members to encourage them to vote in elections. Whoever is elected to the Board of Directors can have an important influence on the long-term health of the OTW's projects, and we want our members to have a say in that.

For those who might be interested in the number of votes each candidate received, please note that our election process is designed to elect an equal cohort of Board members in order to allow them to work well together, so we do not release that information. As a general rule, we also won't disclose which of our unsuccessful candidates received the fewest votes, since we don't want to discourage them from running again in the future when circumstances and member interest might be different. However, as there were only 4 candidates this year, with two elected and one appointed, revealing that information is unavoidable.

Once again, a big thank you to everyone who participated at every stage of the election! We hope to see you at the virtual polls again next year.


The Organization for Transformative Works is the non-profit parent organization of multiple projects including Archive of Our Own, Fanlore, Open Doors, Transformative Works and Cultures, and OTW Legal Advocacy. We are a fan run, entirely donor-supported organization staffed by volunteers. Find out more about us on our website.

Comment

Post Header

In the coming days, we'll be rolling out a code change that limits the total number of fandom, character, relationship, and additional tags that can be added to a work. This limit of 75 tags will apply to both new and existing works, but no tags will be automatically removed from existing works.

Why place a limit on tags?

Having a limit on tags will:

  • help keep work blurbs to a reasonable length, improving the experience of navigating work listings, and
  • encourage creators to tag for the most important elements of their works, improving the quality of search results.

Why 75 tags?

We looked at all the works on the Archive and determined that:

  • the average number of tags per work is 17,
  • the most common number of tags per work is 11, and
  • less than 0.5% of works have more than 75 tags.

A limit of 75 total fandom, character, relationship, and additional tags per work will provide the vast majority of creators with enough space to describe the content of their works while also keeping work blurbs to a manageable size.

Why don't ratings, categories, and warnings count toward the limit?

Ratings, categories, and warnings already have limits of their own. A work can only have one rating, and the number of categories and warnings a work can have is limited by the number of options provided on the posting form.

What should I do if I notice someone's work has more than 75 total fandom, character, relationship, and additional tags?

Nothing! Works that exceed the tag limit do not violate the Terms of Service and should not be reported to the Policy & Abuse team or the Support team.

What happens to previously posted works with more than 75 total fandom, character, relationship, and additional tags?

Nothing! The work will keep all of its tags.

However, if the work creator wants to edit the work or add a chapter, they will have to remove some of their fandom, character, relationship, and/or additional tags before they can save their changes. (An error message will tell the creator exactly how many tags must be removed.)

Comment

Post Header

Organization for Transformative Works Elections News: Cast Your Vote!

The Elections Committee would like to thank all of our candidates for their hard work in this year’s election. With that, we are pleased to present the results of the 2021 Election.

The following candidates (in alphabetical order) have been officially elected to the Board of Directors:

E. Anna Szegedi
Kari Dayton

Additionally, the Board of Directors is sorry to announce that director Kati Eggert, who was elected last year, is stepping down from her position on the Board for personal reasons, effective immediately. We are grateful for Kati’s service and thank her for her work and dedication.

To fill the vacant seat, the Board is appointing the candidate who placed third in this election, Antonius Melisse, to join the Board of Directors and serve the remainder of Kati’s term (two years) starting on October 1. This will guarantee that we continue to have a full Board until the next election.

The new members of the Board will formally begin their term overlap on October 1. We wish them well with their terms.

With that, the election season comes to a close. Thank you to everyone who got involved by spreading the word, asking the candidates questions, and, of course, voting! We look forward to seeing all of you again next year.


The Organization for Transformative Works is the non-profit parent organization of multiple projects including Archive of Our Own, Fanlore, Open Doors, Transformative Works and Cultures, and OTW Legal Advocacy. We are a fan run, entirely donor-supported organization staffed by volunteers. Find out more about us on our website.

Comment

Post Header

Organization for Transformative Works Elections News: Cast Your Vote!

The election has opened!

Every OTW member who joined between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 should have a ballot by now. If you didn't get one, please check your spam folder first, then contact us via our contact form. Please note that your donation receipt will be dated in US Eastern Time, so if your donation is listed after 19:59 on June 30, 2021 on the receipt, you won't be eligible to vote. If you are unsure whether your donation was made before the deadline, please contact our Development and Membership Committee by using the contact form on our website and selecting "Is my membership current/Am I eligible to vote?".

The election will run through August 16, 2021, 23:59 UTC; check this time zone converter to find out what time that will be for you.

Once you've voted, you can head over to Twitter and use the hashtag #OTWE2021 to meet and chat with other voters! We'd love to hear from you!


The Organization for Transformative Works is the non-profit parent organization of multiple projects including Archive of Our Own, Fanlore, Open Doors, Transformative Works and Cultures, and OTW Legal Advocacy. We are a fan run, entirely donor-supported organization staffed by volunteers. Find out more about us on our website.

Comment

Post Header

Banner of a paper airplane emerging from an envelope with the words 'OTW Newsletter: Organization for Transformative Works

I. ELECTIONS UPDATE

Elections had a very busy July, posting three sets of Q&As and hosting four chats on Discord with the candidates for the upcoming Board of Directors election. If you were unable to attend any of the chats, you can find the chat transcripts on the Elections website, along with the Q&As and the Bios & Platforms.

Voting instructions have been emailed to all eligible members, thanks to the work of Elections, Communications, Development & Membership. Translated versions of these voting instructions are also available on the Elections website. If you have not received your voting instructions by email, or if you have a different query, you can contact the Elections Committee through their website.

The election will be held August 13-16, and your ballot will come via the email you gave when you donated.

II. AT THE AO3

Open Doors has announced the upcoming import of The Kirk/Spock Fanfiction Archive, with help from Communications and Translation, and has completed the import of Rawhide-fic!

In June, Tag Wrangling handled more than 390,000 tags across more than 44,000 fandoms. At the time of this writing, Policy & Abuse had received about 1500 tickets in July so far, and Support was on track to receive about 1200 tickets in the month of July.

Accessibility, Design & Technology has been testing the next release, and fielding database requests from Support and Policy & Abuse. We’d like to give a special shoutout to all of our GitHub contributors, new and old! We’re extremely grateful for their contributions and their patience as we try to finish up this release and start merging some of their changes.

III. ELSEWHERE AT THE OTW

The Board of Directors hosted a public meeting on July 11. The main discussion involved the creation of two new officer roles: to aid us in introducing paid staff, and to research options for diversity consultants. Thank you to everyone who came to the meeting and gave their input! As always, if you have any feedback or questions about their work, you can email the Board.

Fanlore has been hard at work creating posts for their Fandom in Color spotlight, and they've had a great response so far -- check out their Fandom in Color tag on Tumblr and #FandominColor on Twitter to see the posts! They also announced an upcoming addition to their Identity Protection Policy that will allow for fans to remove associations between two fannish identities that they wish to keep separate, even if there is no link to a real-life identity. You can check out the full text of the policy update on Dreamwidth!

TWC has also been busy. The September 2021 issue of Transformative Works and Cultures is currently in production, and editorial acceptances are accelerating for the March 2022 issue. TWC also has a new Twitter account! Soon after it launched they tweeted about the site going through some updates on July 26, so follow them to stay informed about TWC activities. Just a reminder that you can find links to all the OTW's social media accounts at our Where to Find Us page on the OTW website.

IV. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE PEEPS

From 25 June to 24 July, Volunteers & Recruiting received 69 new requests, and completed 69, leaving us with 28 open requests (including induction and removal tasks listed below).

As of 25 July 2021, the OTW has 1007 volunteers. \o/ Recent personnel movements are listed below.

New Translation Volunteers: DFM, Llio, Luthfia, QT, ru, snjeguljica33, Tear, Tiass, yaghma, Åse Gjefsen and 4 volunteers
New TWC Volunteers: Emily Cohen and 1 volunteer

Departing Committee Staff: inimitablereel (Systems), J. Quadrifrons (AO3 Documentation), MorningStarlight (AO3 Documentation) and 1 Policy & Abuse Staffer
Departing Tag Wrangler Volunteers: Colercw, haru and 2 other volunteers
Departing Translation Volunteers: Filip Drnovsek Zorko & 4 volunteers

For more information about the purview of our committees, please access the committee listing on our website.


The Organization for Transformative Works is the non-profit parent organization of multiple projects including Archive of Our Own, Fanlore, Open Doors, Transformative Works and Cultures, and OTW Legal Advocacy. We are a fan run, entirely donor-supported organization staffed by volunteers. Find out more about us on our website.

Comment


Pages Navigation