October, 2009 Newsletter (Vol. 33)

Welcome to our October, 2009 newsletter. Get news from all your favorite committees about all your favorite OTW projects…right beneath the cut!


Abuse has been hard at work getting ready for Open Beta. Committee members are finishing up boilerplate responses and walking through sample cases. We’re also coordinating with the website Testing Procedure folks to make sure that Abuse aspects of the website are up and running optimally.


AD&T have moved the Archive to our lovely new servers and dropped a lot of new code in as well. Go look at the new improved Bookmarks and start thinking about what fields you’d like to see in cut-down views! Read our FAQ! Marvel at our News Posts!

We’re also planning for Open Beta, this is currently scheduled for mid November and is dependent on the code changes we need being ready in time 🙂

We want to run a competition to design the perfect AO3 logo and are looking for volunteers willing to coordinate it.


The Board has been busy keeping track of general org-wide goings-on.


Communications is currently offering its support to the new Support team as we plan for the coming of Open Beta. Board Member Rachel Barenblat, ADT member Zooey Glass, Legal Comm member Casey Fiesler, and DevMem-ber Monica will also be offering Comm some backup assistance for the rest of this term: thank you, guys!

Content Policy:

No update at this time.


Development had a pretty busy month which included running our October donations drive. Thanks to all of you, it was our most successful drive yet: we raised a total of US$15,573, which will go into our coffers to support colocation and bandwidth costs, organizational expenses (including the occasional unpredictable ones), and the projects we hope to dive into in Year Three. Thanks to everyone for your generous support — it means the world to us!


Documentation added two new members this month – welcome JJ and groovekittie! We continue to move about behind the scenes, organizing everything in our path to help keep things running smoothly. The next couple of months will be busy ones for us as we prepare for the end of the current term and get things shipshape for next year.


The Elections committee is proud to have announced that Elizabeth Yalkut and Allison Morris will be joining the OTW board in the next term. Although we didn’t get to hold a competitive election this year, we are delighted to have attracted two such marvelous new Board members. Welcome, Elizabeth and Allison!

Finance Update:

No update at this time.


The academic journal has upgraded its software and moved to a new server. The move was a bumpy one, with a 2-week-long outage, but the shiny new results will make up for the inconvenience. TWC is on track for No. 4, a guest-edited issue about Supernatural. This issue is no longer accepting unsolicited content because we’re so close to print. No. 5, a general issue, is on track as well.


The Legal Committee continues it role of supporting other OTW Committees as needed. Over recent weeks, we have advised Communications, assisted DevMem and Translation on phrasing, and reviewed more licenses for ADT. In addition, we continue to respond to numerous and varied queries from the public as they arise, and have this past month responded to a journalist seeking comment on Fairey v. AP, and to fan-centered organization on the 501c3 process, as well as providing advice to individual fans on fandom-corporate partnerships, and suggesting options for dealing with spam farmers.

Open Doors:

The Open Doors committee is continuing to work with Fanlore on the Geocities Rescue project. Archivists, if you can, back up as much as you can to your own HD and we’ll keep working with you to help these fan works find a stable, longterm online home with OTW.


No update at this time.


No update at this time.

Vidding History:

No report at this time.


The Volunteers committee is keeping busy preparing for the end of this term and the beginning of the new one in January. Many committees are looking for volunteers or staffers. Do you have some bold new ideas? Want to contribute and learn new skills? Check out our Willing to Serve post and contact us. Volunteers & Recruiting is looking for people, too! Do you have a bit of a micro-manager in you? We want you! * bribes with cookies *


Congratulations to our own Allison Morris, who will be joining the OTW Board next term! We’re all excited for her. <3 Besides celebrating the news, we've been working hard behind the scenes with Development & Membership to support the recent donation drive. Next up, we'll be working with Open Doors to move their Special Collections index, currently a standalone HTML site, into the Drupal content management system we use for the rest of transformativeworks.org.


No update at this time.

AD&T Weekly Meeting – 24 October 2009

Welcome to our weekly update from the chair of ADT. All the news that’s fit to print about the progress of the Archive of Our Own is below the cut. This post may also be found on the Archive of Our Own which is commentable by anyone with or without an AO3 account. Comments are disabled elsewhere as we’re noticing people ask similar questions and would like everyone to be able to share the discussion.

Sat 11pm meeting. I was sick and slept instead but had peppered the agenda with comments and the latest schedule updates (hopefully coherent ones) and sent out a plea for someone to chair the meeting. The lovely [info - personal] bingeling came to my rescue and stalking the transcript after says they don’t need me at all :p

  • Deploy schedule: Next deploy to Beta currently scheduled for 8th November (Release 0.7.1). Also I gotta stop saying ‘push it back’ when talking scheduling because it doesn’t mean the same thing to all of us and I should know better 🙁
    • Admin News Post comment email: the link in the email doesn’t work, we’ve put the underscore back in the right place for this deploy.
    • AO3 Logo: Temporary logo is on Test. Official Logo competition deferred until we can recruit someone to run it. Heh, the front page in Test is currently displaying: "Latest work: This is a story with very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very verylong title" *loves on testers*
    • Autocomplete: Stopped working for the Post New form when entering tags. We’ve got a fix for that – it’s on Test – and can I just say [info - personal] rustler is awesome 🙂
    • Invitations: the code is on Test (yay [info - personal] elz!) , it can do all sorts of things. I turned the invitations queue on and off, entered some email addresses into the queue, checked my predicted invite time and bounced around excitedly. I also issued invite codes to my user account, sent them to other testers and generally poked things. It still need some enhancements (this is the first version of a whole new feature and a big piece of work) but we’re very happy with it so far.
  • Open Beta: Mid November. We think we can squeeze the planned stability period (where you deploy code then stare at it and wait for it to explode) down to one week . We wanted two but that was when were doing one deploy containing EVERYTHING rather than splitting it into 0.7.0 (on Beta now) and 0.7.1 (coming to Beta soon).
  • Test Team: Are amazing! A piece of work we do after a code deploy is to go through all the issues and confirm that the changes got deployed and are working as expected. That means they do all the testing/verification they did on Test again on Beta (except without creating junk data). There were 89 in total (there were 90 but one fix failed testing) and we’re already down to only 39 waiting for verification.
  • Stuff coming up:
    • Admin Stats! Yes, I know I’m the only one who cares but OMG I care a lot! *cradles the JQuery plugin tenderly*
    • Languages: We’re at the point where we can talk to the Translation team about what languages to add so that people can specify what language they are posting in.
    • Notes: *grins* Yes, you may have 5k character Notes, we’re extending the limit.
    • Task Queue: We’re conscious that one of the first things you do with a shiny new account is import your back catalogue of works, this hasn’t been a problem in Closed Beta because we add people in such small amounts. Performance testing suggests the AO3 can handle quite a lot before it slows down but we’re looking at ways to make this not an issue. Long term we’ll probably set up a task queue so you can start importing and it will import when it can if it can’t straight away.

If there are things you want to do/say – feel free to share either in comments, or by volunteering, or by messaging or whatever medium you’re comfortable with. You are invited to this party 🙂

Concerning Fanfiction

Mercedes Lackey has announced the following on her blog:

News: Concerning Fanfiction:

As you folks already know, my agent, Russel Galen, has in the past been opposed to fanfiction. However, he is also Cory Doctorow’s agent now, and Cory is a persuasive little gnome.

As a result of this, I am happy to announce that we are officially permitting fanfiction to be licensed as derivative fiction under the Creative Commons umbrella…

Thanks, Cory, for helping Mercedes and her agent recognize that fans’ reaction to works can (and already do!) legitimately include creative responses. We don’t think we need her permission, but we’re always happy to have her blessing–and as fans of hers, we’re happy that she’s happy! 🙂