Many fans discovered the OTW while exploring the Archive of Our Own or Fanlore, but not all our visitors realize that the Organization for Transformative Works is an advocacy group, or what that might mean.
To the OTW, it means that we don’t just provide spaces to protect and preserve fanworks. It means that we also add our voices to public conversations about fandom and fanworks. We speak out in order to help improve public policies and perceptions about fanworks and remix culture that affect us as fans. Your support helps us to speak up in more ways and in more places about issues that affect us all.
The OTW feels it’s especially important to advocate for female-driven fan spaces. Far too often, modern fandom is seen as a largely male domain, be it in the areas of sports fandom, traditional sci-fi fandom, or newer fandoms. We believe in the value of online fanwork-based communities in which female, queer, genderqueer, POC, and other marginalized fans congregate.
To us, advocating for these spaces doesn’t just start and stop with online outreach. That’s why we are focusing more on doing outreach in real-life spaces like conventions. This year, we’ve sent OTW representatives to Comic-Con and Worldcon, and we’re working on developing even more resources for anyone who wants to represent OTW or its projects at conventions.
We also recognize that outreach is sometimes larger than just fandom: that’s why we recently sponsored an event at Dragon Con with EFF to advocate for online privacy rights. We also have had presences at other fandom-friendly events like AdaCamp, an open source training camp aimed at women in tech and open source culture. And, as always, through our legal work we have advocated for empowered fan spaces and greater creative freedom under current copyright laws. These activities allow our volunteers the chance to gain confidence in their skills and abilities while improving the OTW’s ability to do its work.
We believe that our advocacy helps us create a more empowered fan space for ourselves and our community. By making a donation to the OTW, you can ensure that we can continue to use our voices to speak out for fanworks for years to come.