We are very happy to share this exciting news with you: the Archive of Our Own has reached 12 million published works! We are incredibly proud of our community for reaching this milestone, and we want to celebrate it with you.
We also thought we’d take the opportunity to share a tidbit of information on a topic that has confused some users new to the site. Unlike other sites you may use, AO3 does not have an algorithm! That means that when you post something to the site, it will show up in chronological order both on the Recent Works page as well as when you search on a tag. This also means there is no secret formula to getting your work in front of people, whether day of the week or time of day.
While this position might seem a bit old fashioned nowadays, we have several reasons to do so. First and foremost, this helps preserve the diversity and creativity of fanworks, since there is no pressure to conform to an algorithm’s criteria. Moreover, it is respectful of the users’ privacy, because we do not track their reading preferences. And lastly, this means that works won’t be penalised, as they all have the same chance to be seen and read and commented on, without any algorithm mediation. So we are proud to be algorithm-free!
And if you’re looking for works, one good way of finding them is via other fans’ bookmarks! When you’re reading you can click on a specific tag to go to its page (here’s one for Podfic & Podficced Works). There you can not only access works with that tag, but also bookmarks (in the top right). That way you can find works people have recced that use the tag.
The Archive of Our Own has reached 12 million published works, but this is only the beginning of a new chapter. We hope that you’ll keep being a part of this incredible adventure. Thank you for being part of the AO3 community!