If my work is published in the OTW’s archive, what applies, my local laws on fair use, or US law?

Because the OTW and its servers are based in the US, we believe that US law applies to content in the Archive of Our Own, even if the author is a resident or national of a different country. However, different countries make different claims about the reach of their laws. Your country of origin’s laws are likely to apply to you. It is possible that some sections of the OTW policies are broader, or perhaps more restrictive, than a specific jurisdiction’s laws.

Other organizations that serve an international audience are dealing with the varying legal regimes under which their users live, work and play. Creative Commons, for example, has developed a multi-step process to “port” their licenses internationally by “both linguistically translating the licenses and legally adapting them to particular jurisdictions.

Ideally, we would like to develop a similar process within the OTW, but for the time being, we are happy to work with our friends at EFF when engaging in legal advocacy outside the United States. If you would like to work on non-US legal issues or education, please contact the Volunteers Committee.

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