I. THE 2017 ELECTION IS APPROACHING
Election season is upon us! The Elections committee was thrilled to announce the six candidates running this year for the three open spots on the OTW Board of Directors. The candidates are (in alphabetical order by given name):
- Claire P. Baker
- Danielle Strong
- Erica Dulin
- Gimena Calixto
- Jessie Camboulives
- Milena Popova
The voting period will be from August 11-14, 2017. If you were a member of the OTW (what does that mean?) as of June 30, 2017, then you are eligible to vote. That means that, if you began or renewed your membership anytime between July 1, 2016, and June 30, 2017, then you are eligible to vote, even if your membership expires sometime between July 1, 2017, and August 11, 2017. Check out our voting instructions for more information about how the election will be held.
Thank you to everyone who submitted a question for the candidates to answer. It’s great to see so many people invested in the future of the OTW. Be sure to follow @OTWElections on Twitter and otwelections on Tumblr for notifications of when new candidate answers are posted, as well as for information about upcoming live chats with candidates.
II. AT THE AO3
Accessibility, Design and Technology, with the help of several volunteers and staffers from other committees, has been testing the Archive’s big upgrade to Rails 4.2. The testing is a very time-consuming process that involves manually trying out each and every feature and setting on the Archive, but it’s nearing the end! Hopefully, Rails 4.2 will be deployed soon, and then work can start for the upgrade to Rails 5.0.
Tag Wrangling was excited to announce AO3’s 25,000th canonical fandom, which was Brainstorm (1983)! What’s your favourite small fandom? For updates about Tag Wrangling, as well as fun tags of the week, follow @ao3_wranglers on Twitter!
Open Doors had a busy June. They completed the imports of Due South Archive and The Hex Files and assisted a number of creators with claiming their works from these archives and others. They also announced the upcoming import of Hammer to Fall & Bang and Blame, with help from Communications and Translation. Special thanks to Tag Wrangling this month for their help with tag mapping recommendations for multiple archives and to the import wranglers for their help searching AO3 to prevent the importing of duplicate works from ScullySlash, Least Expected, and Daire’s Fanfic Refuge & HL Raven’s Nest.
III. LEGAL ADVOCACY
Legal has been staying busy on the advocacy front! In June, they filed a submission to the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) highlighting important issues for the upcoming negotiation of the NAFTA treaty. The filing advocated for an open and transparent negotiation process, and it emphasized the importance of including exceptions and limitations such as fair use in any provisions concerning intellectual property protection. Legal staffer Rebecca Tushnet followed up this submission by testifying before the USTR on June 27.
The OTW also participated in a large-scale action against proposed laws in New York State that would have vastly expanded New York rights of publicity in a way that would dramatically chill free speech about real people, including historical figures. We were joined by dozens of other nonprofits, trade associations, and professors, including many with whom we don’t often agree. The action was successful – New York rejected the legislation.
Legal also responded to a number of queries from fans, and they are also hard at work preparing for next month’s San Diego Comic Con. Stay tuned for more information soon, including panels that Legal personnel will be presenting at, and an event that all can attend!
IV. DOCUMENTING FANDOM
TWC‘s Queer Female Fandom issue, the publication’s 24th volume, came out on June 15. Thanks to the the editorial and production teams for all their hard work. Be sure to check out the issue for articles on Supergirl, yuri, racial dynamics in femslash, and more!
Lastly, Fanlore got a new main page this month! In addition to a new look, this update includes a weekly Featured Article. Want to nominate your favourite articles or vote on current nominations? Then check out the Featured Articles page on Fanlore.
V. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE PEEPS
As of the 27th of June, the OTW has 631 volunteers. \o/ Recent personnel movements are listed below.
New Committee Staff: Judy Wen (Elections), Hazel Seanor (Elections), Arly Guevara (Strategic Planning), royrichard (Strategic Planning) and 2 Strategic Planning staffers
New AD&T Coder Volunteers: Nana
New Translator Volunteers: AdaVila, someplacelikebolivia, Ellisa_SS, nanabanana, ayerenne, steelwater, Audrey Lee
Departing Committee Chairs: briar_pipe (Elections)
Departing Committee Staff: 3 Abuse staffers, 1 AO3 Documentation staffer, 4 Support staffers
Departing AD&T Coder Volunteers: 7
Departing Tag Wrangler Volunteers: 3
Departing Translation Volunteers: Amalia Blondet and 1 other
For more information about the purview of our committees, please access the committee listing on our website.