March 2009 Newsletter, Vol 26

Welcome to our next newsletter; get progress reports from all your favorite committees and stay on top of your favorite OTW projects–right under the cut!


The Abuse Committee has hit the ground running, and we’ve begun creating a tracking system that adheres to OTW confidentiality requirements. Over the next few months, we’ll be working to develop a set of Abuse policies and procedures that will balance transparency and confidentiality.


AD&T spent most of the last two weeks on our recent deploy of new code to the Archive of Our Own. We’re now on revision 1110!

Our coder group is working on a upgrade of Rails (the software the Archive is built on) which should give us the ability to do a lot of cool new stuff. This is very pleasing to all of us as the new version is more efficient and works better internally.

Translations 1.0 is now available to our Translators and we are developing the design for Translations 2.0. Tag Wrangling has now been active for 2 weeks, we have wrangled 4,204 tags and have another 2,292 to go. We’re still working hard on this! The Archive now boasts 528 different Fandom tags and 2,300 Character tags.

Tag Wrangling marked off Version 0.5 on the public roadmap which is an important milestone. We’re over half way there people! The design for Version 0.6 Browsing is almost ready for the first round of review (we already built Searching) and we’re starting the design for Version 0.8 Community and Challenges. We are delaying Version 0.7 Subscriptions in order to work on 0.8 as we now see it as more important.

We also have a number of smaller projects running including improvements to how Pseuds handle and the way Warnings are displayed on stories.


The Board has been setting org-wide goals for March, and has also been working hard to support the March Membership drive. Board members Francesca Coppa and Rebecca Tushnet are currently off speaking at the Mashup/Remix 2009 conference at the Moritz College of Law.


The Communications team, with the help of some of our volunteer graphic designers, has made some new OTW flyers; we also premiered the launch of a new OTW lapel button at Escapade. We have also been expanding the OTW’s presence on various social networking systems; in addition to Livejournal & InsaneJournal, look for us on Facebook, MySpace, as a “studio” on, on iMeem, YouTube, and Deviantart. We’ve also renewed our Twitter and Delicious accounts.

Content Policy:

Content Policy is working on tidying up the TOS, clarifying questions that have arisen, and making sure the actual policy dovetails with the Archive code. Additionally, we’re working to balance the TOS requirements with the needs of extant archives coming in through Open Doors, and creating a coherent policy that applies to all works in the Archive.


We’ve been working on getting a new system in place for our second annual membership drive, which is going on right now. You can read about the drive at the OTW blog. If you’ve donated before, you’ll probably notice that the setup is very different now, and hopefully easier on everyone. We hope you’ll choose to contribute again (or for the first time!) during the week-long drive.


Our brand-spanking new Documentation committee has been getting organized and recruiting members under the awesome leadership of the lovely Margie. So far we’ve added Amy, Cinco, and carpet diemon to the committee, and also worked out a deal with Communications to share Laura JV.

This new committee runs our internal wiki (not the Fanlore wiki), which is a resource for storing and sharing the pages and pages (and pages!) of documentation and reference materials our committees generate.

If you’ve got some free time, a knack for organizing information, and a willingness to learn how to edit a wiki (or even better–experience editing a wiki, though this is not required), we’d like to talk to you about being on Documentation! Get in touch with the Volunteers & Recruiting committee via the contact form.


Elections is looking ahead to the election season, and thinking about new ways to document our policies and processes.

Finance Update:

FinCom has just filed the state required annual finance report with the state of Delaware, in which OTW is incorporated. We’ve also been working with DevMem in preparation for the upcoming membership drive, and drafting the formal annual report for OTW.


The academic journal team is proud to present its second issue, a special number on gaming, which goes live on March 15th! Find us at:

As you may know, every other TWC issue is dedicated to specific topics: as a reminder, our Spring 2010 issue will focus on _Supernatural_ and our submission deadline of May 1, 2009 is drawing near! See the call for papers here:

Our next special number is scheduled for Spring 2011: “Fan Works and Fan Communities in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction”, which will focus on the rich history of fans and their engagement with a variety of objects of fandom. We just issued our formal call for papers, which you can find here:


In May, the United States Copyright Office will hold hearings on proposed exemptions to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, including an Electronic Frontier Foundation proposal that will assist vidders. The Legal Committee has filed comments in support of the exemption, and is planning to send a representative to testify at the hearings.

Open Doors:

The Open Doors committee is putting its final touches on our zomg amazing Zine Preservation Project – stay tuned!


The Systems committee has been working closely with OTW’s DevMem and Webmasters to get, install, and test the new software for the drive.


We’ve welcomed new volunteers to our language teams (yay!) and have begun translating the interface and tools of the Archive. We’ve also worked on translating texts for Development and over at the OTW page we’ve been busy with the 2007 report and the Vidding History pages.

Vidding History:

Hey, we were on NPR! OTW Board members and a number of prominent vidders were featured on Vidders Talk Back To Their Pop-Culture Muses, which aired on NPR’s “All Things Considered.” Board members Rebecca Tushnet and Francesca Coppa are also speaking this weekend at Mashup/Remix 2009 at the Moritz College of Law.


We’ve added two new committee members, Sandi Campbell and Anne Jonas. Welcome! Since the beginning of the new term, we’ve been very busy adding all our new staffers and volunteers to the Org, and we’re also pecking away at our documentation.


The Webmasters have been working closely with Development & Membership to prepare for the membership drive.


A ‘Fanlore Live’ panel at Escapade has allowed us to make a headstart on gathering oral histories (thank you for all the volunteers who helped us with their typing skills!); a permanently open Fanlore chatroom has been approved and should soon welcome you to come hang out with other wiki fans at any time, night or day; we’re continuing to rewrite, clarify and generally clean up and adapt our policies and documents; and of course, our outreach efforts are also ongoing.

  1. Michelle commented:

    This is just as good a place as any for my question. I wondered where the invites for AO3 have gone. I don’t need one currently, but it would be nice if I could point people towards it who are looking for an archive.

    • fcoppa commented:

      Actually, the invites were a mistake! We’re still in beta, and so right now, invites are very limited; the only way to get an account is to leave feedback on the beta version code. We WILL be moving to an invite system soon, however, so stay tuned.

      • Michelle commented:

        Ah, okay! Thanks for clearing that up:)

  2. datenshi commented:

    as a “studio” on

    If you guys mean, it might be best to spell that out, as leads to an entirely different site 🙂

    • fcoppa commented:

      Belated thank you!–fixing that now!