March 2020 Newsletter, Volume 144


Accessibility, Design, & Technology (AD&T) deployed releases that made changes to user accounts, admin accounts, our testing environment, and more. Notable in these releases were changes to how kudos are recorded and stored, in order to ensure that we don’t run out of room for the Archive’s 640 million and rising kudos. A side effect of this work was the removal of duplicate kudos from works, but as AD&T explained, the only kudos removed were duplicates from the same user: no unique kudos from unique users were removed.

The Archive of Our Own saw some bumpy traffic this month, with AD&T reporting a drop in page views at the beginning of the month, shortly after users in China became unable to access the site. This was followed by a rise near the end of the month to levels not seen since our usual “busy” January period, with 279 million page views the week of March 17 to March 22.


AD&T wasn’t the only committee that noticed an effect from the AO3 outage in China. Legal helped users and committees respond to related queries, and Communications staffers were busy this month due to a rapid number of interview requests. As a result, Communications has added a number of OTW mentions to our Press Room. Special shoutout to our two Weibo account moderators, who have done an amazing job wading through tens of thousands of messages and serving as an invaluable interface for the OTW with Chinese fans.

The Board of Directors kept busy with an open house on March 8 that invited users to ask questions about who Board is and what they do. With help from committee chairs and from Communications, Board also released a news post detailing how volunteers and their work for the OTW may be affected by COVID-19, and encouraging fans to explore the OTW’s projects, keep creating, and stay safe.

TWC’s guest-edited issue No. 32, “Fandom and Politics,” came out on time on March 15. TWC and Communications also released an interview, Five Things Kristina Busse Said, that received a great response from fans who learned more about aca-fandom.

Systems had to get our vendor to replace some CPUs in our new servers (they’d delivered the wrong ones), which delayed things somewhat. They’ve also been working on some new firewall infrastructure and improving their monitoring.


In February, Tag Wrangling wrangled approximately 250,000 tags in 36,100 fandoms, and Support received about 1,850 tickets—twice the number of tickets Support received in February 2019. A third of these tickets were taken care of with the help of Translation. Meanwhile, Policy & Abuse had received about 1,300 tickets so far in March at the time of this writing.


From 22 February to 22 March, Volunteers & Recruiting received 91 new requests, and completed 95, leaving us with 9 open requests (including induction and removal tasks listed below).

As of 22 March the OTW has 829 volunteers. \o/ Recent personnel movements are listed below.

New Committee Chairs: Marion McGowan and Emma Lloyd (both Elections)
New Committee Staff: 1 AO3 Documentation staff, Rivka (Webs)
New Communications Volunteers: Amelie N and 1 other volunteer
New Translation Volunteers: Ayati, bel_thorne, chimyatta, Julija, Link, Lora, Melmëyen, Nira, V. T. Holmes, Yohanna, Zala and 3 other volunteers

Departing Committee Chairs: Michelle Dong (Open Doors)
Departing Committee Staff: buckwicks (Communications), HelmetParty (Development & Membership), 1 Policy & Abuse staffer, Michelle Dong (Open Doors and Volunteers & Recruiting)
Departing Tag Wrangler Volunteers: HazelDomain, Kaylie and 1 other volunteer
Departing Translation Volunteers: soumyaa and 1 other volunteer

For more information about the purview of our committees, please access the committee listing on our website.


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