AO3 News

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2009-11-14 11:10:22 -0500

We're now eight hours into Open Beta for the Archive of Our Own, and we're really excited to see people signing up and using the Archive. So far, we've seen new 493 accounts created, and our new users have added more than 1500 new works in over 150 fandoms! Our lovely front-end coder and support volunteer Cesy has been tracking our progress with some beautiful graphs: New users and fandoms since Open Beta and New works since Open Beta.

If you have questions about what Open Beta is and how to get an account, please check out our Announcing Open Beta post \0/

Open Beta is still beta, and as such the site still has a few kinks. We really value the feedback that our new users have been giving us, and our lovely Support team are working hard to respond to queries as fast as possible. In order to keep our users informed, we'd like to highlight a few of the more common issues and questions here:

Invitation queue

If you sign up via our invitation queue and have trouble entering your email address, check there aren't any extra spaces before or after it. This has been causing a few problems with our validation - it's a bug that will be fixed very soon.

If you joined the invitation queue and when you check back it says you're not in the queue, then please check your spam for your invitation email. If it hasn't shown up, then submit a support request and we'll get back to you as quickly as possible.

Invitation codes

If you receive an invitation via email, you can just click on the link to get to the sign-up page and your code will be entered automatically.

If you are an existing user of the Archive and you'd like to give a code to a friend, then you need to give them an invitation link, not just the raw code. You can choose to send them an email via 'Invitations' on your user home, and this will happen automatically. If you want to share a code without sending an email, then go to 'Manage invitations' and you'll see an option to 'Copy and use' your existing codes. Click on this to copy the invitations link - it's this that you need to share with people.

Account names

The Archive of Our Own allows you to post under various pseuds. However, these are linked to your account name, and this name will be displayed publicly on the site. Therefore, ensure your user name is one you don't mind other people seeing! Please also take care entering it, as it's difficult to change once it's been created.

We'll be improving the information text on the account creation page shortly to make this clearer - sorry to those of you who were confused.

Problems with special characters

We are experiencing some problems with special characters such as em-dashes (the long 'double hyphen'), umlauts and accents. In some cases, these characters will cause posts or imports to be cut off. If this happens to you, a workaround at present is to use the raw html coding for the special character (see this list of html entities for reference). We're working hard to put in a proper fix as soon as possible. (We hope it won't discourage posting in languages other than English in the meantime - we're excited to see works in Czech, German, French and Spanish already!)

We'll keep updating our Known Issues page on the Archive of Our Own with any further bugs that arise, and you may also find the Archive FAQ helpful. We'll also be posting regular Archive News Posts on the AO3 (mirrored on the OTW News blog and mirrors) to keep everyone up-to-date on new developments.


Despite a few inevitable bugs, Open Beta has been going really well! The shiny AO3 servers (owned by fandom, y'all!) are holding up really well under the vigorous workout they're receiving, and we're totally jazzed to see people using and enjoying the Archive. Thanks so much to everyone who got us here! <3