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AO3 logo wearing a party hat, with the words '1 Million Celebration'

The Organization for Transformative Works is thrilled to announce another milestone for the Archive of Our Own: one million registered users!

one million users

The Archive of Our Own was conceived based on a desire to have a fan-controlled space where fanworks could be hosted without commercial influence or content restrictions. It took two and a half years to go from that initial idea to Open Beta, but on November 14th, 2009, members of the public began opening accounts on AO3. The archive began to grow, and the milestones began piling up. We hit the incredible one million fanworks milestone on February 15th, 2014, and instituted the first annual International Fanworks Day on February 15th, 2015, in celebration.

When the Archive reached its two million fanworks milestone, we celebrated the dedication of all our users, registered and not, who inspire us to volunteer and help keep the OTW's projects going. Now that we've reached one million registered users, we want to celebrate and thank them in particular--the creators sharing fanworks, moderators hosting challenges and exchanges, readers curating collections, and commenters encouraging everyone to keep up the good work. Without your support and creativity, none of this would be possible. Without users, there would be no Archive of Our Own, and we appreciate all of the passion and hard work you share with us every day.

There's a lot of excitement to come here at the Archive, so keep visiting to see what's happening next. Thank you again for all of your support, and we hope you continue to enjoy the Archive!

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Stepping Stones: Organization for Transformative Works Membership Drive, April 3-9

You might have noticed some loud partying and fireworks recently over the Archive of Our Own surpassing a phenomenal one MILLION fanworks. Fanwork creators, viewers, volunteers, and fans greeted this milestone with much joy and celebration and a jaw-dropping explosion of fanwork — even an infographic! As one of the site's coders put it, February saw a lot of "twirling in sleep-deprived excitement."

The best part? That's not even the only amazing milestone the Archive has reached in 2014. In addition to having more than one million fanworks, the site has also become home to over a quarter of a million members — a number that's rising every day!

The Accessibility, Design and Technology committee houses many sleep-deprived twirling coders who donate their time to build the Archive. AD&T tells us there have been other achievements recently — less visible, but no less important:

  • We've been adding new servers and repurposing some old ones to improve Archive performance and redundancy. Your past donations made these purchases possible!
  • The Archive's Tumblr, created in 2011, has seen rapid growth. AD&T has worked diligently to supply it with informative and innovative content, and their efforts are paying off!
  • The Archive's Twitter account is very close to hitting the 20,000 follower mark! AD&T is thrilled that people who read the tweets aren't getting left in the dark when there's a problem with the site or the servers.
  • At the beginning of this year, AO3's page views climbed to almost 50 million page views each week. That's almost double the views for last January; and that number, too, is steadily climbing.

AO3's numerous volunteers are continuously improving its features, and in the middle of all the celebrating, they're making plans for the future. To check out some of AO3's planned features, view the section "The Road Ahead" in the AO3's continuously updated roadmap.

If any of those one million fanworks was something you enjoyed, or had fun creating, please help AD&T, Tag Wranglers, Systems, Abuse, Support, and Quality Assurance & Testing continue to make the Archive a useful and precious tool within the fan community. These volunteers give generously of their time and energy to ensure that the site runs smoothly and bring you the AO3 you love.

Your donation of US$10 or more will help us take the next steps toward partying to the tune of two million fanworks in the future!

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Published:
2014-03-28 12:47:29 -0400
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Tomorrow the OTW will be holding the last of its four March events with our entertainment industry guests discussing "The Future of Fanworks" from 1500 to 1700 UTC (What time is that in my timezone?)

Edited to add: The chat has ended but you can read the transcript.

Also, if you missed any of our Milestone Month events you can catch up now!

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Published:
2014-03-14 15:06:44 -0400
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Banner by Alice of a question mark shaped out of communication objects such as an envelope and TV

Tomorrow the OTW will be holding the second of its four March events discussing "The Future of Fanworks" from 0100 - 0300 UTC on March 15th/16th (What time is that in my timezone?)
  • Moderator: Jintian, OTW Communications staffer
  • Guest: cereta
  • Guest: yhlee
  • Guest: yifu

Edited to add: The chat has concluded but if you missed it, here's the transcript!

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Published:
2014-03-07 13:24:47 -0500
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Tomorrow the OTW will be holding the first of its four March events discussing "The Future of Fanworks." This will be a live chat with fan studies scholars from 1600-1800 UTC (What time is that in my timezone?)

Edited to add The chat has concluded but if you missed it, here's the transcript!

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Published:
2014-02-23 13:27:54 -0500
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Banner by caitie celebrating Fanlore's 500,000th edit

As we mentioned during our milestone weekend, today we're announcing four events that will continue our focus on fanworks while celebrating the OTW's project milestones. Starting on March 8, each Saturday next month we will be featuring a discussion on "The Future of Fanworks" with a variety of special guests.

March 8: Live chat with fan studies scholars on "The future of fanworks" from 1600-1800 UTC (What time is that in my timezone?)

READ THE TRANSCRIPT

March 16: Live chat with fans on "The future of fanworks" from 0100 - 0300 UTC (What time is that in my timezone?)

  • Moderator: Jintian, OTW Communications staffer
  • Guest: cereta
  • Guest: yhlee
  • Guest: yifu

READ THE TRANSCRIPT

March 21-24: Q&A posts with copyright practitioners and scholars on "The future of fanworks."

March 29: Live chat with entertainment industry representatives on "The future of fanworks" from 1500 to 1700 UTC (What time is that in my timezone?)

READ THE TRANSCRIPT.

Each chat will be held in our Public Discussion chatroom. Links to the chats will be posted shortly before the events. Although we have done our best to vary the chat times to accommodate fans in all timezones, the scheduling is ultimately dependent on guest availability. For anyone who can't join a chat live we expect to post transcripts of the events within 48 hours.

We would also like your input! We will be giving all panelists a set of 6 common questions as we believe it will be interesting to bring out different (or common) perspectives on the topics among the various groups. You can submit as many questions as you'd like but as we have limited time we can't guarantee any particular question will be included. We'll be looking for questions that are broadly applicable to all groups and are a good representation of "The future of fanworks" topic.

We will be collecting questions until 23:59 UTC on March 1. You can either post your questions here or submit them through our Communications form (just mention they're for the chats).

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Published:
2014-02-18 15:20:27 -0500
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AO3 logo wearing a party hat amidst confetti with text of '1 Million Celebration'

Now that our milestone weekend has ended, we're thinking of plans for 2015. Specifically, next February 15th, we'd like to hold an International Fanworks Day.

Why do we need a special day?

Because fanworks are awesome! That's why fans, the AO3, and many other archives around the web have ended up with hard drives full of fanworks and thousands to millions of users. Lots of people want to create them and even more want to access and save them. And like other communities that celebrate their special traditions, a specific date for celebrating fanworks speaks to their importance in our lives.

Because fanworks are international

Every part of the world creates fanworks, both about their own stories and those which have crossed national and language borders. Fanworks belong to everyone, and a fanworks day would be a great time to have them shared with someone new.

Because fanworks don't all look the same

Text, audio, multimedia, physical or digital, fanworks exist in all sorts of formats. Whatever time period they were created in, all of them should be discovered by someone who will love them.

Because someone is looking for them

Maybe someone's new to a fandom and wants to know where the goodies are. Maybe someone's never seen a fanwork before and wants to learn more about them. Maybe someone's been away from fandom for a while and wants to know where to go to get caught up. International Fanworks Day is a great opportunity to rec your favorite works to someone new, and to celebrate the reccers and rec communities for the work they do year-round.

Because fanworks are valuable and ought to be preserved

A sad moment for any fan is trying to access a fanwork they've enjoyed only to discover it's suffered a takedown, has gone offline, or has otherwise become unavailable. The OTW wants to put the issue of fanwork preservation out into public discussion, whether it's to remedy the legal problems fans may suffer when they try to share their work, or by creating safe spaces where fanworks can be housed when they're at-risk.

So how do we celebrate it?

Any way you want. Fans are the most creative people around and everyone enjoys fanworks for their own reasons. For example:

  • Fan 1 may make it a day of activism, reaching out to legislators or taking part in an organization's campaign for the public's right to remix

  • Fan 2 may make it a day of renewal, dusting off a WIP that was put aside when things got busy

  • Fan 3 may make it a day of reflection, writing meta about what fanworks mean to them

  • Fan 4 may make it a day of sharing, posting recs to their favorite works for others

  • Fan 5 may make it a day of traditions, organizing a Fanworks Day challenge
  • So tell us how you'll plan to celebrate!

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    Published:
    2014-02-16 18:28:32 -0500
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    AO3 logo wearing a party hat amidst confetti with text of '1 Million Celebration'

    Yesterday the AO3 reached its one million milestone and here are some things that have been taking place since.

    ao3million posts

    Since our milestone 354 new works have been posted to AO3 using the AO3 1 Million tag. \o/ for new fanworks!

    There have also been a lot of fic recs flying around on Twitter and Tumblr under the #ao3million tag. So if you're looking for something new, check those out and remember to add your own!

    It's been very moving to the staff and volunteers to read the many personal messages of how much AO3 has meant to people. Thank you for sharing those with us and also to the new donors who have stepped forward to help us keep things running!

    Parties!

    The organizers of Nine World's fanfic programming last year are hosting a party in London to celebrate AO3's milestone. It will be held on March 8 from 5-11 pm at The Blue Lion. Let them know you'll be there.

    If you are planning parties or events yourself, let us know here in comments and we'll keep updating this post with information.

    Another milestone!

    The AO3's sister project, Fanlore, has also zoomed past a milestone. Last year it was passing 25,000 articles. Now it's passed its 500,000th edit on the same day that AO3 hit 1 million! Please join us in congratulating all the editors, gardeners, and staffers who have worked on those many entries <3

    Yet to come

    We plan to keep celebrating through March, so stay tuned for our announcement next weekend with details of upcoming events. We'll be counting on your input! And in another few days we'll be letting you know about something we're planning for coming years. So keep an eye on AO3 News.

    In the meantime, let us know what you've been seeing, planning, and doing!

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