Archive FAQ > Your Account

How do I create an account?

To create an account, you need an invitation code or link (refer to the Invitations FAQ for more information). Once you receive an invitation email, use the link provided in the email to go to the account creation page. If you've been provided with an invitation link by another user, using this link should take you to the right place. If you have been given a plain code (a series of numbers and letters), then refer to How do I use an invitation code that is not a link?.

Will my user name be publicly displayed?

Yes, so be sure to choose something you're happy for others to know you by! Although you can use Pseuds (refer to the Pseuds FAQ) to post under different names on the Archive, your username will be publicly displayed next to the pseud. The connection will appear in the following format:

Pseud (Username)

What characters can I have in my account user name?

You can have letters, numbers, and underscores in your username. Due to the Archive's technical requirements, usernames can only be created using basic Latin script without spaces or diacritics, and without punctuation such as periods or commas. They must begin and end with a letter or a number, and they must be at least 3 characters and no more than 40 characters in length.

List of allowed characters: Aa, Bb, Cc, Dd, Ee, Ff, Gg, Hh, Ii, Jj, Kk, Ll, Mm, Nn, Oo, Pp, Qq, Rr, Ss, Tt, Uu, Vv, Ww, Xx, Yy, Zz, 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, _.

If you would like more flexibility, such as spaces and special characters, you can create a Pseud (refer to the Pseuds FAQ). Note that even if you use pseuds, your username will be displayed publicly next to the pseud (the format will be "Pseud (Username)"), so be sure that you choose one you're happy for others to know you as!

How do I verify my account?

After you have created an account, you will receive a link to activate it. Follow the link in the email to verify and activate your new Archive of Our Own account. If you don't verify your account within 14 days of setting it up, your registration will expire and you'll need to go through the account creation process again. For more information on invitations, please check out the Invitations FAQ.

If you don't get the activation email within a few hours of registering, please check your spam filter. If you still haven't received the email within 48 hours, please contact Support and ask them to help you activate your account. When contacting Support, please mention the email connected to your account. In order to ensure that the notification isn't blocked by your email server, you can add do-not-reply@archiveofourown.org to your whitelist.

What should I do if I think my account has been hacked?

If you suspect someone is using your account without your permission, you should immediately change your password and contact Abuse to make sure your account isn't used for any unwanted purposes.

How can I change the email associated with my account?

You can change the email associated with your account on the Edit Profile page by following these steps:

  1. Log in, and go to your dashboard by selecting the greeting "Hi, [username]!" and choosing "My Dashboard" from the menu, or by selecting your profile image.
  2. Select "Profile" from the menu found at the side of the page (or across the top in a mobile device).
  3. Use the "Edit My Profile" button, which can be found at the bottom of your profile.
  4. Use the "Change Email" button, which will be the last option below the page header.
  5. Enter the new email address in the "New Email" and "Confirm New Email" fields.
  6. Enter your password in the "Password" field
  7. Use the "Change Email" button to commit your changes. You will receive an email at your previous email address notifying you of the change.

How do I change my password?

You can change the password for your account on the Edit Profile page by following these steps:

  1. Log in, and go to your dashboard by selecting the greeting "Hi, [username]!" and choosing "My Dashboard" from the menu, or by selecting your profile image.
  2. Select "Profile" from the menu found at the side of the page or across the top in a mobile device.
  3. Use the "Edit My Profile" button, which can be found at the bottom of the page.
  4. Use the "Change Password" button.
  5. Enter the new password in "New Password" and "Confirm New Password" fields.
  6. Enter your current password in the field labelled "Old Password".
  7. Use the "Change Password" button at the bottom of the form to commit your changes.

How can I change my user name?

Before you change your username, please know that links from your old username will not be forwarded to your new username. Links to your individual works won't break, but any links to your Dashboard, Profile, Works page, Series page, and so on will break, because your username is part of the URL (link). Adding a Pseud instead will not cause the same problems (refer to the Pseuds FAQ for more information).

To change your username:

  1. Log in, and go to your dashboard by selecting the greeting "Hi, [username]!" and choosing "My Dashboard" from the menu, or by selecting your profile image.
  2. Select "Profile" from the menu found at the side of the page (or across the top on a mobile device).
  3. Use the "Edit My Profile" button, which is one of the options at the bottom of your profile.
  4. Use the "Change Username" button, which should be at the top of the Edit My Profile page.
  5. Fill out the form with your new username and your password.
  6. Use the "Change Username" button to commit your changes.

Usernames must be unique. You won't be able to change your username to one already taken by someone else. If someone has already taken the username you'd like, consider using a Pseud instead (refer to the Pseuds FAQ).

You can, however, change the capitalization of your existing username without changing your user page's web address. In other words, if you currently have the username "superfan", you can rename your account to "Superfan", "SuperFan", or even "SuPeRfAn" if you want, without breaking any links. When making a capitalization change, make sure that your browser hasn't saved your previous capitalizations—some will automatically change it back when you attempt to correct it.

How can I recover my lost username or password?

You can recover a lost password via the password recovery form. You must enter either your username or the email address associated with your account in the corresponding field and use the "Reset Password" button. If you've forgotten your username, entering your email address will retrieve this as well as resetting your password. Your details will be emailed to you at the address associated with your Archive account. If you have lost access to the email address associated with your Archive account as well, then please contact Abuse for help.

How do I delete my account?

Deleting your account will remove your works from the Archive. If you would like to delete your account but want to keep your works online, please consider orphaning your works (read more in the Orphaning FAQ). When you delete your account, you are automatically asked if you would like to Orphan your works or delete them.

You can delete your account on the Profile page:

  1. Log in and go to your dashboard by using the "Hi [username]!" menu on the top right of the page and selecting "My Dashboard" from the menu, or by your profile image at the top right of the page.
  2. Select "Profile" from the menu.
  3. Use the "Delete Account" button at the bottom of your profile. Please note that this is a permanent action. There is no way of restoring a deleted account.
  4. If you have any works, you will be asked if you would like to orphan them or delete them.

Where can I get more information if my question isn't answered here?

Some frequently asked questions about the Archive are answered in the broader Archive FAQ. Questions and answers about our Terms of Service can be found in the Terms of Service FAQ. You may also like to check out our Known Issues. If you need more help, please contact Support.