AO3 News

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2019-01-27 15:13:24 -0500

To start the year right, we deployed some major improvements to the tag wrangling interface and fixed several collection and challenge bugs. Plus, editing a work will now display the proper word count upon preview!


  • Coders: Cesy, Elz, redsummernight, Sarken, Tal, ticking instant
  • Code reviewers: Ariana, cosette, james_, redsummernight, Sarken, ticking instant
  • Testers: antonomasia09, Arya_Sheppard, briar_pipe, Dre, Ebonwing, GoldenFalls, hhertzof, Izzy, JenS, Lady Oscar, Luin, MagnusIsMyRock, McBangle, mmmdraco, mumble, Paula, phoenixacid, PS, Qem, redsummernight, Sarken, ticking instant, VSSAKJ, WhitedSepu



  • [AO3-5584] - We found a few issues in our collection code that made it possible to handle or delete someone else's data, e.g. works submitted to another moderated collection. We have now put more rigorous ownership checks in place.
  • [AO3-4613] - Deleting a collection that was set to anonymous and/or unrevealed would trap the works previously added to that collection in a permanent anonymous and/or unrevealed state. /o\ Deleting such a collection will now set those works freeeee.
  • [AO3-5206] - In some cases, removing a work from an anonymous collection and adding it to a non-anonymous one in the same edit would keep the work mysteriously anonymous. Now it properly adopts the settings of the collections it's actually in.
  • [AO3-5533] - When posting a new work directly to an anonymous or unrevealed collection (as in, creating a new work with the collection name filled in), the work would occasionally not be marked unrevealed and anonymous. Even though it was in the collection! We believe we have fixed this baffling bug now, so fingers crossed.
  • [AO3-5544] - Possibly relatedly, some works in a collection would sometimes remain anonymous or unrevealed even after the collection as a whole was set to reveal all works. Awkward! We have put steps in place to prevent this as well.
  • [AO3-5569] - For extra testing fun, we added tests for the owner of an anonymous or unrevealed collection removing an item from the collection items page.

Tag Wrangling

  • [AO3-5493] - Assembling all unwrangled tags per fandom (i.e. from works posted to those fandoms) and sorting them into bins for the wranglers to handle, complete with usage counts, relied on awkward code that put quite a bit of stress on the database. We are now leaning on Elasticsearch to save and manage that data, which will improve page load times and generally make for a smoother wrangling experience.
  • [AO3-2270] - Previously, new character/relationship/additional tags would only show up in the aforementioned bins if their works used canonical fandom tags (e.g. "The Musketeers (2014)"). Now, the bins will also include unwrangled tags for works tagged with a synonym (e.g. "BBC The Musketeers"). For more context, see the Tag Wrangling committee's post on the improvements.


  • [AO3-1305] - Editing a work to remove or add words would not update the word count in the preview. Now it does! \o/
  • [AO3-4310] - In our work towards an Archive interface in many languages, we prepared another email template for translation.
  • [AO3-5494] - If you use disallowed special characters in a search or otherwise upset the search engine, you will now be greeted with a helpful error page instead of a sad error 500.
  • [AO3-5580] - We made sure old drafts are properly disposed of, even if they still somehow belong to deleted series.


  • [AO3-5579] - Updated Rails from 5.1.3 to, because it's the right thing to do.
  • [AO3-5600] - Fixed an issue with the gem we're using to create the graphs on the Statistics page.
  • [AO3-5581] - We improved tests using Elasticsearch so they don't delete and recreate test data unnecessarily.