Owning the servers: A design fiction exploring the transformation of fandom into "our own"
Keywords:AO3, Archive of Our Own, Fair use, Fan history, Fan works, Ownership, Platform
This essay serves as a speculative design fiction that traces the history of fan creation platforms from the past to the present and finally to a possible future. Using the history and success of the Archive of Our Own (https://archiveofourown.org/) as a focal point, I consider the importance of owning the servers as a way for fan communities to create and preserve culture and reassert values. Examining one possible legal and technological future with an air of optimism allows us to consider what fannish communities can do now to maintain a path of our own.
TWC Nos. 25 onward are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC by 4.0). For an explanation of the journal's reasoning, see the TWC editorial Copyright and Open Access. TWC Nos. 1 through 24 are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC 3.0) license, with TWC, not the author, retaining copyright.
Presses whose policies require written permission for reproduction should contact the TWC Editor; such permission is routinely given for no fee.