- The best upcoming video games to look out for in February 2020 7 Years Ago
- TikTok teens use AirPods and Google Translate to secretly talk in class 7 Years Ago
- Video shows corpses of coronavirus victims lying in China hospital Today 3:44 PM
- Kid meets Slipknot after drumming video goes viral Today 2:30 PM
- Channing Tatum responds to troll who tried to compare Jenna Dewan and Jessie J’s looks Today 1:46 PM
- Grindr pulls an ‘I don’t know her’ after Eminem suggests he uses the app Today 12:48 PM
- Here are the top 10 most popular Instagram models in 2020 Today 12:21 PM
- ‘The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina’ takes its characters on a fantasy adventure to Hell in season 3 Today 11:37 AM
- Woman no longer in sorority, school after racist MLK post Today 10:45 AM
- Netflix’s ‘Miss Americana’ starts to deconstruct the myth of Taylor Swift Today 10:32 AM
- Teens charged with attempted arson after participating in TikTok ‘outlet challenge’ Today 8:56 AM
- ‘American Dirt’ is a metaphor for a white country built on the back of immigrants Today 6:00 AM
- This woman told two students to ‘speak English’ and people are not having it Friday 9:53 PM
- Iconic 1968 drag documentary ‘The Queen’ finally released on Netflix Friday 9:29 PM
- This TikTok account for Chancellor Palpatine is hilarious Friday 8:43 PM
Fanfiction finds a place in Time’s 50 Best Websites of 2013
Fanfiction community Archive of Our Own (AO3) scores some major mainstream recognition.
Time Magazine’s 50 Best Websites of 2013 features some old favourites (SoundCloud, Feedly) along with more esoteric sites like Everything Is Terrible. But for one online subculture, a spot on the 50 Best list was another step towards mainstream recognition.
Yes, for the first time, a fanfiction archive has made it onto the list.
Compared to multi-million dollar behemoths like Wattpad (where Sony once paid someone to post “official” One Direction fanfiction), Archive of our Own might seem like a relatively small fanfic site. However, while some say “small”, others might describe it as elite. Although there are no quality-based entry requirements to post on AO3, you do need an invite code to sign up for an account. And for whatever reason, AO3 generally seems to attract a crowd of talented, mature fan artists, writers, and podficcers.
Fifty Shades of Grey may be the mainstream face of fanfiction, but it hasn’t done much to dispel the image of fanfic as being “mommy porn”, or just poorly-written in general. Which isn’t to say that lots of fanfiction isn’t erotica — just that you could easily do a lot better than the strangely banal antics of Anastasia Steele and her amoral sugar-daddy. And that’s where Archive of our Own comes in.
As we pointed out in our guide to finding the the good (fanfiction) porn, AO3 is the best place to go if you’ve just finished watching, say, Breaking Bad, and you want to know what its fandom thinks is the best fanfic on offer. You can sort search results by hit count, “kudos” (similar to Facebook “Likes”), or comments, as well as a variety of character and ratings-based criteria. So if you want to make sure you only get G-rated search results for Monsters Inc. stories to read to your kid, that’s cool too. The search engine and tag-wrangling for AO3 is better than the ones you’ll find on plenty of more “serious” websites.
As Lev Grossman put it in Time:
“Archive of Our Own makes it easy: it’s the most carefully curated, sanely organized, easily browsable and searchable nonprofit collection of fan fiction on the Web, and it serves all fandoms equally, from The A-Team to Zachary Quinto and beyond.”
As a community-run project, AO3 is a real success story. Run by volunteers and primarily funded by donations, its users are loyal enough that they managed to raise $16,000 in a fanfic auction last week. Now rated alongside sites like Mental Floss and TED-ed on Time’s 50 Best list, AO3’s users will surely be glad to see the archive receive the recognition it deserves.
Image via nupao/DeviantArt
Gavia Baker-Whitelaw is a staff writer at the Daily Dot, covering geek culture and fandom. Specializing in sci-fi movies and superheroes, she also appears as a film and TV critic on BBC radio. Elsewhere, she co-hosts the pop culture podcast Overinvested. Follow her on Twitter: @Hello_Tailor