• Update from OTW Board Members-Elect

    Tags: OTW Board, Announcement

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    There have been a lot of changes in the OTW in the past few days. The current Board of Directors has resigned, effective December 15. We know there has been some confusion, and we wanted to share with you the situation as it currently stands.

  • OTW Fannews: Improve Your Life

    Tags: Academia, Education and Curriculum, Music, Public and Private Identities, Sports, News of Note

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    The American Library's Association's Center for the Future of Libraries has a mission which involves identifying "emerging trends relevant to libraries and the communities they serve." Included in their trends is an entry on fandom. In the "Why It Matters" section, they write "As cultural institutions that preserve and provide access to books, video, music, and an increasing array of media, fandoms may be obvious partners in promoting literacy, engagement with culture, and media creation. Fandom increasingly assumes active creation – writing, recording, drawing, remixing, role-playing – rather than just passive consumption of media. This could make it an important space for libraries to design programming and instruction around, especially in ways that promote Connected Learning that is highly social, interest-driven, hands-on, and production oriented."

  • Board Appointment of Last Place Candidate to Empty Board Seat

    Tags: Elections, OTW Board, Announcement

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    ETA November 23, 2015: The 2015 Board has resigned, effective December 15. They will be replaced by Atiya Hakeem and Matty Bowers, who will join the Board no later than December 1.

    ETA2 November 23, 2015: Due to these unusual events, Elections Staff released the ranking information about this year's candidates with permission from 5 of the 6 candidates. However, as our goal is to promote an equal and harmonious Board of Directors, we do not intend to reveal this information in future elections unless a situation like the one we witnessed last weekend happens again.

    On 14 August 2015, the Board voted to change the size of the Board from 9 Directors to 7. Before this vote, the Board informed Elections that only 2 seats would be available to be filled this year. This is complicit with Article V, #3 of the by-laws, which states that at least 2 Directors must be elected yearly, and if the Board has 7 or more Directors, at least one-third of the Directors must be elected yearly.

  • Board of Directors Update

    Tags: OTW Board, Announcement

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    The OTW Board of Directors voted at its regularly scheduled meeting on 22 November to appoint Andrea Horbinski to serve the remainder of the term vacated in 2014 by Anna Genoese, ending 31 December 2016. Filling board vacancies by appointment is a normal part of board work provided for in Article V §4 of the OTW Bylaws, and the Board has done so at multiple points in the past.

  • OTW Fannews: For Reals

    Tags: Fannish Communities, Fannish Histories, Fannish Practices, News Media, News of Note

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    The BBC noted that fans have been right all along in their devotion to popular culture, given that it's adding to the stories of old. "Our modern civilisation, like all civilisations before it, has settled around a set of myths and legends as the basis of its culture. They are more complex, more interesting, more sophisticated, and with a much richer interaction between creators and fans than you might think. Far from being mere films or comic books, they are whole extended fictional universes, entirely self-consistent, with deep histories, hundreds of characters, and even a form of theological scholarship."

  • Save the Link Needs Your Voice

    Tags: Intellectual Property, Legal Committee, Technology, Spotlight

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    As we announced in July, the OTW has partnered with the Save the Link coalition in an effort to prevent countries around the world from creating laws that would punish online services for linking to disfavored material or otherwise harm people’s right to use hyperlinks online.

    Recently, a draft communication on copyright reform in the European Union was leaked. This document reveals that the European Commission is considering new copyright rules that could restrict the ability of online platform (like the AO3, Tumblr, and other fan favorite sites) to contain links to copyrighted material, or could even make those platforms legally liable for content posted by their users. Earlier this year, the European Parliament firmly rejected a proposal that could have resulted in a new EU-wide ‘Link Tax’, and this leaked document appears to be an attempt to raise the issue once more.

  • OTW Fannews: What's in a Name?

    Tags: Commercialization of Fans, Entertainment Industries, Fan Videos, Fanart, Fanfiction, Fannish Practices, Intellectual Property, News Media, News of Note

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    The New Statesman weighed in on an important discussion as fanworks become more well known: what actually counts as one? "It comes down, as it often does, to money. Because money, and a lack of it, is at the heart of long-held tensions about fanworks. Fanfiction is overwhelmingly the product of unpaid labour, millions and millions of words given freely, whether for legal reasons or community norms. Because it isn’t compensated – and because it is so often done by women it is devalued, as an art form and as a way to spend one’s time. When money is added to the mix, whether in giant pull-to-publish book deals or, increasingly, fanfiction contests and authors sponsored by television networks and Hollywood studios, the place that fanworks occupy in the vast sphere of adaptation and reworking begins to shift. And not always for the better."

  • 2015 OTW Board Election Results

    Tags: Elections, Announcement

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    On 10 November, Atiya Hakeem and Matty Bowers (in alphabetical order) were officially elected to the OTW Board of Directors. The new members of the Board will formally begin their term overlap on December 1. Congratulations to Atiya and Matty, and thank you to all of the candidates for their hard work and dedication.

    The Elections Committee would also like to thank you to everyone who got involved by spreading the word, asking the candidates questions, and, of course, voting! We look forward to seeing all of you again next year.

  • OTW Fannews: Shouting it Out Loud

    Tags: Academia, Fanfiction, Fannish Histories, Gender and Sexuality, News of Note

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    More people are discussing the long reach of fandom into their lives. The Huffington Post spoke to the OTW and others about fanfiction and sexuality. "The opportunity to displace these risky desires, not just into pseudonymous fictions, but onto fictional characters, makes fanfic a welcoming sexual space for girls and women, where they can safely spin their more illicit fantasies off into the minds and actions of distinctly separate alter-egos. 'It made me much more comfortable in myself. More comfortable in my sexuality and going out to find other erotica and pornography without having to feel ashamed,' recalled Amy, 23, who lives in Portland and got into fan fiction early in high school. 'These are characters, but they’re also people, they do normal people things and that includes sex and other sexual activities.'”

  • OTW Fannews: No Place to Hide

    Tags: Business Models, Entertainment Industries, Fanfilms, YouTube, News of Note

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    AdNews discussed the use of YouTube fandoms as a marketing bonanza. "The quality of talent on display, and the reaction of fans got the point across about the premium content YouTube has to offer...Stuart Bailey, chief digital officer at OMD Australia, believes that, 'long gone are the days when clients would associate YouTube with skateboarding cats and other such content. It now has content credential in spades. Google certainly flexed their ‘influencer’ muscles and showed that some of their YouTube talent are stars in their own right, with engaged and loyal audiences - some queuing from 6am to catch a peek of their favourite YouTube stars,' Bailey said. 'The trick will be how to tap into that talent to not only communicate with a brand’s customers and consumers but to add value and customised experiences.'"