Popular fan fiction page Archive of Our Own — often referred to as AO3 — was hit with an apparent cyberattack on Monday, stranding amateur writers and millions of readers addicted to their unofficial stories based on popular franchises.
Curiosity Thrives: AO3, the Beloved Fan Fiction Archive, Felled by DDoS Cyberattack – Get the Inside Scoop!
AO3, or Archive of Our Own as it is also called, is a popular fan fiction site that houses a large collection of stories created by users from various fandoms. The site provides a place for writers to showcase their work and allows fans to explore and interact with various narratives. Recently, however, the site suffered a DDoS attack (Distributed denial of service) which caused significant disruption to its users. This attack involved flooding the server with traffic in a huge amount, causing the site to be unreachable by many visitors.
DDoS attack against AO3 raised concern in the fan fiction community due to its importance as a platform for creative outlets and sources of entertainment. During the attack users were unable to access the site, upload their stories or communicate with other fandoms. The attack disrupted not only the site’s normal operation, but also the ability of the community to connect and enjoy a wide range of fan-created material. Although the motives for the attack remain unclear, AO3’s popularity within the fan fiction world has made it a target of those looking to undermine or disrupt the platform. AO3 is still working to minimize the damage caused by the cyberattack. They are also improving the security of the website to prevent any future incidents.
Users were still happy to be able to log in and read their Barbie, Batman, or Bobby Flay fanfic. Or their Don Lemon/Tucker Carlson Erotica. The AO3 has something to offer everyone.
Here is a breakdown on the website, and what has happened this week.
The website was created in 2009. The site hosts millions of stories, videos and podcasts created by fans about pop-culture characters. The stories vary from family-friendly up to R-rated.
AO3′s database includes about 11 million works based on 59,000 “fandoms,” There are also real-life characters such as Queen Elizabeth (perhaps a cross between Pope Francis, George Takei and other intellectual properties). Each story is tagged according to fandoms, tropes and alternate universes.
The website has won the Hugo Award 2019 for best related works. It is an important milestone as the Hugo Award represents one of sci-fi writing’s highest honors.
The Organization for Transformative Works is the owner of the company. This nonprofit organization, run by fans, defends works that are based on fanfiction from complaints about copyright. Donations are almost the only source of funding for this site.
Fanfic and LGBTQ Community
As of July, the website had at least 5,9 million users.
They are often fan fiction writers who create unofficial stories that draw inspiration from popular fiction and real-life celebrities. Visit to read stories set in an alternate universe, where Pat Sajak hosts a game show with Alex Trebek. “Wheel of Jeopardy,” As well as one, Sonic the Hedgehog Listen to Taylor Swift’s music. The site’s ability to accommodate different types of identities helped it earn a huge reputation with LGBTQ readers and authors.
Users who wish to submit stories must first receive an invitation. This can take from days to several months.
“This archive is a permanent, panfandom place for fanworks, built by fans for fans,” The website says:
Understandably, AO3′s fans can be pretty passionate, which explains the huge outcry on social media when it went down.
How hackers target websites
On its official Twitter page, the platform reported that it had been hit by denial of service attacks on Monday. Malicious software was used to overload a server. The site was taken offline for several days as a result.
According to AO3, no data was compromised, so users do not need to change their passwords or account details. The site may still be displaying error messages. AO3 attempts To ward off future threats.
Users of AO3 who spoke to The Washington Post said the main concern surrounded losing previously written material — which can represent years of writing for some authors. The site has a series called “Avengers: Infinite Wars,” First published in November of 2020, the novel has 103 pages and more than 1.4 millions words. Over 94,000 people have read it.
According to an article from CybersecurityConnectAnonymous group claims responsibility for the attack. They claim in a homophobic Telegram that A03 was attacked because of its “disgusting smuts.” The group demanded that the AO3 pay $30,000 as ransom in order to end the cyberattack.
But AO3′s operators said in a tweet that experts don’t believe the group — which they called “religiously and politically motivated hackers” — was actually responsible for the attack.
“View the group’s statements with skepticism,” Tweet said.
The term “AO3 is back” On Tuesday, writers praised its apparent return. The official Twitter account of the company stated that it will inform users in case there are any more downtimes.
“We expect things to slowly improve as our dedicated volunteer sysadmins continue to take measures against the attack,” The parent company of the website, OTW, issued a statement in a letter to The Post.