AO3 Lyric Vid
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AO3 Lyric Vids, also known as "AO3 sings," are videos made by using screenshots of works on AO3 with song lyric titles. The phenomenon is predated by a text post on Tumblr by sofiabanefics in which she posted a series of screenshots that, when read in order, made up the lyrics of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah." This resulted in "it's a cold and it's a broken ao3 fic" being posted to YouTube by beth eleanor about a week later. Both a way to showcase the wide variety of works posted to AO3 and a way to poke fun at the fact that certain songs and their lyrics are overused in fandom, the videos have become especially popular in 2021.
An AO3 lyric vid is, at its core, a simple video featuring screenshots of works on AO3 with song lyrics from a specific song as visuals. While the concept is simple, there's a lot of room for witty eye puns and creative juxtaposing. For instrumental bridges, the vidder will select a story title that matches the mood of the instrument such as "A Wild Saxophone Has Appeared," Shameless Sax" or "Soft Playing Of A Piano". The opening single piano note for "Welcome to the Black Parade" is paired with A G-Note Without Warning in birbiebi's "i found ao3 fic titles for every lyric of welcome to the black parade by my chemical romance" video.
In hartknyx's "i found ao3 fic titles for every lyric of tequila by the champs," because the song is primarily an instrumental the vidder chose to pick AO3 works with titles such as "A Wild Saxophone Has Appeared" and "Bass Line." At one point, the instrumental bridge is long and repetitive so the vidder selected: "And the Band Keeps Playing On." If the music has additional audio snippets (ex: the sound of running feet in the theme song of Scooby Doo), the vidder may place two fic titles on the screen simultaneously, one for the lyrics being sung and one for the sound effect.
The use of song lyrics as fanfiction titles is a long-standing fandom tradition dating back to the print fanzine era. Searchable, online archives now makes it easier to locate these stories, especially for fanfic archives like AO3 with robust tagging and filtering. It was inevitable that fans would be inspired to recreate song lyrics using screenshots of AO3 story titles and string them together on graphic and image friendly platforms like Tumblr. This in turn inspired others to set these title screencaps to the actual song and upload the video.
The vid Some nights I stay up (reading Ao3 fic) brings the joke full circle: the AO3 fic titles become the lyrics for the song, and the vid title refers back to the habit of staying up all night to read fic on AO3.
- Bohemian Rhapsody vid by gummy horses
- Take Me To Church, Archived version vid by nauti-ca
- Some nights I stay up (reading Ao3 fic) vid by voyna-i-miracles
- A thousand years, Archived version by vid msmegalodon
- nu'est lyrics vid by nuestness
- welcome to the black parade vid by birbiebi
- What's New Scooby Doo vid by TLoonatic
- About Love, Archived version vid by seokpunpet
- Drunk Daze, Archived version vid by Bl0bfishSpand3x
- Butter, Archived version vid by artemiskv
- bang the doldrums by fall out boy vid by plutwyodd
- Toxic, Archived version vid by seraphsvt
- Original opening of Star Trek vid by bitriptucker
- Faith of the heart by vid by cpthoshi
- Tequila vid by hartknyx
- Hurt, Archived version vid by nomadIands
- The Chain vid by Nandermo Nation
- The Archive of Our Own lyric trend brings a Tumblr meme to Twitter by Morgan Sung, mashable.com
- Text Post by sofiabanefics. Post 10 Sept 2019. Accessed 20 Sept 2021.
- it's a cold and it's a broken ao3 fic. Posted 16 Sept 2021. Accessed 20 Sept 2021.
- i found ao3 fic titles for every lyric of welcome to the black parade by my chemical romance by birbiebi. Posted 3 Jun 2021. Accessed 20 Sept 2021.
- i found ao3 fic titles for every lyric of tequila by the champs by hartknyx. Posted 5 Jun 2021. Accessed 20 Sept 2021.