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Rebecca Sentance is an Organization for Transformative Works volunteer. She is the chair for Fanlore, a staffer for AO3 Documentation, and a layout editor for Transformative Works and Cultures, as well as a member of the Board of Directors. She has volunteered with the OTW since 2015.
History: Involvement with the OTW
I first became involved with the OTW as a volunteer in 2015, but I’d wanted to volunteer for years before that. A combination of being a full-time student and always just missing the window for recruitment kept me from doing it until the summer after I’d finished my Masters degree. I’d finally decided to get serious about volunteering, and had set up an alert on the OTW Volunteering page to monitor it for any changes. The first committee that opened recruitment after I did that was the AO3 Documentation Committee (Docs for short). I applied, and the rest is history!
Being one of the people responsible for drafting and editing AO3’s help documentation (FAQs and tutorials) has given me an exciting front-row seat to some of our big coding changes over the years. My proudest moment so far as an OTW volunteer – apart from when AO3 won a Hugo Award! – is having been involved in testing the massive upgrade to AO3’s searching and filtering that was released last year, and getting my name in the release notes. I am also fond of the Unofficial Browser Tools FAQ, which I had to beta for my first task as a Docs committee member. It gave me the opportunity to download and play with a lot of fun userscripts and tools.When I created my AO3 account in 2011, I was mainly attracted by the tags, and the way that users could create new fandoms and relationships just by tagging them. I was proud to publish one of the first fics in the Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides fandom! Nowadays, I write a lot of fic for a small podcast fandom, and there’s still no greater joy than creating a tag that’s never been used before.
Board of Directors Profile
Rebecca Sentance has been in fandom for around fifteen years, starting on Quizilla where she would read second-person fanfics in fandoms like Yu-Gi-Oh!, Inuyasha, Yu Yu Hakusho and Dragonball Z. However, her first ever fanwork was an Enid Blyton fanfiction that she wrote at the age of five – long before she ever dreamed there might be whole communities of people publishing and reading these works online. She discovered AO3 in 2011 and slowly began to learn about the organisation behind it and its many other projects, which led to her delving into fandom history and fan academia, and learning about the vital importance of preserving and defending fanworks of all kinds. While she was eager to be a part of the OTW, she didn’t manage to catch an open recruitment round until mid-2015, shortly after finishing her postgrad studies, when she saw a posting for AO3 Documentation staff – the perfect fit for someone who loves all things to do with words. She later found her way onto the Transformative Works and Cultures and Fanlore committees, and now devotes a significant portion of her time to being part of this amazing community of fans. When not volunteering with the OTW, she can be found lurking in various parts of Marvel fandom and procrastinating on her latest fic.