Posted in full at: http://ift.tt/1XUzoB0 at December 08, 2015 at 07:32PM
To to anon who contacted me about orphaning work at AO3: I am not AO3 Abuse nor do I know much about AO3’s orphaning policies. I only know what I read online and what I’ve had seen in fandom over the years.
Those huge honking caveats aside…..
AO3 is pretty clear that you - and only you - can orphan your work. No one can write into AO3 and demand that your name be removed. And as long as you claim your work, only you can delete the work from AO3′s servers (assuming the work does not violate AO3 terms and conditions/policies).
Once you orphan your work - and here AO3 is also very clear - you permanently lose control over that copy on the archive. This means you cannot come back later and remove the copy stored on the AO3 archive yourself (but note my suggestions below about working with AO3 Abuse). AO3 does this protect themselves from later claims by other people that they own the work and that the work should be transferred to them or taken down. The copy of the orphaned story is permanently under the “custody and care” of AO3. Just like an orphaned child left on the doorstep.
But you still “own” your work elsewhere. If it is on another archive, you could either continue claiming it or delete it (depending on the archives policies). Youy can post it to your tumblr, or blog or website - or not. You could even submit it for publication. This post explains more - basically you will always retain the copyright to your own work. But when you orphan your work on AO3, you are essentially handing over control over that one hard copy.
If you are still worried about someone linking your name down the road to an orphaned work, then delete the work - do not orphan it (but again, see my thoughts below - deleting a story on AO3 is just the first step). If you have already orphaned it, make certain it is “locked’ so that only AO3 users can read it. It won’t stop the story from being listed on AO3, but it does limit the number of looky-loos.
And finally, if you have already orphaned your work, you may get further with AO3 Abuse if you send them the online evidence that would show how someone could link your real identity to the now orphaned story. In the example you gave you wanted to know what an author could do if they wrote an anon kink meme story that they then later posted to AO3 and claimed it as their own, only to then orphan the kink meme story, only to then later decide to delete the orphaned story. In order to "out” you, someone would have to follow the same jumbled path. They would need to offer up evidence that you are that writer. This proof will most likely also exist outside AO3 (blogs, journals, tumblrs, websites, rec lists) so it should be relatively easy to show AO3 Abuse the path that would lead to your door. Once that is done, you will need to start focusing on erasing any other links to you outside of AO3. In other words, AO3 is only the first stop if someone is trying to link your RL and fandom life. There have been several excellent posts over the years if you find your RL identity being linked to a fanwork (see below)
And a final note: kink meme stories are anonymous for many reasons - one reason is to allow people to explore tricky concepts/tropes without the fear of consequences. If you write a kink meme story, consider not posting it to AO3 under your fan pseud.
How to lower your profile online:
Tags:fandom meta, security through obscurity, ao3, ao3 abuse knows a lot more about this than I do, so please check with them, asking random strangers for advice on the Internets, DWCrosspost