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2017-11-22 12:38:05 -0500

In these releases, we implemented several anti-spam measures, fixed some problems with our invitation queue, and added clarifying text to the site when the invitation queue is temporarily suspended.


  • Coders: Ariana, Elz, Naomi, redsummernight, Sarken, Tal Hayon
  • Code reviewers: Ariana, james_, Sarken, redsummernight, tickinginstant
  • Testers: james_, Elz, Lady Oscar, mumble, Sammie



  • [AO3-4222] - When the invitation request queue was suspended it left no clear indication anywhere on the site of how the Archive invitation system works or that it was currently shut off. We have now added explanatory text to the appropriate places and separated the form to add yourself to the queue from the form that lets you check your place in the queue.
  • [AO3-5235] - It was previously possible to add yourself to the invitation request queue by circumventing the user interface. We've now closed that tricksy loophole.
  • [AO3-5205] - We have put in checks to prevent adding variations of the same email address (e.g. the same name with periods in different places) to the invitation request queue.
  • [AO3-5243] - Deleting email addresses from the queue was a slow and annoying process, which we have now made less annoying and less slow for our Abuse personnel.
  • [AO3-5249] - Admins can now search the email addresses in the queue.
  • [AO3-4971] - If an admin tried to delete the same invitation request twice (e.g. with the help of browser tab shenanigans), they would get an unhelpful error 404. It now displays a more helpful message.


  • [AO3-4331] - We have added improvements to our anti-spam tool, making it possible to train the algorithm and spot more spam works as they're posted (and leave non-spam works alone).
  • [AO3-4200] - We now add the rel="nofollow" attribute to all links inside works and comments to discourage spammers from using the Archive to improve their search result standings.
  • [AO3-5234] - Site admins can now toggle an option that will automatically hide works that our spam detector has classified as spam. Hidden spam works can then be reviewed and, if not spam, be unhidden. \o/
  • [AO3-5251] - If a work gets hidden as spam, the creator will receive a notification in which we assure them that we review our software's decisions and will unhide the work if it turns out to be not actually spam. (If it is, it will be summarily deleted and GOOD RIDDANCE.)
  • [AO3-5247] - Two kinds of notifications that were theoretically supposed to be triggered by declined invitation requests/spam works were not actually being sent (and instead cluttered up our error logs). They will now be sent in the appropriate cases.

Automated Tests

  • [AO3-5240] - Completely unrelated to any spam concerns, one of our automated tests broke when daylight savings ended in the US, and we had to reapply a fix that had previously taken care of the problem. Excitement!
  • [AO3-3848] - We've added a test to check that accounts block access after repeated password failures.
  • [AO3-4855] - Our test coverage for gift exchanges has been improved by some rspec additions!

Known Issues

See our Known Issues page for current issues.