What thoughts come to mind when you hear the word Tumblr?
For some it may be discovering a fandom for the first time. I’ve lost count of how many A.R.M.Y and Trekkie friends I made in those days.
For some it may be reading pages and pages of fan-fiction about how Bella should’ve ended up with Jacob instead of Edward.
Or for some, my favorite, Buzzfeedish content based on things like, “Which historical figure was a major ‘Daddy’ in their day?”
Launched in 2007, Tumblr completely changed pop culture as we know it.
From the discovery of new styles, tech, politics, art, slang, and even sexuality, Tumblr was a major force in underground creativity. However, in the last few years, the internet giant has lost its steam. Its ban on NSFW content in 2018 saw a “21.2% decline in unique monthly visitors.”
Although Tumblr is a shadow of its former self, the internet doesn’t like to forget. And much like the discourse Tumblr created, it also doesn’t like to let go.
Here are the ways in which tech is allowing Tumblr to make a comeback.
Tumblr has started letting bloggers make money via tip jars. Much as WordPress was in its early days, Tumblr is still associated with the quintessential blogger. Competing with the likes of Patreon, Tumblr is in the race to make money for its creators – and that’s always nice, right?
Tumblr’s refusal to institute an algorithm – and imitate social media networks like Instagram and Tik Tok – has resulted in a surprising boost in users. These users, who aren’t impressed by following the crowd, are using Tumblr as the answer to their underground prayers (again). Call them the anti-influencers.
Automattic’s Matías Ventura talks about the integration of Gutenberg into Tumblr and the learning curve for new WordPress Developers. Could Tumblr’s adoption of the Gutenberg editor push developers back to its site?
What are your thoughts? Will the newest tech integrations breathe life back into Tumblr?
If so, what fan-fiction should I start on first?