80 Times “The Weird Side Of Tumblr” Didn’t Disappoint

Launched fifteen years ago, Tumblr is now often viewed as one of these relics of the internet that make millennials nostalgic. Once prominent and innovative, it fell into the shadow of fellow social media giants, but it may not stay like this for long.

In fact, avid Tumblr fans have recently noticed a weird renaissance in their feeds that are getting weirdly active as if it was 2010 all over again. Astonishingly, Tumblr’s CEO Jeff D’Onofrio told The New Yorker that forty-eight per cent of its active users and sixty-one per cent of its new ones are Generation Z. To put it into perspective, this is the exact demographic that Facebook and Instagram are in fear of losing.

And while people are now (re)discovering the miscellaneous world of Tumblr, various posts shared on the platform both years ago and now get dug up into the bright light of social media. They end up on “The Weird Side Of Tumblr” Facebook page that shares the funniest, weirdest and most wholesome findings. Below we selected quite a few of the best for your entertainment, so pull your seat closer.

Tumblr was launched around the same time as Facebook (2004) and Twitter (2006), in 2007, so it was not always behind. In fact, it was built to be a simple social blogging platform, but its multimedia approach set it apart. It was about the time when users were getting their cell phones so they could take a photo and upload it straight on their Tumblr.

The appeal of Tumblr also had to do with the fact that users could design their own home pages; post text, images, gifs, or videos; and follow a feed of others doing the same. It became home to endless personalized moodboards that best reflect each user’s personality, whether by music, images or gifs.

In 2018, the world changed for Tumblr. The passing of the federal SESTA-FOSTA law to ostensibly combat sex trafficking, and issues with Apple’s App Store and its provisions against apps containing adult content, led to Tumblr enacting a ban on NSFW content across the platform. This was followed by an uproar as Tumblr was home to many established communities devoted to real-life and illustrative erotica, so they spoke out against the restrictions.

But since the ban, media coverage of Tumblr focused on the decline of the website. For example, in 2019, Business Insider reported Tumblr’s unique monthly visitors had decreased by more than 20% in the year.

Meanwhile, Allegra Rosenberg, a writer at Fansplaining, argues that reports of Tumblr’s death have been greatly exaggerated. “While Tumblr was certainly known in some circles for being a haven for NSFW content, that was certainly never all there was to it. For every user that decamped for greener, smuttier pastures when the ban was put into place, there was another user that simply shrugged their shoulders and kept on blogging,” she said.

Rosenberg argues that contrary to everyone’s expectations, “Tumblr users have stuck around en masse, making the kind of sardonic posts the platform’s long been known for, all the while feeling like survivors in a post-apocalyptic landscape. And if you know where to look, you can still spot new blogs being started by young teens, a constant injection of youthful activity into the platform.”

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