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Kesha said it best.

"For me, ' Tumblr dot com' has been gradually replacing... would be a good name for a band".

Tumblr is a "short-form" multimedia blogging platform. A favored stomping ground of college-age (and younger) amateur photographers, graphic artists, fandom bloggers, social justice bloggers, and people who just felt like making one. It's far less text-rich than other blogging sites. Users tend to collate pretty images and memes from around the internet on their tumblogs, with most memes also being popular on 4chan and Reddit at the same time. They can also follow one another and reblog or like one another's posts, a system that encourages popularity contests. Themed tumblogs abound, from Fuck Yeah, Dioramas! to The Right Writing to Lesbians Who Look Like Justin Bieber. We also have a tumblr.

Differing from other mainstream social media sites, rather than personal profiles for networking, its populace is made up largely of a variety of fandoms and artists, while having been noteworthy for every variety of hatedom imaginable and acquiring a reputation among Hipster bloggers in its earlier years. It's also known for its tacit encouragement of designers. Tumblr's interface makes it easy to set up a portfolio, and its support staff has been praised for running its Theme Garden, which features often minimalist layouts designed by users.


Their fandom base is very widespread, ranging from Harry Potter to Welcome to Night Vale. Any movie or show with a large slash following have fairly large fanbases. Like most places on the internet, Shipping is also a big deal.

On May 20, 2013, Tumblr was purchased by Yahoo! for $1 billion.

In 2017, Verizon bought out Yahoo and placed ownership of Tumblr under their "The Oath" branding. On December 3rd 2018, after the Tumblr app was removed from the iOS store for allegedly allowing users to access child pornography, The Oath announced that all adult content was to be banned. The ban was enacted on December 17th 2018.


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  • Accentuate the Negative: Tumblr users seem to enjoy doing this to their favourite works of fiction; it's not uncommon either for someone to make a lengthy post deconstructing something in order to demonstrate why it's actually the most depressing, horrifying and/or darkest thing you'll ever experience, no matter how cheerful or uplifting it appears to be on the surface, or essentially hijacking someone else's post of a typically cheerful, uplifting moment to point why it's actually sad and they should feel sad. If Tumblr users are to be believed, then Dean Winchester cannot crack a harmless joke without it being a soul-destroying reflection of his myriad psychological issues, John Watson cannot even glance at Sherlock without experiencing a crippling attack of Gayngst and the Doctor can't do anything at all without it being the most depressing and heartbreaking thing ever.
  • Adorkable:
    • Most of the famous people that Tumblr users fangirl over are best described as this. Just look at Martin Freeman, Tom Hiddleston, and Benedict Cumberbatch.
    • Most of the users themselves fall into this category. The sheer number of posts about social awkwardness, shyness and the excitement they display over fandom developments is staggering.
  • All Issues Are Political Issues: You can find long tracts analyzing pretty much anything, even a character's hair length, articles of clothing worn, or the arrangement of the colors used in a particular logo, in terms of their political undertones. Particularly notable examples can be seen in the social justice sphere, where many things not normally seen as political can be used to incriminate a series on the basis of having offensive implications.
  • Angrish: The use of strings of keyboard-mashing gibberish such as "djhjrnfhbhnjh" is common to denote strong emotions, especially excitement and rage.
    • Look out for "asdfjkl". That's a popular one.
  • Animal Reaction Shot: Extremely popular here.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: The "Knight of Blogging".
    • A popular fandom-crossover is Fandomstuck which anthromorphicizes various fandoms.
    • There's even anthropomorphisizing of of tumblr itself.
  • Anti Poop-Socking:
    • You can only make 250 posts per day. This isn't a problem at all if you simply use Tumblr like a more traditional blogging platform, but if you reblog things a lot this can easily create problems.
    • You can only send 5 "ask" messages per hour.
  • Arch-Enemy: With Facebook. Alternatively, 4chan considers Tumblr this. Especially /co/ due to yaoi fangirls and rampant shippers which they feel bring in the more annoying (to them) aspects of fandom and make discussing things besides Shipping a chore if not impossible. The vitriol got even worse once The Legend of Korra premiered and Tumblr practically exploded in Korra love, fanart and shipping wars.
    • Something Awful has a distaste for the site, though it's mostly due to the nerditynote , "hugboxing"note , and social justice warriors.
    • Within Tumblr, 'Fandoms' (people who blog mainly about their favourite TV shows, movies, etc) and 'Hipsters' (people who use the site mainly for introspection, inspiring images, etc) appear to be locked in a deadly rivalry, which primarily takes the form of fandoms 'hijacking' hipster posts that they feel are excessively pretentious with fandom references, and hipsters... complaining about the fandoms doing this, mainly.
    • Even the fandoms themselves can get into wars, like the rivalry between Superwholock and Homestuck. This extends into people who hate fandoms (and nerd stuff in general) who have a particular Berserk Button for a certain fandom, never passing up the chance to shower fandom members in venom. Hetalia and Homestuck are popular targets.
    • Hardcore Vegans/Vegetarians vs meat eaters.
  • Art Imitates Art: A lot of users post iconic paintings, especially if they're Pre-Raphaelite or Neoclassical. Some of them tend to be memish remixes and post-modernist modifications. A few Tumblrs are for actual art galleries and artists who've had their stuff toured.
  • Ascended Glitch: An exploit allowed you to reblog yourself, particularly with extensions such as Missing e. Tumblr has since made self-reblogging an official feature.
  • Ascended Meme: Flower crowns. They became so popular on tumblr that at 2013 Comic Con cast and production staff, Teen Wolf and Hannibal in particular, have started wearing real ones.
  • Berserk Button:
    • For most users, "We'll Be Back Shortly", and for others, the error page.
    • Do not make rape jokes; it will only end badly!
    • It is perfectly OK to blow off some steam and post about how much you vehemently hate something, but don't tag it. The fans of that thing who track the tag will see it and you will be ripped many new ones.
    • Changes are never welcomed. Even if it's just a new button.
    • Know the difference between 'you're' and 'your'!
    • Posting artwork without crediting the original artist ("sourcing"), and by extension, "editing" artwork (ie, "tweaking" them with graphics). Especially seen as a problem in fandoms of anime and Japanese games, where ignorant (or lazy) users often upload Japanese fanart without mentioning the artist, providing a link to their site, or putting links to the wrong source.
    • Two words: POST. LIMIT.
    • The paid advertisements on Tumblr radar has, once again, inflamed the hearts of many.
    • As with all things, this has also been turned into a meme:
      (ʘ‿ʘ✿) What you say about x?
      (ʘ‿ʘ)ノ✿ Hold my flower.
      ✿\(。-_-。) Kick his ass, baby. I got yo flower.
    • Homophobia is very much hated on the site in general, which can be summed up with this quote:
      "This is tumblr. We like gays more than gays like gays".
    • There are some hate blogs for celebrities in Tumblr, and as with the case of Miranda Cosgrove, will send angry hordes of jerks down the pipe.
    • Anything involving anorexia in a bright(...ish) light(headcanons, pro-ana blogs) is absolutely not welcome.
    • Cultural reappropriation, for a lot of SJWs. This includes wearing dreadlocks or bindis by white people. While the former have been worn by peoples from India all the way to Africa (and, by extention, the Caribbeans) and bindis are now worn throughout the entire Indian subcontinent regardless of age, sex, or creed, SJWs often point out that people from the cultures dreadlocks and bindis originated in face far harsher consequences (being deemed ‘unprofessional’ or prone to racist remarks) compared to white people doing it.
  • Character Blog: The roleplaying community; to be more specific, there are ask blogs (either drawn, text, or cosplay) and rpers, which are split into independent rpers and members of a specific roleplay group. Probably older than most visitors think, but the majority of roleplayers are characters from newer series.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Land: Good lord, is it ever.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: "Night bloggers", who blog in the middle of the night while extremely tired and are responsible for the most bizarre text posts imaginable. And when we say bizarre, we mean it.
    • Also, fans who are suffering from waiting for new canon material often post very strange stuff.
      • ESPECIALLY Homestucks. This happened within about 2 days of the start of the megahiatus.
      • Don't forget the Sherlock fandom.
      • The Supernatural fandom has turned as crazy as the Sherlockians during their hiatus.
      • The Hannibal fandom was made of this from the start. Including their official blog.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Parodied. Sometimes there's posts depicting a gruesome fictional scene. People will express their dismay... at all of the minor, non-offensive things in the picture.
    • This is particularly popular with a series of violent Barbie photos. Ex: Severed limbs will be strewn around the kitchen while Barbie is holding a knife and someone will comment on the horror- that she is doing dishes in high heels instead of more comfortable shoes.
  • Cool Car: Lots of car porn.
  • Costume Porn: Cosplay blogs and fashion blogs. Lots of NSFW photographs involving costumed individuals, as well!
  • Crossover: Don't freak out if you ever see a "Welcome To My Little Legend Of Attack On Tiger And SuperHetaHanniWhoAvengerFree!OffLockPotterstuck" post on your dashboard.
  • Cute Kittens: And cats! There are many pictures of cats uploaded there.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: Given that anything goes on Tumblr, there are quite a few blogs dedicated to posting pornography, be it gay, lesbian, straight, hardcore, softcore, fandom, etc.
    • Sometimes a video is posted but sometimes, alternatively, scenes are made into sets of gifs for quick viewing pleasures.
    • Most users will post/reblog photos of celebrities they find attractive, sometimes accompanied by indelicate comments or tags about them.
    • Some users even have a sub-blog as their personal porn stash.
    • This love for erotic materials is most notable when Yahoo bought Tumblr and people were terrified of rumors that Yahoo was going to get rid of all of the porn. It even prompted the higher-ups at Yahoo to issue a statement assuring people that they weren't going to get rid of the porn.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Quite a few of users on this site.
  • Design Student's Orgasm: Averted with the themes, which are usually very minimalist, but played straight with many of the art posts.
  • Does Not Like Men: Several of the hardcore feminist/queer users, (fortunately, they are simply a Vocal Minority) but usually Pretty Boy celebrities are the exception, as a general rule.
  • Eagleland: Played for Laughs and parodied, usually with stock photo of a bald eagle juxtaposed in front of an American flag. Example:
    Blog Post: Here in [insert country], it is our Freedom Day holiday.
    Reply: In America every day is Freedom Day! *Insert Stock Photo*
  • Emo Teen: A good portion of the Tumblr demographic, these (depending exactly where you are on Tumblr) can sometimes be a minority of users. Others users often insult and quite often parody it.
  • Everybody Hates Mathematics: A large chunk of Tumblr users seem to hate mathematics, as evidenced by the percentage of posts in the "mathematics" and "math" tags consisting of posts complaining about math homework rather than posts about math itself. It's generally the exception to users complaining about seeing hate in their tracked tags.
  • False Friend: Apparently, Cole Sprouse. We were a sociology experiment. People took things a bit too far, though (ranging from immature edits of wiki pages to death threats).
  • Fangirl: A majority of female fandom bloggers on the site.
    • A bunch of fansites following the convention fuckyeah__. Common alternatives are "hellyeah", "heckyeah", or "fyeah", if the person in charge doesn't want to swear in the blog title. Then there's "feckyeahfatherted" "frackyeahbattlestargalactica" "darvityeahartemisfowl" "fokjayolandi" and "fookyeahdistrict9".
      • And, of course, "flipyeahrichardayoade"
    • Yaoi Fangirl: There is also a large yaoi fanbase on the site as well. In fact, the majority of the girls on there can and will ship any gay pairing as hard as they can, the more nonsensical the better. There's something of a running gag on the site that, on Tumblr, there is no such thing as heterosexuality.
  • The Fashionista: Due to its large number of users who are both female and enjoy artistic pasttimes, a large portion of the Tumblr community. There are also a number of male Fashionistas, and a fair few fashionable androgynes.
  • Flame War: Making rape jokes can easily get people riled up and lead to one.
  • Food Porn: Many blogs post richly-colored photos of food for seemingly no reason. Some blogs exclusively post pictures of this. People also share recipes, cooking tips and the like, as a lot of food porn posters are "foodies".
  • Foreign Culture Fetish: A lot of Tumblr users seem to be hardened Anglophiles, although their vision of Britain in many cases is based more on the fact that their favourite TV show and / or the actor on whom they have a crush originates from there rather than an understanding of the country as it actually exists.
  • Friendly War: On May 2012, Europeans liveblogged about Eurovision 2012. America declared a Banana War on the Eurovision posts by reblogging bananas.
  • Get Back in the Closet: Averted. For a time, certain tags such as "gay", "lesbian", and "bisexual" were blocked by Yahoo, being perceived as homophobic behavior. The actual reason for the restriction was that these tags are highly, highly NSFW and Yahoo choosing not to risk shutdown of the Tumblr app and exposure of pornography to minors, the Yahoo staff decided to close these tags temporarily in order to work on a better filtering system. See here.
  • A Good Name for a Rock Band: As pointed by xkcd.
  • Gorn: There's quite a few gore blogs for some reason. And by gore, we mean real life gore, not movie gore. Though there's tons of that too.
  • Goth: Many of these, perky and otherwise.
  • Hipster: As seen in the page image, a lot of the people on Tumblr are considered hipsters. This doesn't stop a majority of the users from mocking hipster trends relentlessly, often characterizing Tumblr as being divided into the hipster side and the fandom side. Which don't like each other very much, generally. The photograph and art tumblrs are generally left alone.
  • Hollywood Atheist: A number of blogs on Tumblr really, really, really dislike religion.
  • Hurricane of Puns: The people of Tumblr love puns. It is not uncommon to see a post that has a several-reblogs-long chain of puns about the original subject.
  • Hypocrite: It has been noted that there appear to be several bloggers who tend to proudly express sentiments that are generally anti-white, privileged, cis-gendered men in nature while also being big fans of actors who, more often than not, are the kind of white, privileged, cis-gendered men they should otherwise be intensely opposed to (such as Benedict Cumberbatch, Tom Hiddleston, the cast of Supernatural and the various actors who've played the Doctor in the new series of Doctor Who, all of whom have overwhelmingly large fan-bases on Tumblr).
    • Also, most teenagers on tumblr will complain about being assigned essays for school, when at the same time, they'll write a hundred pages on why Loki blinked looking at Thor.
  • Image Macro: A number of tumblogs are Image Macro factories, of the sort that recycle one image that represents the subject of the meme (generally with a pie-style background in various colours) and put different captions on it.
  • Intentionally Awkward Title: Played with in the popular snowclone fan blog title, "Fuck Yeah, [Subject]!" Some bloggers use more polite alternatives such as "Eff yeah" or "Heck yeah" to avoid this, as mentioned above.
  • Insistent Terminology: Other bloggers are commonly formally referred to as "tumblr user (their url)".
  • Large Ham: Almost everyone on the site has made a really hammy post, some more often than others.
  • Link Blog: What tumblogs often become in practice.
  • Mad Libs Catch Phrase: As noted, single topic tumblogs that catalog or reblog a single focused topic, frequetly fannish, are often titled "fuckyeah(subject)" or the more mild "fyeah(subject)", "effyeah(subject)", "hellyeah(subject)", or similar constructions.
  • Moe Anthropomorphism: Tumblr-tan, who's frequently shipped with Anonymous thanks to the late 2010 drama between the sites.
  • Mood Whiplash: Depending on the blogs you follow, your dashboard may have something horribly depressing, some porn, some Nightmare Fuel, and some silly joke posts, all within the space of ten posts. The same thing can happen while doing an Archive Binge of somebody else's Tumblr.
    • It can run into it on your blog as well, if you reblog a number of posts simultaneously whilst your queue updates. Has led to the on-site description "Tumblr: Puppies to Porn in Seconds."
      • Case in point being any CLAMP related blog where you have a fluffy love confession with sakura petals or a few cute children with angel wings on one post and a torn out eye/cut of limb/some mauling on the next. These bloggers usually complain about how they ruin their own lives with this and then post/like/reblog something sugary seconds later.
  • Moral Myopia: Certain unscrupulous Tumblr users won't hesitate to spam inboxes with abusive asks or mocking reblogs, but when people do it to them, HARASSMENT IS ILLEGAL, I'M CALLING MY LAWYER.
  • Nerdgasm: Some bloggers get very excited about their favourite shows. A trailer alone can cause massive squee attacks.
  • No Punctuation Is Funnier/all lowercase letters: expect a lot of entries to be
    • like this
    • guys minus the apostrophes 'n such, but sometimes
    • its not there and its usually to snark at someone
  • NSFW: It's best not to do searches while at work or around the family, lest you run into porn (of all shapes). Fortunately, there is an app out there to save you from the nasties or whatever you don't want to see. Except for the things that were not tagged correctly.
    • The kinds of blogs you follow can help cut down on anything you don't want to see, but it can still go from puppies to porn in two seconds.
    • There's a lot of otherwise unremarkable blogs with luridly NSFW titles like "crackofsatansass" or "dave-striders-throbbing-cock".
  • Otaku: A large portion of Tumblr could be considered as such.
  • Poe's Law: The sheer amount of relative extremism over literally anything - fandom wars, political opinions, et cetera - can make it very hard to determine who's actually being serious and who's just seeing what they can get away with.
  • Perverse Sexual Lust/Rule 34: There are LOTS of porn blogs.
  • Poke the Poodle: Daily Anarchist is a mockery of hardcore-trash-the-state-and-smash-windows-for-freedom anarchy by... drinking Pepsi from Coke mugs, switching salt and pepper dispensers, cutting outside dotted lines, and improperly heating frozen foods. Fuck you, I won't do what you tell me.
  • Political Correctness Gone Mad: Tumblr is home to left-wing, anti-oppression bloggers who are disparagingly known as "social justice warriors", and they are often accused of being this due to their practice of angrily "calling people out" for not recognizing privilege for a variety of reasons. Many of them migrated from the social justice community on LiveJournal, which had (and still does) a similar reputation.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: The pictures of cats, puppies, and other assorted animals frequently posted.
    • Tommypom, Tumblr's more or less official mascot, is a Pomeranian owned by one of the site's engineers. The staff likes to show him off in their own personal blogs, as well as using him to promote the site and notable editorial stories.
  • Running Gag: Reacting (seriously or otherwise) to something innocuous as horrendously offensive to a minority/fanbase/common morality/celebrity/fashion.
  • Satire/Parody/Pastiche: Very common to find these type of themes blogs, either in the form of pretentious hipsters, or angry social justice warrior. They sometimes come in the form of Stealth Parody as well.
  • Scenery Porn: There are quite a few Tumblrs dedicated to pretty pictures of scenery. Sometimes with a theme, such as skyscrapers, scary-looking places, or abandoned buildings. Sometimes not.
  • Self-Proclaimed Knight: The Knights of Fandom, who "protect" Tumblr users from vicious attacks by anonymous individuals.
  • Serious Business: Gifs. Losing a follower is often treated like a death scene in one's favorite movie, with .gif spams of Heroic BSODs. About the only thing that doesn't make it more serious is that Tumblr doesn't tell you who exactly unfollowed you, and that's usually easy to suss out if you're not a very popular blog.
    • As mentioned in the description, shipping is also very serious business at Tumblr.
  • Soap Box Sadie: While once widely known for its amateur photographer and Hipster blogs, this has slowly grown to become the widely-accepted stereotype of Tumblr users off the site, with many activists, with varying degrees of seriousness, becoming prominent.
    • A lot of people who primarily post other stuff — fandom stuff, art, Scenery Porn, whatever — will dabble in social justice blogging (or reblogging), in addition to the more dedicated activists.
    • There's a divide between radical feminists and the "mainstream" SJ movement (particularly on transgenderism and homosexuality). In fact, there's usually a divide on about any issue - it's not uncommon to see bloggers fight each over about how offensive something is, how extreme one should be when dealing with issues (the aforementioned divide isn't limited to radical feminists versus everyone else), or what direction social justice should take and what issues they should tackle. Also, the plural/otherkin/transabled community and animal rights community try to integrate into the "mainstream" SJ movement — but continue to remain on the fringes.
    • The character of "Social Justice Sally" is a parody of this tendency, sending up bloggers who know all the buzzwords and vitriol but lack any real understanding of the actual issues, and will hypocritically attack anything that they think is offensive, while letting other blatantly bigoted things slide because it's not their problem, or because they're bigoted themselves.
  • Stealth Parody: Many trolls pretend to be extreme SJWs. They often use as many labels as possible, often including mutually exclusive ones and absurd ones (‘plantkin’), and exaggerate points of contention to illogical extremes. They manage to fool a lot of people, mostly non-SJWs, who use them as examples to bash the SJW community.
  • Suddenly SHOUTING!: When excited, some users tend to start screAMING IN THE MIDDLE OF A SENTENCE. Will also be seen as a form of Angrish.
  • Take That!: From the example chat on the "new chat post" page, taken from an Overheard in New York post:
    Tourist: Could you give us directions to Olive Garden?
    New Yorker: No, but I could give you directions to an actual Italian restaurant.note 
  • Troll: Between random rude anonymous asks, hate blogs dedicated to hating on a fandom or celebrity, and gleefully rolling around in the counter-hate, the angry social justice warriors who will leap on you for anything (and the trolls who pretend to be one to annoy other social justice warriors), and flame wars of every caliber, it's little surprise Tumblr has its share.
  • Urban Legend: It was once trivially easy to attribute a post to the staff blog, or CNN, or any number of reputable sources that never said a word about it through some editing.
    • To figure out if it's legit or not, click the username. If links to the specific post, it's real. If it leads you to the blog's main page, someone's trying to trick you.
    • It's also fertile ground for more traditional urban legends, usually of the Lurid Tales of Doom variety such as rape gangs using lost children as bait and HIV needles in petrol pumps.
    • There was once one that went Up to Eleven with this. Somebody posted an image of them with a old toy with a button and said that the button would release a virus on tumblr, closing it. Despite the obviousness, the intended misspelling of "Tumbler", people still believed it. It got so bad, the staff removed all traces of the post, and even reported the user who made the post.
  • Wanton Cruelty to the Common Comma: Much like the books they originated from, punctuation and capitalisation are sometimes regarded as a 'pin the tail on the donkey game'. Grammar goes out the window on meme tagging as well ("i can't", "so many feels", "your show could never", "what a good", "how do you [noun]", etc).
  • We All Live in America: More often than not Played for Laughs.
    • Averted during the Eurovision Song Contest, when you'll be flooded with Europeans mocking the U.S. for not joining the fun.
    • Also a frequent accusation towards certain social justice warriors who tend to apply the cultural and racial mores of America to the entire website regardless of whether the person they're condemning or not is even American. Eurocentrism, especially, is considered a problem by activists.
  • What You Are in the Dark: Users can be this, specifically the ones who run very classy unassuming SFW blogs. The thing is when you like something NSFW it won't appear on your blog (as opposed to re-blogging). HOWEVER the person who blogged that thing you just liked can actually see what you just liked. It can be kinda jarring seeing a born-again Christian female like that gorn post, or that DP/facial/lesbian/gangbang/bukakke gif set, sleazy story or whatever you just posted.
  • You Are Not Alone: Many promote this as their advantage over Facebook.
    • And they're right. Despite all the flak Tumblr takes for the "social justice warriors," if someone seems even vaguely suicidal, their inbox will get spammed with positive messages like some sort of emotional SWAT team was alerted.
    • Often, a follower of that person's blog will post on their own, asking others to send that person messages to help them feel better.
  • You Keep Using That Word: You can find any word on Tumblr and see it used in any context, even in contexts not appropriate for it's meaning or phrase, so don't be surprised if you end up thinking this, a lot.

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