On December 4, Tumblr ruined its business by banning “adult content.” This vast revision of the popular picture-sharing site was headlined as “a better, more positive Tumblr.”
More positively ridiculous, they should have said.
Tumblr is a free site (with lots of advertising). It allows — it did allow — people from all over the world to post their cat pictures, if they wanted, or their genitalia, if they wanted. Or their obnoxious political propaganda. Or their how-to’s about septum piercing. Or their illustrated stories about female domination.
And people from all over the world have used it to create hundreds of thousands of niche communities, many of them involving sex acts or fetishes that they happen to enjoy.
Tumblr allows — it did allow — people from all over the world to post their cat pictures, if they wanted, or their genitalia, if they wanted.
Now, one great rule of life is that everything outside the relatively narrow band of sex acts, customs, words, and pictures that excites any given person will positively disgust that person. And so what? Don’t look at things you don’t like to look at.
But Tumblr has the nerve to associate its banning of “adult content” with the notion of creating “a place where more people feel comfortable expressing themselves” and with the ideal of “more constructive dialogue among our community members.” Members’ former means of “self-expression” felt very “comfortable” to more and more people, thank you; the “dialogue” was going fine. People who wanted to communicate about their cats or their sexual conundrums were doing exactly that, and many of them were developing remarkable skills of “dialogue” and individual expression. You might not like it, but it doesn’t mean it wasn’t constructive. And if it comes to that, I can think of few things more constructive than sexual pleasure.
Oh, heaven forbid that anyone should see "real-life human genitals," much less "female-presenting nipples"!
By the way, what is “adult content”? The company thinks it’s “photos, videos, or GIFs that show real-life human genitals or female-presenting nipples, and any content — including photos, videos, GIFs and illustrations — that depicts sex acts.” Oh, heaven forbid that anyone should see real-life human genitals, much less female-presenting nipples!
But heaven didn’t forbid it. Heaven gave us genitalia, and all of us have them still, except corporate executives who don’t want to be criticized for being adult. And aren’t.