Platform Update: Tumblr Bans Porn — What This Means for Its Future

TL;DR: Tumblr will ban all adult content next month in response to the discovery of child pornography on appearing on its site. Though porn is a driver of traffic for the platform, Tumblr seems to have transformed just in time to stay afloat.

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Tumblr announced that it will ban all adult content by Dec. 17 to ultimately remove porn-related communities on the platform. The move is in response after the company confirmed it was removed for the Apple iOS App Store due to child pornography appearing on the platform.

Since its founding in 2007, the micro blogging site has been OK with porn within its community guidelines, and likely contributed to some of its meager popularity when users started spending more time on rising social media sites. Five years ago, it was among the top 10 websites in the U.S., with 20 billion monthly page views; adult websites were its leading category of incoming referral traffic.

Founder David Karp has said that the platform took a hard line on freedom of speech to support creation — whatever that means to the community. This has remained following the Yahoo! acquisition in 2013 and the departure of Karp in 2017.

We’ll be watching how long-time users respond to changes and if the platform will find new footing without adult content. Follow our platform updates for the latest.

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