Hey, Tumblr, are we not allowed to post photos from URLs anymore? Do we have to physically upload a saved file?
Hey, Tumblr, how do I remove album art from an audio file? Are we not allowed to do that anymore?
In an effort to make its Dashboard a “smaller and more streamlined experience,” the social blogging platform Tumblr is today overhauling the way users create posts on its website. Instead of the larger, full-screen experience which makes writing or sharing content on Tumblr feel more like blogging, the new post screens seem to be taking a page from Twitter in their design.
Throughout the years, Tumblr has positioned itself as a more lightweight form of blogging, which makes the concept more accessible to people. Using Tumblr is not as complicated as setting up a WordPress site, for example, and it’s significantly less difficult than establishing your own domain and hosting it yourself. (Which, yes, kids, people actually had to do back in the olden days of the web).
Today, despite its “blogging” roots, Tumblr’s community reflects media and links, more so than words, however. If anything, Tumblr is the go-to place for sharing amazing photos, memes, and it has even helped propel our newfound love of gifs back into the mainstream consciousness.
These changes, though seemingly minor, better reflect the platform Tumblr has become and is becoming – a site that’s more social network than it is blogging platform. A site that caters to the younger, social sharing crowd, rather than those who grew up with blogging screens that themselves felt like stripped down versions of Word. Instead, these new posting screens are for those who grew up on Google Docs, Twitter and Facebook.
Tumblr made it more difficult to write and edit posts (and many other things) after it scrapped actual pages in favor of this Twitter-style pop-up box. Tumblr is now using a narrow, vertical text entry box, which forces me to scroll much more than before in order to edit and proofread my post. These changes are not minor. Simply writing this post took much longer than it would have yesterday.
This is bad design. Design should be function first, form second. Through this move, Tumblr prioritized form— and it’s not even good form to begin with because it does not make sense within the context of the platform.
Twitter is designed to be instant and limited. It thrives on mobile devices. It makes sense for Twitter to use this kind of pop-up box. The only way this makes sense for Tumblr is if it wants its platform to shift entirely to photos and instant reactions, which does not seem sustainable in the long-run, or to become mobile-first, which would significantly simplify the quality and kinds of posts you would see. We already have a thing for that— Twitter.
Further, Google Docs and Facebook don’t reduce the real estate in which you can type and maneuver. Twitter may offer less space, but it is better-designed and is a function of the character limit (design reflecting purpose!), not some designer’s wish to imitate Twitter.
Tumblr became a social networking platform through its old approach to blogging. Tumblr was spacious, well-designed, and easy to use. If I wanted to use Twitter, I would use Twitter. If I wanted to use Facebook, I would use Facebook. I used Tumblr because it was Tumblr.
Why was this necessary?
I don’t know if I like Tumblr’s new posting/reblog interface.
I miss working on distinct pages, especially when editing multiple posts at once. This new interface won’t allow me to reblog/edit in a new tab. Try it. Also, immediately after saving a post as a draft, I am redirected to some pseudo-Dashboard page. There are bugs in the code.
Why was this change necessary?
I wish I could disable infinite scroll on Tumblr’s mobile app. I have a feeling I wouldn’t get so many “broken” images on the Dashboard if I could view the Dashboard on separate pages. And maybe the app wouldn’t crash as often, either.
Did Tumblr edit its coding for multiple-word tags last night? Spaces between words in tags are now replaced with hyphens, so you have to manually remove hyphens from a URL to actually view a particular multiple-word tag…
That extra step makes multiple-word tags effectively useless.
EDIT, 5 DEC: I think they fixed it.
I don’t know when this happened, but thank you
In the past, Tumblr only allowed access to ~200 most-recent posts under a tag on a blog. In order to get around this, I resorted to making new tags: arch2, arch3, cath2, crush2, etc.
There were still some tags that I never expanded (pattern, dress, ph, design, colour, others). I clicked pattern on a whim today and learned ALL THE POSTS (not just x-recent) ARE ACCESSIBLE NOW. 43 PAGES OF PATTERN. 334 PAGES OF DRESS. 458 PAGES OF PH. 64 PAGES OF DESIGN. 244 PAGES OF COLOUR. THANK YOU.
You prevented links from being sent in Tumblr messages
to prevent spam links in spam messages
but now we’re getting creative spam that just replaces the . with [dot] in links
can we just send links in messages again?
I don’t know much about the business side of this, but is a (less-efficient) Dashboard in which millions of users must now access additional pages to do the same things more expensive to the company? Servers/ traffic/ bandwidth/ whatever appropriate terms?
…or are these new hurdles a traffic-generating ploy?