Missing E

Missing e unlikely to return to Tumblr

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Missing e, a popular browser add-on for Tumblr, will not return for new downloads, which has prompted outrage from its fans and Tumblr power users.

Jeremy Cutler, the extension’s developer, posted a note today on Missing e’s blog writing that its return is “unlikely” because many of Tumblr’s demands would strip the basic functions of Missing e.

The extension gained a fan base for features Tumblr lacked, such as a “mass editor” tool and the ability to find out if a user you follow is following you in return. Tumblr’s simplistic dashboard and tools did not have the features Missing e provided.

Tumblr has not returned our email requesting comment. However, Tumblr did respond to one user, saying that all developers must follow its user agreement.

The extension came under fire from Tumblr on Wednesday for violating the site’s terms for developers. The New York-based company banned new downloads of the extension because it overreached limits set on how often third-party add-ons to Tumblr can access the site's data, as well as what it can do with it..

Cutler wrote that Tumblr will permit Missing e to continue if it alters some of its features. Missing e, for example, can no longer modify a user’s dashboard as it currently does with its “edit” and “reblog” buttons.

“I imagine that the purpose of this requirement is so that Tumblr, and Tumblr alone, will decide how you view your Tumblr dashboard, the desires of power users and Tumblrs who want a smoother experience be damned,” Cutler wrote.

To regain access to Tumblr, Cutler writes Missing e would need to be less invasive and not modify the dashboard. “Complying with these demands would mean gutting nearly every feature in Missing e,” Cutler wrote.

Cutler could rejigger Missing e’s functionality by accessing Tumblr content directly, rather than through the programmatic tools the site offers for doing so, but he said that is “unlikely.” He fears additional retribution from Tumblr, like having his personal account banned from the microblogging platform. In his blog post, Cutler said he values the friends he has made though his blog and does not want to disappear from it.

The post received more than 1,700 notes from other Tumblr users, with many of them showing support for Cutler. Influential power users, like Dry the Rain, wrote that Missing e has made Tumblr easier to use and suggested “It would make so much more sense for them to integrate those improvements into their own system.”

Another user named Kyubino said he recognizes Missing e’s icons for reblog immediately more than he does words. “We need a petition to...do...something?,” he pleads.

There is a growing sentiment among the commenters that Tumblr’s is reaching for the banhammer too quickly and that the extension provides more of a public service than a hindrance.