Tumblr Porn Ban Memes

Ana Valens

Tumblr’s porn ban is here—and Twitter’s mourning it with memes

RIP old Tumblr.


Ana Valens

Internet Culture

Posted on Dec 17, 2018   Updated on May 20, 2021, 11:15 pm CDT

The Dark Age has begun for Tumblr. Starting today, Dec. 17, adult content is no longer allowed on the site. That’s right: no titty, no bepis, and certainly no female-presenting nipples.

In a post today, Tumblr announced that it will “start hiding—not deleting—posts that contain GIFs, videos, and photos from public view that are in violation of our policy.” The site says it will “flag more adult content” over the “coming weeks,” and there is an appeal process for flagged posts.

A quick visit to Tumblr reveals that NSFW search terms and phrases are largely blocked on the site. For instance, searching “BDSM,” “femdom,” “domme,” and “girldick” provide no NSFW results. Certain kink and fetish tags, however, made it past the ban. Posts related to or tagged with “feederism” and “giantess” still made it through, but there are no posts available for “ahegao,” “DDLG,” and “inflation” fetishes, among others.

Daily Dot writer Gavia Baker-Whitelaw considered the ban “very effective” in censoring adult content.

“I just tested some NSFW Tumblr tags (all blocked, as of today) but ironically found my first example of the infamous Female Presenting Nipple on a Nazi tag (not blocked),” Baker-Whitelaw tweeted.

Adult content was a significant part of Tumblr’s appeal. A January 2017 study revealed that approximately 30 million Tumblr users out of 130 million surveyed were “consuming adult content” by either “re-sharing it or following the accounts of those producers,” Motherboard reports. Another 40 million users, or 28 percent, accidentally saw porn on Tumblr through their dashboard, meaning there were relatively few degrees of separation between NSFW and SFW users. Meanwhile, women aged 20 to 25 were looking at porn at a higher rate than young men, suggesting the crackdown is impacting women more than any other group.

All of that is to say that adult content played a major role in Tumblr’s content ecosystem, whether users came to the site for porn or not. Twitter is responding to the ban in an incredibly expected way: creating memes mourning Tumblr’s “death.”

“Today is the Day Tumblr officially dies ladies and gents,” Twitter user RiseFallNick tweeted along with a Beavis and Butt-Head meme.




Then there’s the Log Off Protest, a 24-hour boycott in which Tumblr users leave the site to protest the NSFW ban. Alongside posting their frustrations in the hashtags #tumblrlogoff and #logoffprotest, Tumblr users are sharing plenty of memes on Twitter criticizing the adult content ban.



Others pointed out that, like Baker-Whitelaw tweeted, porn is gone but fascism is alive and well on the site.


Whether you loved or hated Tumblr, a major part of the internet died today. RIP, porn-friendly Tumblr. You’ll be missed.

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*First Published: Dec 17, 2018, 11:58 am CST