WordPress owner Automattic to purchase Tumblr from Verizon

Posted:
in General Discussion edited August 12
Automattic, parent company of popular online publishing platform WordPress, has agreed to purchase microblogging service Tumblr from current owner Verizon for an undisclosed sum, it was reported on Monday.

Tumblr


Automattic is buying Tumblr for a "nominal amount" and will retain some 200 employees as part of the deal, according to The Wall Street Journal. The blogging service has changed hands three times in six years.

While terms of the sale were not disclosed, Automattic is likely paying significantly less than the $1.1 billion Yahoo shelled out for control of the site in 2013. At the time, the one-time internet search leader promised to "not screw it up," referencing its prior handling of photo sharing site Flickr.

Verizon took control of Tumblr as part of a $4.48 billion package deal for Yahoo's core assets in 2017. The move was designed to forward the mobile carrier's digital advertising and media efforts.

Verizon began the search for a buyer earlier this year, according to the report, which cited a source familiar with the matter as saying Tumblr's final sale price is not "material" to the wireless carrier.

A follow-up report from Axios puts the number at "well below" $20 million.

Tumblr enjoyed early success as a major player in the social media landscape, but has since been eclipsed by more popular platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Though it currently hosts more than 450 million blogs, the service is unable to turn a significant profit, Axios notes.

Last year, Tumblr enacted a blanket ban on adult content following criticism over lax policing of illicit images, a shift in part prompted by Apple's decision to remove the service's app from the iOS App Store due to failed child pornography filters. Users groused about the change in policy and took to other social media platforms to mock the company's singling out of "female-presenting nipples" as a prohibition target.

The App Store takedown and ensuing adult content ban led to a marked decrease in user engagement.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 14
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    fastasleepwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 14
    irelandireland Posts: 17,659member
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    edited August 12 williamlondonrepressthis
  • Reply 3 of 14
    ireland said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    Not so hard to believe. Tumblr (as far as I can tell) was a haven for “alternative lifestyles”... nudists, swingers, body mods, etc.  plus the garden variety porn and everyone else.

    When Tumblr banned nudity (blame Apple) they killed off their core audience.  They could have backtracked, there wasn’t a need for an App in the first place, but under Verizon that wasn’t going to happen.  Financially Tumblr was a boat anchor...

    Tumblr is guaranteed to be converted to WordPress and have a lot less overhead going forward.  We’ll see if they can make it profitable...

    I’d expect a return of porn from this comment:
    Matt Mullenweg commented: "WordPress.com supports free speech and doesn't shut people down for 'uncomfortable thoughts and ideas', in fact we're blocked in several countries because of that."[21]

    But,
    WordPress.org on Apple iOS. ... There is only one official WordPress app for iOS, and it works with both .org and .com sites. To access your self-hosted (.org) site within the WordPress app, click on the link to “Add Self-Hosted Site”. Then, enter your username, password, and URL associated with that blog.

    So, an App is possible.  Maybe having it walled behind a username and password would be “good enough” but I doubt it with Apple... maybe Google.

    williamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 14
    "Not so hard to believe. Tumblr (as far as I can tell) was a haven for “alternative lifestyles”... nudists, swingers, body mods, etc.  plus the garden variety porn and everyone else."
    Not to mention those challenged by spelling!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 14
    SoliSoli Posts: 9,197member
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    It's the unimaginable type of porn that scares me.
    edited August 12 watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 14
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,298member
    ireland said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    Oh it’s true. I have the app and there are a million porn blogs still there. Maybe they removed keyword search results, but the content abounds. 
    edited August 13 watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 14
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,298member

    ireland said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    Not so hard to believe. Tumblr (as far as I can tell) was a haven for “alternative lifestyles”... nudists, swingers, body mods, etc.  plus the garden variety porn and everyone else.

    When Tumblr banned nudity (blame Apple)
    they killed off their core audience.  They could have backtracked, there wasn’t a need for an App in the first place, but under Verizon that wasn’t going to happen. 
    It doesn’t make sense to blame Apple at all, they didn’t force the nudity ban. Safari and Twitter and Reddit and kik and plenty of apps serve porn. Verizon banned it because they had minors being published, a violation of App Store rules that would ban the app if not corrected. Rather than detect and prevent minors, they decided to ban all nudity completely. That was their choice. Other apps, such as Reddit, moderate and continue to have nudity and porn. Blaming Apple is incorrect. 

    Also, the tumblr app is arguably better than a website alone. Apps don’t have to download HTML, CSS, and non-compiled Javascript over and over, that's what makes them better. HTML was envisioned as a document markup language, not an application presentation layer. Thus its bulkier and slower than a nice compiled app.
    edited August 13 repressthiswatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 14
    irelandireland Posts: 17,659member
    ireland said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    Not so hard to believe. Tumblr (as far as I can tell) was a haven for “alternative lifestyles”... nudists, swingers, body mods, etc.  plus the garden variety porn and everyone else.

    When Tumblr banned nudity (blame Apple) they killed off their core audience.  They could have backtracked, there wasn’t a need for an App in the first place, but under Verizon that wasn’t going to happen.  Financially Tumblr was a boat anchor...

    Tumblr is guaranteed to be converted to WordPress and have a lot less overhead going forward.  We’ll see if they can make it profitable...

    I’d expect a return of porn from this comment:
    Matt Mullenweg commented: "WordPress.com supports free speech and doesn't shut people down for 'uncomfortable thoughts and ideas', in fact we're blocked in several countries because of that."[21]

    But,
    WordPress.org on Apple iOS. ... There is only one official WordPress app for iOS, and it works with both .org and .com sites. To access your self-hosted (.org) site within the WordPress app, click on the link to “Add Self-Hosted Site”. Then, enter your username, password, and URL associated with that blog.

    So, an App is possible.  Maybe having it walled behind a username and password would be “good enough” but I doubt it with Apple... maybe Google.

    He also apparently said in another tweet that he’s upholding the porn block. That they have a ban of female nipples is sad. Why are Americans so afraid of the human body?
    edited August 13 repressthisbaconstangwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 14
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,298member
    ireland said:
    ireland said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    Not so hard to believe. Tumblr (as far as I can tell) was a haven for “alternative lifestyles”... nudists, swingers, body mods, etc.  plus the garden variety porn and everyone else.

    When Tumblr banned nudity (blame Apple) they killed off their core audience.  They could have backtracked, there wasn’t a need for an App in the first place, but under Verizon that wasn’t going to happen.  Financially Tumblr was a boat anchor...

    Tumblr is guaranteed to be converted to WordPress and have a lot less overhead going forward.  We’ll see if they can make it profitable...

    I’d expect a return of porn from this comment:
    Matt Mullenweg commented: "WordPress.com supports free speech and doesn't shut people down for 'uncomfortable thoughts and ideas', in fact we're blocked in several countries because of that."[21]

    But,
    WordPress.org on Apple iOS. ... There is only one official WordPress app for iOS, and it works with both .org and .com sites. To access your self-hosted (.org) site within the WordPress app, click on the link to “Add Self-Hosted Site”. Then, enter your username, password, and URL associated with that blog.

    So, an App is possible.  Maybe having it walled behind a username and password would be “good enough” but I doubt it with Apple... maybe Google.

    He also apparently said in another tweet that he’s upholding the porn block. That they have a ban of female nipples is sad. Why are Americans so afraid of the human body?
    Blame those pesky religious quakers and puritans that got booted out of Europe. Still here, ugh.
    repressthisJWSCwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 14
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Thanks for doing the research for us. 
    repressthis
  • Reply 11 of 14
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,298member
    spice-boy said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Thanks for doing the research for us. 
    Anything in the name of truth. 
    repressthiswatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 14
    AppleExposedAppleExposed Posts: 1,398unconfirmed, member
    How many hands has this hot potato ran through? I thought Yahoo still owned them.


    ireland said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    Not so hard to believe. Tumblr (as far as I can tell) was a haven for “alternative lifestyles”... nudists, swingers, body mods, etc.  plus the garden variety porn and everyone else.

    When Tumblr banned nudity (blame Apple)
    they killed off their core audience.  They could have backtracked, there wasn’t a need for an App in the first place, but under Verizon that wasn’t going to happen. 
    It doesn’t make sense to blame Apple at all, they didn’t force the nudity ban. Safari and Twitter and Reddit and kik and plenty of apps serve porn. Verizon banned it because they had minors being published, a violation of App Store rules that would ban the app if not corrected. Rather than detect and prevent minors, they decided to ban all nudity completely. That was their choice. Other apps, such as Reddit, moderate and continue to have nudity and porn. Blaming Apple is incorrect. 

    Also, the tumblr app is arguably better than a website alone. Apps don’t have to download HTML, CSS, and non-compiled Javascript over and over, that's what makes them better. HTML was envisioned as a document markup language, not an application presentation layer. Thus its bulkier and slower than a nice compiled app.

    I thought porn was banned on Apple services?
  • Reply 13 of 14
    crowleycrowley Posts: 5,997member
    How many hands has this hot potato ran through? I thought Yahoo still owned them.


    ireland said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    Not so hard to believe. Tumblr (as far as I can tell) was a haven for “alternative lifestyles”... nudists, swingers, body mods, etc.  plus the garden variety porn and everyone else.

    When Tumblr banned nudity (blame Apple)
    they killed off their core audience.  They could have backtracked, there wasn’t a need for an App in the first place, but under Verizon that wasn’t going to happen. 
    It doesn’t make sense to blame Apple at all, they didn’t force the nudity ban. Safari and Twitter and Reddit and kik and plenty of apps serve porn. Verizon banned it because they had minors being published, a violation of App Store rules that would ban the app if not corrected. Rather than detect and prevent minors, they decided to ban all nudity completely. That was their choice. Other apps, such as Reddit, moderate and continue to have nudity and porn. Blaming Apple is incorrect. 

    Also, the tumblr app is arguably better than a website alone. Apps don’t have to download HTML, CSS, and non-compiled Javascript over and over, that's what makes them better. HTML was envisioned as a document markup language, not an application presentation layer. Thus its bulkier and slower than a nice compiled app.

    I thought porn was banned on Apple services?
    The internet is not an Apple service though.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 14
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,298member
    How many hands has this hot potato ran through? I thought Yahoo still owned them.


    ireland said:
    Odd thing about that porn ban -- Tumblr is still chock full of every imaginable type of porn you can think of (web & app) . It's literally as if nothing has changed.
    Not true. I’ve looked, lol. How you supposed to find porn when every porn keyword is blocked.

    Crazy, 6 years ago (hard to believe it’s been six years) purchased for $1.1B and now worth less than $20. Looks like he sold on the crest of a wave.

    And then there’s this: https://www.vulture.com/2019/08/verizon-to-sell-tumblr-to-wordpress-owner-automattic.html
    Not so hard to believe. Tumblr (as far as I can tell) was a haven for “alternative lifestyles”... nudists, swingers, body mods, etc.  plus the garden variety porn and everyone else.

    When Tumblr banned nudity (blame Apple)
    they killed off their core audience.  They could have backtracked, there wasn’t a need for an App in the first place, but under Verizon that wasn’t going to happen. 
    It doesn’t make sense to blame Apple at all, they didn’t force the nudity ban. Safari and Twitter and Reddit and kik and plenty of apps serve porn. Verizon banned it because they had minors being published, a violation of App Store rules that would ban the app if not corrected. Rather than detect and prevent minors, they decided to ban all nudity completely. That was their choice. Other apps, such as Reddit, moderate and continue to have nudity and porn. Blaming Apple is incorrect. 

    Also, the tumblr app is arguably better than a website alone. Apps don’t have to download HTML, CSS, and non-compiled Javascript over and over, that's what makes them better. HTML was envisioned as a document markup language, not an application presentation layer. Thus its bulkier and slower than a nice compiled app.

    I thought porn was banned on Apple services?
    Apples dedicated to nudity & porn aren't allowed. But these are broader platforms -- tumblr, reddit, twitter, the www itself...They exist outside the App Store and have lots of types of content. Thus far Apple has not forced all app makers (including itself) to limit apps to serving only non-nude content. That would be a pretty big deal if they did.
    watto_cobra
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