When Tumblr announced its plan to purge "female-presenting nipples from its service, the volunteer Archive Team leapt into action, working furiously to preserve years of material before Tumblr tore a huge hole in the internet's historical record.
This week, as parent company Verizon was massively writing down its value, Tumblr went through with its purge, relying on its notoriously terrible automated filters to wield the flamethrower.
Throughout Archive Team's labors, they were hounded by Tumblr, who IP-blocked the team's members as they worked, with mass blocks taking place over the weekend during the final push.
Still, archivists have been able to save at least some of Tumblr. According to a real-time tracker for Archive Team’s Tumblr Warrior project, archivists have preserved more than 320,000 Tumblrs from the site, totalling more than 46 terabytes of data.
Though we don’t know for sure why Tumblr is banning archivists, some people Motherboard spoke to have theories: Ernie Smith, a technology journalist who ran his website ShortFormBlog on Tumblr for four years (and regularly contributes to Motherboard), told me that he suspects it’s a matter of tons of people taxing the Tumblr servers at once.
“Archival activity functions not all that dissimilar to a DDOS attack, in that both involve a whole lot of server polling all at once,” he told me in a Twitter message. If this is the case, giving users two weeks’ notice to panic-download the data surely didn’t help the situation.
Archivists Say Tumblr IP Banned Them For Trying to Preserve Adult Content [Samantha Cole/Motherboard]
Tumblr is being sold to WordPress parent company Automattic for a reported price of "less than $3m," a substantial decline from the $1.1B Yahoo paid for the company in 2013 (Yahoo subsequently sold Tumblr and several other startups it had overpaid for and then ruined to Verizon for more than $4b).
Automattic (beloved parent company of WordPress) is buying Tumblr from Verizon (loathesome parent company of Oath, a division named because its users are generally angry enough to swear at it), at a price "well below" $20m (which is well below the $1.1b Yahoo paid in 2013). No word as to whether Automattic will get rid […]
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