Tumblr Introduces “Communities,” Semi-Private Groups With Separate Moderators And Feeds


Tumblr, the popular microblogging platform owned by Automattic, recently announced its latest experimental feature called “Communities.” This new addition aims to enhance the platform’s existing ability to help people find and engage with communities of interest. Tumblr Labs, the division responsible for developing this feature, envisions “Communities” as separate spaces within the platform where like-minded individuals can connect and interact with each other.

Key Takeaway

Tumblr, owned by Automattic, is introducing “Communities,” an experimental feature that enables the creation of semi-private groups with dedicated moderators and feeds. This new offering aims to boost engagement and provide users with a focused space to connect around shared interests. By capitalizing on Tumblr’s existing strengths in community-building, the platform aspires to expand its social networking capabilities and attract users from other platforms.

Creating Semi-Private Spaces with Dedicated Moderators and Feeds

According to Tumblr, these communities will be “semi-private” areas with their own moderators, rules, and privacy settings. This setup is similar to popular online forums like Reddit’s subreddits or X’s Communities, where users can join specific groups centered around particular topics. Each community on Tumblr will have its own dedicated feed, separate from the algorithmic “For You” and chronological “Following” feeds, offering a focused experience for users.

Tumblr’s approach ensures that interactions within a community remain within that space. While users can reblog posts within a community, they cannot do so outside of it. Additionally, replies within a community function as a more traditional comment section, enhancing engagement and fostering discussion among members.

A New Way to Interact and Connect

The introduction of “Communities” provides Tumblr users with an alternative way to engage with their favorite content, eliminating the need to search for hashtags or specific blogs. By allowing users to form communities, Tumblr expands its social networking capabilities beyond online publishing. This move could position Tumblr as a competitive player in the social networking arena, potentially challenging established platforms such as X (previously Twitter).

Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg acknowledged that Tumblr has seen benefits from attracting entire communities from other social networks. He referred to the example of a Lego community migrating from Instagram to Tumblr, highlighting the potential for Tumblr to serve as a new home for various interest groups looking to connect and share content.

Embracing Feedback and Iteration

Tumblr, in a blog post, emphasized that the “Communities” feature is still in an experimental stage. The company aims to validate the concept and gather feedback from users both within and outside the platform. Over the next few weeks, Tumblr will reach out to users to test the prototype and consider their input. This iterative process will allow Tumblr to refine and fine-tune the feature, ensuring it resonates well with the community.

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