By: Phil Ricci, The World: by Phil
A few days ago Tumblr released the new “Explore” page (See above) as a way to better present all of the things that are going on in the Tumblrverse. The premise is to capture content by the use of #tags. You know that thing at the bottom of the page that you never use? Regardless, the intended design of using tags was to help to bring certain topics to the forefront and the give content a greater position.
Now before, Tumblr had something know as the “Directory”, where bloggers could go into their specialized arenas and promote themselves, giving them a greater window to be viewed. It also gave a very well organized presentation that allowed the common user a no mess solution to explore the world.
Both are nice, but here is the blinding difference between the two…
Users recommended blogs they liked in the Directory while a select group of editors choose what gets shown on Explore.
What does that mean? Well so far, it means that most of the same blogs, including the editors themselves, are given top preference. While smaller blogs who were ranked well among users and were growing…don’t exist.
Yes for full openness, I am one of those smaller blogs. I write this little tech and geek blog and love doing it. I make very little with it, but I enjoy watching it grow. The Directory was the way that I was able to promote myself, but don’t think that I’m alone. Out of the all the top blogs that were on my directory (Tech) page, I haven’t seen one “On the Radar.”
The system is flawed and more than a little elitist. If I don’t appeal to a few select members, I can never be featured? Are these champions of content going to send out what their criteria for what their selection is so I know how to conform? Why should I have to anyway?
The beauty of Tumblr is its acceptance of everyone. Whether you wanted to be a serious player, or just talk about how your undies got bunched at school that day, you were cool. You could go, promote yourself and if people dug it, you got followed. Now, you have to impress someone you don’t know or watch your readership stay stagnant or dwindle.
Keep Explore. I like it just fine actually, but do not replace the Directory with it. You may find that if you make hard for voices to be heard, they just might go somewhere else.
- Tumblr Introduces Curation Feature That Encourages Users To Tag Posts (mashable.com)
- staff: It’s hard to organize Tumblr blogs by topic. A single… (shortformblog.tumblr.com)
- Explore Page Makes Discovery At Tumblr Easier (kwiksocial.com)
- Soooooo… we’re trying something. Rather than just having two sites, we’re going to do a domain redirect thangy thang. The archives are still there, so links won’t break, but clearly the Tumblr site is where it’s at. So we’re going to forward shortformblog (shortformblog.tumblr.com)
- Tumblr Copies Twitter’s Concept Of Hashtag To Simplify Its Content Discovery (fastgush.com)