Tumblr: Social Media for the Socially Awkward

socially awkward

Everyone has their favorite social media site. Hell most us even have our favorite social media site to hate (spoiler, it’s normally Facebook).

My favorite, hands down, is Tumblr.  Which if you think about it, makes sense as it’s pretty much the Internet’s home of nerdy people and gorgeous photos. It’s a natural fit for me. Twitter requires too much cleverness and instant response- I just don’t have the time, or perhaps the networking skills to be able to conquer it from a personal perspective (are updates on what I’m doing every second of the day really that interesting?). Facebook is too voyeuristic, and Pinterest too DIY.

[Except of course for LD’s pages on all these sites which you should stalk obsessively.]

Tumblr, while not innately user-friendly, is the most perfect social media platform for the socially awkward. You don’t ever have to actually create anything. Don’t have the software, the wit, or the skills to make hilarious memes, gorgeous photos, or thought provoking content? No worries, you can be the creeper who just looks at everyone else’s. You can even “create” a gorgeous Tumblr page without having an ounce of originality. The “reblog” button is a beautiful thing I tell you. And for the OCD you can create a blog exclusively color or content-coded.

The gist of it is micro-blogging, so you find the folks you want to follow (pick a topic, follow all the people who post things that interest you), and you can go through 50 blogs in 30 seconds from your dashboard. It’s the best of RSS, the majority of the pieces are picture based and instantly absorbable, and perfect for the “I have no time, but I need an instant distraction.” It’s a rather brilliant response to people having negative zero attention spans and the ongoing disdain of actually reading things (insert the irony of this post here). Your dashboard consists of what you want to see, however limited or diverse that may be, and you can absorb your own corner of the Internet in minutes or hours, depending how deep you want to delve. (Listen it takes a long time to get through the Sherlock tag, ok? Don’t judge.)

The best part of Tumblr though, is its innate geekiness. I think all the most popular fandoms have found their home there. At any given time you can find a completely non-related post that has been hi-jacked by “The Avengers,” “Doctor Who,” “Sherlock,” “Supernatural,” “Harry Potter,” “Star Trek,” “Hannibal” or even “Spongebob.” It’s so prevalent, Buzzfeed even made a list about it. If you want to know everything there is to know, from live-update spoilers on filming (#setlock) to absurdly graphic fanart (let’s call a spade a spade, it’s just porn), type in your favorite show/book/movie’s name into the search bar and have fun falling into the abyss.

It’s also strangely enough a community, which still seems counterintuitive to me as it’s not very easy to communicate 1:1 with people. That doesn’t seem to stop anyone though; they find their Internet soul mates who reblog their very “omg twinsies” posts over and over and cling to them like they’re the last human on earth. There are whole subsets of Tumblr jokes that no one else would get, and “head canon” takes on a whole new perspective over there. For example did you know John Watson is apparently made out of kittens, jam and rage? And it’s an unwritten rule that any of your favorite male characters are secretly doing it offscreen (Tumblr #fact).

Essentially, Tumblr is where you go to pull up a chair, grab some popcorn, and watch the Internet lose its mind. It never fails to entertain and as a wallflower myself who greatly enjoys watching people be completely ridiculous, I just kick back and enjoy the show.

But if an Internet-shitshow is not your cuppa, dive in for the news blurbs, the stunning photography, and dear lord the travel blogs. Want to feel nostalgic and run away from your life as fast as you can? Click on the travel tag. You’ll be packing your bags in a hot second.

To get you started, here are some of my favorite Tumblrs:

  • Shortform Blog – a fantastic and brief overview of news around the world (plus the whole thing looks like an infograph).
  • The Geekiary  – an ode to all things nerdy
  • Don’t Feed the Journalists – a hilarious look at life as a journalist- through gifs.
  • Fucking Recipes– it’s an all caps, all-curse words, high-octane recipe blog. It is perfection.
  • A Girl, A Style– ok, true confession, I wish I could be this girl when I grow-up. Her Tumblr, site, Twitter, and Instagram are all just gorgeous and classy.
  • Fuck It and Move to Britain– stunning pictures of the UK (though admittedly very slow to load).
  • Maddie on Things– This dog can stand on anything.
  • Dog Shaming– everyone loves a good tale of a dog gone bad.
  • Iceland Wants to Be Your Friend – The Icelandic tourism board had the genius idea of pretending the island could talk and that it wants to befriend you. I fell for it completely.
  • Suri’s Burn Book – I dare you to not kill hours reading “Suri Cruise’s” commentary on her fellow celebs kids.
  • And my all time favorite: ANIMALS TALKING IN ALL CAPS
ANIMALS TALKING IN ALL CAPS

But hurry up and start Tumblring soon, because Yahoo just bought it and Lord knows what that will mean for a site whose entire awesomeness depends on user generated content.

And the porn. Can’t forget the porn, after all isn’t that what the Internet is for?

 

Tweet me @tea_imperialist and let me know your favorite Tumblr blogs!

 

 

Katie
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