Tumblr to Ban Pornography Starting on December 17

Tumblr to Ban Pornography Starting on December 17

Tumblr has announced that it is to introduce a ban on all adult content across the platform in a major reversal of policy.

Tumblr said all content including photos, videos or gifs that "show real-life human genitals or female-presenting nipples" would be banned, alongside any content that depicts sex acts.

Tumblr's new policy comes just weeks after their app was pulled from Apple's store after images of child abuse were found to have got around the site's filters.

In its blog post, Tumblr also outlines examples of exceptions to the new policy change, stating that "exposed female-presenting nipples in connection with breastfeeding, birth or after-birth moments and health-related situations, such as post-mastectomy or gender confirmation surgery", will still be permitted on the site.

Tumblr says it will start sending email notifications to affected blog owners starting today.

Existing content that falls under the umbrella of Tumblr's upcoming rules will be set to private, according to The Verge, which means it will not be shareable with others on the platform. Affected users can appeal the classification of various posts as pornographic.

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The decision also reflects challenges at Oath, the media business which owns Tumblr in addition to many former assets of Yahoo and AOL such as the Huffington Post. It's the latest step in the platform's struggle with adult content.

The company had a face-off with South Korean authorities regarding its stance on adult content past year but eventually agreed to cooperate with authorities in June, and remove some of the reported content.

Since Tumblr was founded in 2007, it has been a go-to place for risque content barred from other social media sites like Facebook or Instagram - so the announcement has users mourning the loss of the platform to share and discuss their preferred porn and adult content. Apple said the platform failed to detect "child exploitation imagery", hence its decision to drop the app altogether, despite its large following and install count.

Tumblr's chief executive, Jeff D'Onofrio, said that as the site has grown, its responsibilities to "different age groups, demographics, cultures, and mindsets" have increased and it has now chose to remove all adult material from 17 December.

Oath was founded in a bid to build an online media business that had sufficient scale to challenge Facebook and Google for advertising revenue, but has recently seen the departure of chief executive Tim Armstrong, with its parent company, the U.S. telecoms firm Verizon, taking a closer interest in its activities.

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