Updated: Apr 7, 2020
Today we live in a media connected society. Instagram, Tiktok, Youtube and Twitter, but right now I want to talk about the "Hell Site" known as Tumblr.
Now I know there are many different websites with the opt "out" platform and Tumblr is only one of these and as such it can be a place where chaos runs rampant. Original content, fandom content, blogs, art, music and all sorts of amazing stuff can be found using a simple tag and follow system.
The problem? Well, generalized tags will leave you open to things that do follow the guidelines but don't agree with you. This is normal. This is society and it all comes down with how we protect and care for ourselves. After being a member of the website for a few years, I have pulled together a plan to avoid the drama. So here you go;
Z's Tumblr Survival Guide:
Download Tumblr Savior or Xkit
Personally, I prefer Xkit because you can do all sorts of amazing stuff. Tagging, posting and interface additions are all amazing tricks that can be done but most of all you can do Black and White Lists (more about that in the next section).
The one thing I appreciate more than anything is the ability to save tag sets that you can add to existing posts without having to open up and edit. Kind of cool to be honest.
Black List / White list
Now aside from using one of the Tumblr add-ons you can also use the internal blacklist. Go into Tumblr settings and scroll down to filtering. You could use Filtered Tags to put in the words that you don't like. For instance, ship tags that squick you or politics that make you uncomfortable. Anything, even those pesky "DNI" phrases.
Now there are moments when people won't use tags or are unaware of them, to which the next step will come into play.
How to Block People
Now I admit, I myself can be a bit of a jerk when I refuse to use certain tags. Granted, I usually don't post crazy things but I have my ships and lately, some ship tags are turning into targets for cyberbullies.
So, when this happens, that you come across someone who either follows my avoidance and has something on their blog you don't like, or perhaps this is a person you don't like in general, then it's time to block. I recommend blocking people who are rude and aggressive to you.
You can go to that person's blog, even if they blocked you out, and do the same in return. There can be unfortunate things that may arise from a block war and one of which might result in the glorious... Anonymous Hate Mail...
The thing about Anon Hate is that it's just a form of cyberbullying, and if you feel you are being repeatedly attacked by a person or persons anonymously then you will have to report these individuals. There are laws against this in place in most States.
Read More: CyberBullying Laws
Now if you have been a victim, you may feel like reporting is not enough. I totally get that and I have a podcast recommendation for you to listen to.
How to identify an anon
There is something cool about Anon messages though, they are not always anonymous. Once you block or report that individual that person will be unmasked and show up in your blocked people list. Voila, exposed.
I would like to remind readers that retaliating is a very bad idea. It perpetuates the cycle and will do nothing more than harm your mental health.
How to respond if you MUST
Ok so maybe the person is not on anon, or perhaps they are antagonizing but not aggressive. You may feel like you need to respond. Do you really need to do this?
The answer is; no, you don't. You don't need to respond to anyone and you are more than allowed to delete messages.
But if you must respond, then be cautious. Sometimes people will be willing to talk like mature adults but more often than not, the person will use this as an opening to express only their point of view with no intention of changing their mind.
This happens with Anti Culture. There will be a blog and a podcast episode on fandom discourse and Anti Culture. Until then, you can read this amazing article on the phenomenon of Purity Culture in Fandom.
Deleting hateful comments
Let's say you posted a nice piece of content. Then someone decides to share their opinion in order to gain attention at the expense of your hard work. What do you do? Do you leave it alone and let the person scream into the void? Do you respond and validate their concerns? Or... do you delete?
You can delete comments. It's ok. Flagging and reporting are also options but sometimes, the comments are more annoying than harassing. So whatever choice you make, just be sure that it's best for your mental health.
Removing posts (Reblogs will not be deleted)
Now let's reverse the situation. Let's say you put up a post that caused some drama. People are mad at you. People are angry with each other. You are now a subject of ridicule and a target for hate.
Choice One: Leave it be and let the chaos play out - Or - Choice Two: Delete that post and let the chaos play out somewhere else.
Now here is the thing, these fights will go on with or without you. You can choose a side or you can learn from both sides. Ultimately the choice is yours to keep or delete a post but once the post becomes too much for you to handle, you need to take a step back and decide what is best for YOU.
Changing Username and Consequences
This is also an option for those of you who want to start over fresh. There is a downside to this as your username will show that you were deactivated. Your links will need to be updated as all your URLs are now changed. No one want's broken links.
You will, however, keep your followers and account and you are now free to enjoy anonymity from people trying to seek you out by the previous name.
Now for some fun stuff!!!!!!
Here are things you can do with Tumblr that most people don't know about and will make your blogs stand out and remain active.
These amazing websites can link up one of your blogs with RSS feeds. This is how I am able to get AO3 updates on my Beetlejuice blog.