I’m not a blogger. Blogging is for authoritative voices with knowledge to dispense. Fred WIlson, he’s a blogger. Mark Suster, he’s definitely a blogger. Me? I’m still trying to figure it all out.
Kind of like Tumblr.
Its kind of a blogging platform. Its kind of a music service. Its kind of a photo bookmarking site. Its kind of a social network. Tumblr is figuring it all out too.
As a company, its taken them years to find their market. Maybe they still haven’t. The founders and investors stuck it out when hockey stick growth was the promise, not the reality. They saw a small, core group of users who loved the service and they chose to believed when most others didn’t. I dig that.
Its creators have strong opinions about the direction it should be going. They aren’t afraid to take away features they aren’t happy with (Tumbilarity!?!). They also aren’t afraid to tell users who complain to go away. I dig that too.
The dashboard isn’t an empty text box staring at me. Judging me. Its a vibrant window into the images, sounds and ideas of people I’ve grown to care about. I see them in a more human way than I do on any other service. The dashboard inspires me to write or let’s me phone it in with a reblog when I’m not feeling it.
You never know what’s going to happen when you post to Tumblr. Something you think will catch fire fizzles. Other times, posts you thought were flat will catch fire. Your followers, and their followers, add their ideas to yours. Each reblog knocks a rough edge off an idea or builds on a half baked thought as the post, quite literally, tumbles forward. A long diatribe can be distilled down to a single paragraph, or even sentence, that contains its essence. This collective refinement can be entertaining, infuriating and enlightening all at the same time.
Yeah, Tumblr is kind of a mess. Its a little bit broken. Its a little ADD. Its spread a little too thin. Just like me.
Which is why I love the service and why I don’t plan to leave.