Tumblr makes it easier to find GIFs with new search tool

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Finding the perfect reaction GIF is difficult enough from an editorial standpoint, but making matters worse was the fact that before today, there really wasn’t an easy way to sift through the microblogging/social network’s mountainous collection of those looping bundles of joy. But the Yahoo-owned site debuted a new tool, a search engine for GIFs, that’ll hopefully do away with the problem of wittily responding to your Internet friends once and for all.

It’s pretty barebones as far as search engines go. You click the new GIF button, a search box appears, and you type what you’re looking for. That may not help if you’re starting from square one – GIFs, visual spectacles they are, are sometimes hard to describe in worded search terms – but admittedly still a lot better than searching among the detritus on any of the major Web search engines. Plus, if you find a GIF you like enough to republish, its creator will get a nice little toast notification informing them of their work’s inclusion. Warm fuzzies all around.

It’s not the first big enhancement Tumblr’s gotten in recent years, and likely won’t be the last. Tumblr launched a redesigned client two years ago that added handling of multiple tags in queries, related blogs in search results, a new filter menu to filter by post site, and a toggle to hide its infamously NSFW content. Earlier this year, Tumblr rolled out enhanced post creation tools with “a more refined user experience” and a new tool bar with buttons to insert multimedia.

GIFs support, oddly enough, has dominated the news about social media lately. Facebook finally added support for animated images on the Web this week, and image-sharing service Imgur launched an Android app with, among other features, the ability to display GIFs in all their motion glory.

Ready to get your multi-frame groove on? Tumblr’s rolling out GIF search to all users today, but only on the Web – mum’s the word on a mobile equivalent right now. Stay tuned.

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