Tumblr changes its mind and decides to start selling ad space

tumblr changes its mind and decides to start selling ad spaceWith more than 52 million blogs set up on its platform, Tumblr has been an incredible success since it launched five years ago. But despite receiving around 13 billion views a month, the company still makes very little money.

That could be about to change, however, as from the beginning of May the service will start selling space to advertisers.

This may come as a surprise to those who recall an interview given to the LA Times two years ago by Tumblr’s founder and CEO, David Karp, when he said: “We’re pretty opposed to advertising. It really turns our stomachs.”

And so it was at the Ad Age Digital Conference in New York City this week that 25-year-old Karp stood before an expectant audience and, with his tail positioned firmly between his legs, opened his keynote speech with the words: “We’re pretty opposed to advertising. It really turns our stomachs.” Everyone knew what was coming next.

He even went so far as to say he had probably been “an idiot” to have come out with those words two years earlier.

Karp said that starting May 2, his website will begin utilizing the small ‘Radar’ box on the Tumblr dashboard page for ad space. Its location means the ads won’t appear on the blogs themselves, but rather in a members-only area. The Radar box is currently used to highlight popular posts and gets around 120 million impressions a day as users log into their dashboard, Ad Age reported.

Tumblr’s CEO declined to give details about which companies had already bought ad space on the site.

The New York-based start-up currently makes money from sales of custom blog themes, and has also received funding from investors. More recently it began allowing its users to draw attention to their posts through a highlighting function, which costs $1 a time. But by going down the advertising route, the business should be able to start generating some serious cash.

If you’re a Tumblr user, how do you feel about ads coming to the microblogging site? Does it turn your stomach, perhaps?

Movies & TV

Move over Superman, Aquaman is here to save DC's live-action cinema universe

DC Comics' aquatic superhero Aquaman finally gets his solo feature with Jason Momoa in the title role, and director James Wan's adventure manages to avoid feeling waterlogged while offering up some amazing visuals and intense action.
Smart Home

Watch this NASA engineer own porch pirates with a glitter bomb package

NASA engineer Mark Rober had a package stolen from him and the police wouldn't do anything about it, so he took matters into his own hands and built a glitter bomb package to thwart would-be thieves.
Movies & TV

'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse' is one of the hero's best movies ever

One of Spider-Man's most memorable big-screen adventures, animated feature Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse simultaneously feels like nothing we've ever seen before and a tale that feels familiar in all the best ways.
Music

Jam out in style with the 25 best playlists on Spotify

Music is the world's most potent drug, and the best playlists on Spotify will make you catch feelings. We've scoured the service for its top collections, and brought them together in one place -- for you.
Social Media

This band owns Twitter, according to list of top accounts and tweets for 2018

What was the biggest buzz on Twitter in 2018? Twitter's 2018 Year in Review highlights the biggest tweets, accounts, and hashtags. The most-tweeted celebrities, movies, TV shows, athletes, politicians and more in Twitter's 2018 trends.
Social Media

What do yodeling and Kylie Jenner have in common? YouTube’s top 2018 videos

In a true nod to the variety found on YouTube, the platform's top 10 list of videos from 2018 range from celebrities to sports, from perfectly tossing a picture frame on the wall to a kid yodeling in aisle 12 at Walmart.
Home Theater

It took Tom Cruise to raise awareness of this troublesome TV setting

Tom Cruise, in an unexpected PSA tweet, asks you to turn off motion interpolation on your TV, but stops short of how to do it. Here's more on the topic, along with links to a guide on how to rid your TV of the dreaded "soap opera effect."
Computing

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.
Business

Amazon scouted airport locations for its cashier-free Amazon Go stores

Representatives of Amazon Go checkout-free retail stores connected with officials at Los Angeles and San Jose airports in June to discuss the possibility of cashier-free grab-and-go locations in busy terminals.
Social Media

Snapchat facial recognition could soon power a new portrait mode, code suggests

Digging into Snapchat's code suggests a handful of upcoming camera features, including a portrait mode. The feature appears to use facial recognition A.I. to blur the background. The code also suggests an updated camera interface.
Computing

Google+ continues to sink with a second massive data breach. Abandon ship now

Google+ was scheduled to shut its doors in August 2019, but the second security breach in only a few months has caused the company to move its plan forward a few months. It might be a good idea to delete your account sooner than later.
Social Media

Walkie-talkie voice messaging finally comes to Instagram

In its latest grab from messaging apps, Instagram now lets you send walkie-talkie style voice messages. Apps such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Snapchat, and iMessage have offered the feature for some time.
Social Media

‘YouTube Rewind 2018’ is about to become its most disliked video ever

YouTube is about to achieve a record it really doesn't want — that of "most-disliked video." Yes, its annual recap of featuring popular YouTubers has gone down really badly this year.
Social Media

GIF almost anywhere with Giphy’s new keyboard and sticker maker

We all love GIFs, but not every app supports them. Fortunately, the new Giphy' keyboard brings GIFs to any iOS app that supports multimedia. The update also comes with a new tool for creating animated stickers.