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The Tumblr ban on adult content has apparently hurt the social media site’s traffic by a drastic amount.

Back in November, Tumblr was removed from Apple’s app store following concerns that child pornography had made its way onto the platform.

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Following the app’s removal, Tumblr announced that it would be banning all adult content from the site, and it was revealed that the app would be available for download again.

Adult content refers to “ “photos, videos or GIFs that show real-life human genitals or female-presenting nipples, and any content—including photos, videos, GIFs and illustrations—that depicts sex acts.”

Now, it’s been three months since the company has rolled out Safe Mode. Since then, Tumblr has seen a drop by 150 million visits.

From December 2018 to February 2019, traffic fell from 521 million visits to 369 visits, according to SimilarWeb. This is roughly a 30 percent decrease in visits. 

The decrease in traffic is likely due to the ban, as many users used the website for adult content. There have been many online petitions with hundreds of thousands of signatures asking for the company to reverse the policy.

After many people ditched the sight after the initial announcement, the company put out a rule clarification explaining the content ban and the appeal process for flagged content. 

You can read the full post below:

Hey Tumblr–

A couple of weeks ago we announced an update to our Community Guidelines regarding adult content, and we’ve received a lot of questions and feedback from you. First and foremost, we are sorry that this has not been an easy transition and we know we can do a better job of explaining what we’re doing. We knew this wasn’t going to be an easy task and we appreciate your patience as we work through the challenges and limitations of correctly flagging tens of billions of GIFs, videos, and photos.

Today, December 17th, our policy begins to take effect. This means that we will start hiding – not deleting – posts that contain GIFs, videos, and photos from public view that are in violation of our policy. Again, this is a complex problem, and over the coming weeks we will gradually, and carefully, flag more adult content. (Yes, we will still make mistakes, but hopefully fewer and fewer.)

More importantly, we want to clarify the things that you, as a community, have asked about the most.

Tumblr will always be a place to explore your identity. Tumblr has always been home to marginalized communities and always will be. We fully recognize Tumblr’s special obligation to these communities and are committed to ensuring that our new policy on adult content does not silence the vital conversations that take place here every day.

LGBTQ+ conversations, exploration of sexuality and gender, efforts to document the lives and challenges of those in the sex worker industry, and posts with pictures, videos, and GIFs of gender-confirmation surgery are all examples of content that is not only permitted on Tumblr but actively encouraged.

We also want to reiterate some important information from our Support post:

Your content will not be deleted. If your post(s) are flagged under the new policy, they will be hidden from public view and will only be visible to you. You can appeal these flags if you feel your content was erroneously marked as adult content. Upcoming feature changes will also make appeals more manageable for those of you with multiple flagged posts. Your blog won’t be deleted if you’ve posted adult content in the past, and there is nothing you need to do if you have interacted with adult content up until now–it will just be flagged and not publicly viewable. Don’t forget too that you can download your content. It’s yours after all, and we don’t take that lightly.”

Tumblr users can read the new community guidelines in full here.

What do you think of the decrease in Tumblr visitors? Sound off in the comments below!

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