In the beginning I was resistant to tumblr. I was convinced that it was filled with pretentious users participating in nonsensical rebloggings, incoherent ramblings, and a basic holier than thou attitude. In short, I didn't understand the platform.
It wasn't until I wanted to expand the A Bit of Geek presence that I made an account and slowly fell down the rabbit hole. At first, I was confused as all hell. The site seems very stupid, and pointless, because you don't have anyone to follow. Or rather, you don't know who to follow if you, like me, didn't have tumblr friends to give you some great starting suggestions. That will change though! Plus the latter half of this article will give you some tips on how to get going :D Nowadays tumblr is one of my favorites places to go for artistic inspiration, entertainment, social justice awareness, and a general interest in learning new things.
It's an easy way to find people who don't think like you do. If you're intrigued by this foreign notion, then you can bounce around and find other users who share this new idea, this unfamiliar point of view. Maybe you just want to explore theories that are contrary to yours in an effort to better understand or solidify your own opinions. Perhaps you'll learn new things about yourself in the process and discover that you're a feminist, an idealist, a dreamer, an ally, obsessed with vintage photos, intrigued by 1920s suitcase designs, fascinated by movies with a certain theme, a spinning wheel enthusiast, desperate to start homesteading, and on and on. Perhaps you never realized what it was like to truly be in a fandom and, after accidentally stumbling across someone's Sherlock devoted tumblr, you can now see the appeal of the show.
So, my advice for starting out on tumblr! Pick a person that you admire and then see if they have a tumblr, or see if there's a tumblr about them. Take Wil Wheaton, for example. He is magnificent at tumblr. From him I get so much more than geek references and the occasional Star Trek: TNG reblog. I receive exceptional political and economic commentary that, as a result, has made me much more informed on the current state of the US government than I've ever been before. Many times I am presented with a small and powerful quote accompanied by a link to a larger article. These citations of a good tumblr user help to perpetuate being informed, and I can get the full "experience" and not just the (sometimes) shocking quote.
The diversity of my tumblr feed also prevents me from being exposed to just news or just serene photos. I would like to stay informed and also not feel like garbage after reading depressing news report after depressing news report. Having that kind of information interspersed with the occasional hilarious Chief O'Brien comic makes the world feel a little better.
At its core it's a fun and easy way to create a collection of things that you love, like, find interesting, or fascinating. If you want to be organized about it then go to Pinterest, but if you simply like to ingest and then move on then tumblr is the place for you! Just be sure to find the good users: the ones who quote and cite sources, so that you're able to, as an adult with a thirst for knowledge and proof, can move from intrigued and curious to informed and opinionated.
And that is why I think everyone should be on tumblr. In my experience you'd be hard pressed to find a place as entertaining and informative. The knowledge that tumblr has randomly and suddenly shoved in front of me has been life changing, even though that sounds a tad dramatic. I've also found so many new artists that inspire me to push harder at my craft. I love tumblr!
You can follow my personal account mirandajabog for a catch-all of things I like and abitofgeek for general geek goodness! Do you have a tumblr?
*header image source. Kind of.