dear invisible tumblr friends,
But tumblr has decided I don’t need to know what you’re up to. In a very typical tumblr move they have added a feature that plays out like a bug. So some algorithm designed to, I don’t know, lighten the load on the servers or something, has made it so we see less on our dashboard. Mostly what we see after the first page is from the last 100 people we followed. So, if like me, you follow more than 100 people, you are going to miss out on posts from the people you have followed the longest.
Wait. Really? Really? This makes zero sense. I haven’t noticed, particularly, but that’s because I follow 1,185 people. There have been times when I’ve noticed that certain friends of mine haven’t shown up on my dash, but I figured that was just Tumblr being its regularly non-functioning self.
So. Is this true? If so, it wouldn’t necessarily surprise: There’s an “oh don’t worry, you’ll have zero idea what you’re missing because we we won’t tell you” attitude pervasive in these nu-Internet companies. (See also Facebook’s “top stories,” which UGH STOP FACEBOOK, and Twitter’s “cream to the top” search results, which drive me absolutely bananas when I’m trying to actually search for things. Although that might be a bug of the iPhone client, since Echofon returns more comprehensive results.) I’m guessing it’s a hedge against ad-blocking, although it is frightening in large part because it assumes so much ignorance on the part of the user (hello I am a GROWN WOMAN WHO KNOWS HOW TO MANAGE HER INFORMATION HERSELF) and in even larger part because it assumes what the user “should” “want” to read (or I guess in the case of Tumblr see). We don’t all want to be awash in pictures of bang-wearing cuties fluttering their eyelids and “motivational” “slogans,” you know.
Yes, this. Despite all the nonsense I like Tumblr because it is (or was) the only network which trusts me to maintain my own filter. I DON’T have to see everything. But like Maura says I want to know what I’m not saying. Customisable smart filters would be great. “Don’t show me any run of 5 pictures posted in under 20 minutes” for instance, “Block this hashtag for this time period”. Unsexy, un-2.0 MICROSOFT worked rule-based filters out for Outlook in 2000 or so!
But these sites aren’t in the business of building useful features for heavy users, there’s very little percentage in that I’d guess.
(I appreciate there are excellent technical reasons why I can’t have my personal moon on a stick here, BTW, but I still don’t want Tumblr to have its own Edgerank)