If ever there was a website that got more shit on the internet than Tumblr it probably already died. However, like a plague of persistence, Tumblr has endured many trials on the interwebs since it's creation. Like a parasite on the intellectual freedom-scape of the internet, it has sucked content from a generation of millennial idealists who shroud themselves in anonymity and complain/fight for the things that they have to deal with in this fucked up world.
Tumblr in it's purest form is essentially the red-headed stepchild of social media, not widely accepted like Facebook and not underground or edgy enough to be cool like Reddit. It is filled with people who all on some level consider themselves misfits, or people who are so opinionated that the word limit on twitter is just disappointing. Many people have been on Tumblr so long that they are addicted to the monster it has become and are obsessed with the soap opera that is the constant fear of being shut down. Tumblr has been through so much in the last few years that it's hard not to feel stubbornly attached to it. Things like the site wide glitches of 2014, the utter disappointment of Dashcon, the passing of management from the original creators to Yahoo! and the threat of no free internet in 2014. It's like living in an episode of Day of Our Lives, something crazy and new happens every day, and almost 60% of it is cringe-worthy.
Tumblr is also a brewing pot of social anger and fun. There isn't a day that goes by on Tumblr where my blog is not one way or another filled with links to articles about men and woman who have died in vain, mixed between the occasional vine and even more occasional kitten live stream. It's strange because I know Tumblr is a shitty website, everyone on Tumblr knows it's a shitty website, but it's always my first source for news, it's shaped the way I think in life, and it's helped me be more understanding and aware of my fellow man. Many tears were shed on Tumblr when the Orlando Shooting occurred, righteous anger was everywhere anytime a POC lost their life with no lash back, and we blew up in the aftermath of the Harambe incident. It's a website of people who mean well and want to be heard, not unlike a room full of people screaming at each other, but even though we are all screaming at each other we still try and make an effort to hear each other through all the screaming.
I think the best example of what Tumblr really means is the one and only Dashcon. Tumblr has a legendary love/hate relationship with its staff. The website the staff created is filled with glitches and coding that could barely pass for a first graders art project. Dashcon was supposed to be a gift from the staff to the users, it was supposed to be a mini ComicCon with panels, games, and events. Instead, faithful Tumblr users paid 100$ to attend an empty room with a table and a kiddie pool filled with balls. It was literally the biggest joke on the face of the planet and yet all of the Tumblr user who attended set that aside and tried to have a good time getting to know each other. Even when someone peed in the ball pit, they still bonded over their shared hatred of a shitty staff and a shitty website that allowed them to make so many friends.
So TL:DR, Tumblr is a hellscape of glitches, pain, and ballots, but it's also a website of societal anger, close friends, and stubborn determination to watch something die. The reason so many of us stay with it is because to us it's more about the people suffering with you than the actually suffering. I love Tumblr, and if you don't you probably never will.