Rave: Tumblr promotes social activism

Julia Perkins

Some people believe blogging on Tumblr is a waste of time filled with endless cat GIFs and pictures of attractive British men like a procrastinator’s paradise. And while these things make Tumblr addictive, the website reminded us last week of what really makes it special.

Ever since the Ferguson grand jury decided not to indict white police officer Darren Wilson for killing African-American Michael Brown, my Tumblr dashboard has been filled with posts about Brown’s death and other prejudice acts. While many of the posts were opinionated, others seeked to inform people about what was going on in Ferguson. Users created masterposts linking to news articles and testimonies from witnesses. Popular media focused on the violence in Ferguson, but Tumblr users reminded people that many were protesting peacefully and critiqued the information coming from mainstream sources.

The Stop the Parade movement, an attempt to protest the grand jury decision at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, started on Tumblr. Although the protesters did not meet their goal of being shown on national television, this represents how Tumblr helps people to fight for a better world in real life. And yes, I probably would have gotten more homework done over Thanksgiving break if I hadn’t spent the majority of the week on Tumblr. But I am a better, more informed person because of the time I spent on the website.