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Friday, May 27, 2011

How to Use Tumblr - wikiHow

How to Use Tumblr

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit
Tumblr is a micro-blogging service which is on a continuous rise, and has become a serious competitor in the social media market.


  1. Go to Tumblr to sign up for a free account. It is at: You will need to choose a username, which will act as your display name on the Tumblr Dashboard, as well as part of the URL of your blog. For example: ''. However, your URL can be changed at any point after this, it is not fixed.
  2. Get to know the seven different types of posts. The types of posts are varied to allow your best approaches to be put forward; you may even like to try each style over time. The seven types of posts are as follows:
    • Text. A text post consists of plain text. Images, hyperlinks, videos, and some HTML-based widgets can be added. The raw HTML of the post can be edited.
    • Photo. A photo post consists of a single image with accompanied by a brief description. Photos can be uploaded from your PC, or you can use the URL of an image already on the web.
    • Quote. A quote post consists of title text (the quote) and a single line of body text (citing the origin of the quote).
    • Link. A link post consists entirely of a single piece of descriptive text, which is linked to the website or webpage being described.
    • Chat. A chat post is used to share a snippet of conversation.
    • Audio. An audio post consists of a single .mp3 file (be it a music track, podcast etc), which can be played via a Flash music player. Only one audio post is permitted daily.
    • Video. A video post consists of an embedded video, which can be uploaded from your PC, or imported from websites such as YouTube or Vimeo.
  3. Get followers. Over time, you will gain 'followers'. These are fellow Tumblr users who subscribe to your blog. Whatever you post will appear on their Dashboard. You can follow other Tumblr users. Their posts will then appear on your Dashboard. If a person you don't want following you does so, you can block them. The more followers you get, the more chance you have of getting your posts 'reblogged' and 'liked'.
  4. Like and reblog. If someone likes your post so much that they want to share it, they can 'reblog' it. If someone reblogs one of your posts, their followers will see it on their Dashboards. If someone doesn't want to reblog your post, they can 'like' your post. You can reblog and like the posts of others.
  5. Understand messages. If you allow access to your 'Ask box', you can receive questions from anyone who uses Tumblr, as well as anonymous visitors. Your answers to these questions will be posted to your blog, for all of your followers and visitors to see.
  6. Queuing and drafts. If you wish to publish a string of posts while you're offline, you can add the posts to your queue, and choose at which intervals of time they'll be published (eg, every 15 minutes). Alternatively, you can appoint a certain time at which the posts are published, including date and time. These features are helpful if you're going on holiday, and won't have an Internet connection during your vacation. Drafts, meanwhile, allow you to save a post online; you can then finish the post when you next log onto Tumblr, and publish it whenever you wish.
  7. Customize your Tumblr. The Customize pane gives you access to all of the under-the-bonnet settings for your blog, and is split into several sections.
    • Info. Choose the title of your blog, alter the sidebar description, choose an avatar and change your username/URL.
    • Theme. Select from a range of pre-made themes for your blog. Alternatively, create your own HTML code, to personalize your blog to the max.
    • Appearance. Change your background/header image, tagline, and a selection of others options. Some themes allow room for advanced features.
    • Pages. Add/delete/edit webpages on your blog. Creating an 'About' page or an 'FAQ' page is common practice among Tumblr users.
    • Services. Use this pane to hook your blog up to other websites, including Facebook, Twitter and Feedburner.
    • Community. Change who can reply to your posts, alter privacy settings for your Ask box and set up a user submissions page.
    • Advanced. This is where you'll find any other options, including time zone selection, custom CSS and how many posts you wish to display per page on your blog.
  8. Post blogs. To optimize the quality of your posts, ensure that text is well-written, images are relevant, and you keep to the theme of your blog. The most popular Tumblr users are those who dedicate their blogs to a certain purpose. Add relevant tags to your posts, so that users searching for a certain topic are more likely to stumble upon your blog. It's also a good idea to cite the sources of things you did not write/create, or you'll be shunned as a plagiarist. To protect yourself from plagiarism, type the URL of your own blog in the 'Source' box on the sidebar of the post composition page. Ensure that your material is interesting, and post at least once a day, or your followers will get bored with your inactivity, and may even unfollow you.
  9. Check out the directory. The Directory features all of the most popular Tumblr blogs in each category (for example, 'Inspiration'. 'Personalities'). Don't panic if you don't see yourself there at first. It takes months before you can accumulate enough followers to find yourself on the Directory for your blog category. Every Tuesday, it is common practice to vote your favourite blog into the Tumblr Directory. The more you participate in this tradition, the bigger the likelihood that you'll be voted for.



  • Never beg for followers. The more you beg for followers, the less chance you have of getting them.
  • Don't post too little, and don't post too much. Your followers won't want their Dashboard filled with your material, but at the same time, they don't want you to be boringly inactive.
  • Don't panic if you don't get too many followers in your first few weeks. It takes time to build up a follower base.
  • Get to know the common themes and memes on Tumblr.
  • Don't be afraid to post your opinion just because you think it will upset people (within reason, for example, no racist comments should be posted). Tumblr is a place of free expression, and people will honour you for posting what you really think.
  • Don't be racist, homophobic or sexist. Don't post any kind of judgemental, segregative remarks. The people of Tumblr are very strong believers of equality.
  • Tumblr is a movement and a family. Don't be competitive just because someone has more followers than you. Tumblr is about freedom of speech, not how many followers you can get.
  • Don't steal another user's posts without citing their blog as the source. Plagiarism is very heavily shunned on Tumblr.
  • If your blog features any kind of nudity or material which is not for young eyes, be sure to have it classified as NSFW.


  • Don't use Tumblr if you're a business. It's largely used by teenagers with laid-back attitudes, not businesses looking for a professional blogging platform.

Things You'll Need

  • Internet access
  • Tumblr account
  • Ideas and inspiration to add to Tumblr

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Use Tumblr. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

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