Social networks, apps and games
app-icons-Tumblr

Tumblr

Tumblr is a microblogging site that lets you share things like text, photos, videos, GIFs, quotes and links. You can customise your page, share other people’s posts and send private messages. Adult content is not allowed on Tumblr but you might still come across it.

16+

Official age rating

At a glance

Kids use this to...

Play

Create

Learn

Connect

Expert view of the risks...

Sexual

High Risk

Violence & hatred

High Risk

Bullying

High Risk

Suicide & self-harm

High Risk

Drink, drugs & crime

High Risk

O2 Guru top tip

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On Tumblr filtering tags

Tumblr lets you filter out inappropriate content. Agree what should be filtered out with your child and add the tags under ‘filtered tags’ in settings.

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Top tips for staying safe

Exploring apps, sites and games together is a great way to involve your child in the decision-making process.

Be positive about what you see, but also be open about your concerns. Ask them what they think is appropriate and what worries them.

If you decide it’s not appropriate, then make sure you explain your reasons why (and be prepared for an unhappy child).

You might decide it’s ok for your child to use. If so, make sure you follow the tips below to ensure it’s as safe as possible. And work out a time when you’ll next discuss the app.

Help your child think about what they share online and who sees it. Compare it to what they would be happy to share offline.

You might want to start by asking:

  • What kinds of things do you share online?
  • Should we share everything?
  • What shouldn’t we share?

Use examples that are easy for them to understand: “You wouldn’t give your number to a stranger on the street. Is a stranger online any different?”

Listen to their answers. And be positive and encouraging.

Remind them that they shouldn’t share private things, such as:

  • personal information, like emails, names, phone numbers, school names
  • photos of themselves with strangers
  • photos of their body
  • gossip

Explain that you understand the internet is a great place to play, create, learn and connect. But remind them they can talk to you if anything upsets or worries them.

Reassure them that you won’t overreact – you’re just looking out for them.

And if they feel like they can’t speak to you, tell them to talk to an adult they trust, like a teacher or Childline.

It’s important to check the privacy settings on your child's Tumblr account to make sure what they're posting and sharing is kept private or only with friends.

There are a few ways you can increase your privacy on Tumblr, including:

  • Preventing people from finding you using your email address
  • Hiding your blog from search engines, like Google and Bing
  • Making specific posts on your blog private

Tumblr has information on their privacy options. We recommend discussing and exploring these with your child to make sure you both feel safe and secure when using the platform. 

Your child might see something upsetting or negative on Tumblr. If this happens, they might want to report the content or block another user. 

Tumblr has specific guidance on how to report offensive content, as well as how to block other users.

And remember to let your child know that they can always talk to you about worrying things they see online.

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Talking to your child

Having open, regular conversations with your child will help you to really understand and explore the online world together. Our tips and advice can help you start these conversations.

Talk about staying safe online

What kids and parents are saying about Tumblr

We've spoken to over 2,000 parents and kids to find out what they think.

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Kids

What do children and young people dislike about Tumblr?

  • There are lots of sexual images
  • There's inappropriate or upsetting content
  • People can write hateful comment

I can post my art on it and a lot of nice people comment on it. But there is also a lot of porn.

Boy, 14 

 

What do children and young people like about Tumblr?

  • Sharing your interests with others
  • Getting creative ideas
  • It's a space to share opinions with others

I like how diverse it is. There are so many different parts of it: hipster blogs, fandom blogs, blogs dedicated to completely stupid things that make you laugh. But I don’t like how much conflict there is.

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Parents

We asked parents about the following areas of Tumblr:

Signing up

Apart from choosing a user name, it was very easy to sign up. With a valid email address, you can sign up as anybody. Absolutely no measures in place to verify ID or age.

Dad of a 13 year old girl 


I'm quite happy with the registration system.  It was easy to understand and follow and gave full information.

Mum of a 10 year old girl 

Reporting

Overall, parents found it easy to find ways to report unsuitable content or behaviour, and thought it was easy to block people from contact you on the platform.

I found it as easy to block people and report content on Tumblr as I have with other applications such as Facebook.

Dad of 11 and 17 year olds

You can report a particular post as inappropriate but it is not clear how to block a post or user.

Dad of a 13 year old girl

Privacy settings

Overall, parents found it easy to set your profile, account and location to private.

Privacy settings are very basic with only two options: are you public or private and can people contact you with email or not.

Dad of a 13 year old girl

Safety and support

There's the terms and conditions available but there's no quick guide or handy tips relating to standards and safety. It is not easy to find these or they don't exist.

Dad of a 13 year old girl 

Mum of 7 and 9 year old girls

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