AATW recently wrote a long post on his tumblelog, denouncing the virtues of long posts on tumblelogs. Skipping past the obvious irony and focussing on the point: he used me as an example of what-not-to-do (or what he’d rather you didn’t do), so I suppose I should write an equally lengthy response…

…This whole disagreement can be settled in one short sentence (and I think that’s how AATW would like it): do what you want with your tumblelog.

That this keeps coming up underscores the unusual nature of the Tumblr platform (especially at the present size of the community): while Tumblr is a tool for creativity (which makes its use subject to solitary discretion), the extent to which we are linked involves more judgment, reaction, and criticism than is ordinarily associated with writing and reading.

The Dashboard is a lot like Facebook’s “News Feed,” and just as I tire of seeing my ex-girlfriend’s newest photos with her bigger and better paramour I sometimes get peevish about Tumblr posts: “That was already posted!”  “That’s not your image!” “That’s stupid!” I know reactions to my stuff are probably the same.

Then I remember, as I said last time this occurred: everyone has a tumblelog for his or her own reason, and it’s no one’s fucking business what goes on it. Features like Tumblr Radar and Staff Picks actually bother me, partly, because in wanting to be picked (me! me! me!) I can sense how I need to conform to the community’s expectations. No more long articles, just short, self-referential quotes from anarchists or web 2.0 gurus; no analysis of the news, just snippets of snarky insults directed at our common enemies; etc.

But Nostrich is right and this whole argument is moronic: if you don’t like my long posts, you needn’t read them. It’s simple and easy!