pornhub really, really wants to buy tumblr

The Verizon Media Group-owned blogging platform could soon well be on the market, and Pornhub are desperate for it.

by Alim Kheraj
03 May 2019, 2:57pm

When Tumblr CEO Jeff D’Onofrio announced last year that the popular blogging site would be banning adult content, you could hear the platform’s death knell begin to ring out. While Tumblr is also a place for fandoms, artists and memes, much of the site was dedicated to NSFW content. It provided a safe space for adult entertainers, sex workers, LGBTQ people and everyday folks to express themselves online outside the strict rules of Facebook and Instagram, and the toxicity of Twitter. As some people suggested, without NSFW content Tumblr was dead.

In the resulting months, the fate of the site has been precarious. According to analytics site SimilarWeb, Tumblr lost nearly 200 million monthly visit between the months of December and February after the porn ban came into effect. And now it’s been rumoured that Verizon Media Group are thinking of selling it off.

Of course, you might remember when Yahoo, who are now part of Verizon Media Group, bought the blogging site for a whopping $1.1 billion in 2013. That value was reassessed in 2016, with the company suggesting that Tumblr was worth $230 million. It now seems, as it’s value continues to wane, the company wants to rid itself of the platform altogether. According to a report by the Washington Post, sources close to the matter say that Verizon are looking to “unload” Tumblr.

But who would want to be buy a social networking platform whose value is currently precarious? Well, the answer, quite simply, is Pornhub. In fact, as soon as it was announced in December that Tumblr would no longer be hosting NSFW content, Pornhub made it clear that they were ready and willing to move into that arena.

Now, with rumours afloat that Tumblr could go to the highest bidder, Pornhub Vice President, Corey Price, has doubled down on the company’s wish to take ownership of the site. In an email to Buzzfeed, Price explained that, should the sale go ahead, Pornhub would make reinstating Tumblr’s NSFW aspect a central focus.

“There are obvious synergies between the two brands and value Pornhub could derive from Tumblr,” Price told Buzzfeed News. “We’re extremely interested in acquiring the platform and are very much looking forward to one day restoring it to its former glory with NSFW content.”

Naturally, Pornhub will likely struggle with the same problem that Verizon had in policing the content uploaded to Tumblr. But perhaps given the nature of Pornhub as a platform, it will be harder for illegal content, like the child pornography that was found on Tumblr and which resulted in the porn ban, to fall through the gaps. Of course, Pornhub still has a problem with pirated material, with Techcrunch suggesting that Pornhub’s parent company, MindGeek, could use this to its advantage while exploiting the work of adult performers and sex workers. Clearly, though, rumours of the death of Tumblr’s may have been premature.

This article originally appeared on i-D UK.