Brand Integrity: Tumblr + Yahoo!

My personal Tumblr feed went crazy over the weekend when rumors of Yahoo! Buying the popular micro blogging site first hit the web. Monday morning, Tumblr user’s worst fears were realized and the buy became official; Yahoo! Is now the new owner of Tumblr. The deal is expected to close towards the end of 2013, and David Carp the current Tumblr CEO will maintain his position.

Tumblr users were outraged, some even threatening to delete their blogs and leave Tumblr for good. Tumblr, because it is such a small and personal blogging community, is known for being a haven for creatives. The liberal use of movie and television clips to make GIFS and the posting of explicit images are definitely a few of Tumblr’s trademarks that many fear will disappear under Yahoo!’s supervision. Many Tumblr users fear that, their favorite blogging site will never be the same again.

Do users have the right to feel this way? Absolutely! Time and time again we have watched larger, more lucrative brands come in and completely makeover a smaller brand. When the focus becomes less on maintaining the integrity of the brand and more on dollar signs and advertising gains, it is easy for a once popular brand to become unrecognizable to previous users. Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer has promised “not to screw it up” when it comes to the acquisition, and says that Yahoo! plans to grow and brand Tumblr separately of itself. While this hasn’t been Yahoo!’s way of doing things in the past, it seems like Mayer has learned from past mistakes, and that Tumblr won’t be turing purple anytime soon.

Do you have a Tumblr blog; will the Yahoo! acquisiton impact you at all? Do you think Yahoo! will maintain the integrity of Tumblr’s brand? Share your thoughts!

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