Discussion on: How open-source will Tumblr become?

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Brian Richards

Oh boy! A topic from the area of the Internet where I actually spend my time and can add something to the conversation!

First, here's the best article on the subject. All quotes and insight are sourced first-hand via direct interview with Matt Mullenweg himself: poststatus.com/automattic-has-purc... -- I was present for parts of the conversation that formed this article. It was a special thing to witness!

The biggest questions that I've seen speculated, both here and elsewhere, are, "what are they going to do with it?" I think this article addresses that pretty well.

The most succinct summary:

  1. Move infrastructure off Verizon.
  2. Support same APIs on both WP.com and Tumblr.
  3. [Eventually] Switch backend to be WP.
  4. Open source [the] Tumblr.com client.

To address the title of this post, "how open-source will Tumblr become?" I believe the answer is "extremely." Automattic's most central tenet is the freedoms provided by open source.

This is a really beautiful acquisition that I think is going to work out extremely well for everyone on all sides. I can't remember the last time I felt that way about an acquisition, if ever. This one has so many upsides.

Cheers to everyone involved!