David Karp, founder and chief executive officer of Tumblr, criticized Twitter during the Cannes Lions Festival on Thursday. He described Twitter’s practice of displaying the number of followers for every tweeter as “really gross.”


“We don’t share your stats; we don’t share your followers. Your performance isn’t published out to the world. There’s no shame about having only 2000 followers which I always thought was pretty gross on other sites.”

According to Karp, with Tumblr, users will not feel any sense of shame even if they try something small or experimental. He emphasized, “Tumblr is not defined by the people you know,” but it is “defined by the stuff you love”.

Tumblr Takes Aim at ‘Drive By Nastiness’

He added that his team in trying to make Tumblr a positive environment for users because they understand the negative impacts of negative comments by jerks online. He said, “You don’t want people to be scared off by jerks…it’s very hard when you have comments underneath every video from jerks—it really hurts.”

He added, “It really sucks when you’ve poured your heart into something to be called ‘fat’ by jerks on the Internet.” According to Karp, his blogging website does not allow drive-by nastiness. “We’ve take a lot of work making Tumblr a nice environment.”

Karp said that Tumblr allows users to “like” a blog post, but they cannot post impolite comments on the page of a fellow user. However, a user has the liberty to write something about a particular person on his or her own personal page.

“When I am saying anything about you, I’m saying it on my page. If I’m being a jerk, I am being a jerk—but your page can be pristine,” said Karp.

Tumblr Has Protections Against Sexually ‘Yucky’ Content

With regard to criticism against Tumblr that the blogging site has too much sexually explicit content, Karp emphasized that the company invested in opt-in protective measures to protect young or underage users. He said, “If you’re a 14-old kid, you’re not going to run into that yucky stuff.”

Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) announced yesterday that the transaction to acquire Tumblr for $1.1 billion has been completed. Karp vowed that he would continue to run the blogging site as a welcoming place for aspiring kids who can share photos, creativity, and award winning campaigns.