Well, that didn’t take long. Tumblr announced a major change to its platform Monday — the wholesale banning of adult content starting in two weeks — and by Tuesday morning, a quarter of a million people and counting had added their names to a Change.org petition opposing the move.

In fact, according to Change.org, the petition over the ban — which was started by an NSFW adult artist named S.S. — is the third most popular petition this week in the US. It garnered more than 215,000 signatures in its first 24 hours alone.

In Tumblr’s announcement about the change Monday, the company said it was taking a stand to build “a better, more positive Tumblr.” This, of course, belies the fact that adult-related content comprises a significant chunk of what’s available across the platform. Twitter, as you can imagine, also lit up instantly in reaction to the ban with lots of snarky tweets arguing that porn is essentially Tumblr’s bread and butter, and the Change.org petition tries to make that same case:

“Let people post porn,” it reads. “It’s 90% of the reason anybody is on the site in the first place.”

Continues “S.S.” via the petition: “I’m a NSFW tumblr artist who has the vast majority of their viewership (and thus, potential for income from commissions and such) on Tumblr. With tumblr being taken down, a LARGE portion of my viewerbase will go with it, and not only will this hurt people like myself, who rely on this income to live, but it will also mean the people who DO want to view that content no longer get it.”

Tumblr’s company blog post yesterday about the news includes references to very narrow allowable exceptions, such as images related to breastfeeding. The company also says it’s not going to take down the blogs that include adult content — those blogs will just have to shift to posting permitted content going forward.

Among some of the statements included by signers in support of the Change.org petition:

  • “I’m signing for the artists. Let their creativity have an outlet and reach their fans and inspire artists to not be afraid to express themselves. Tumblr was about accepting and sharing the creations from the different fandoms, no matter the content,” writes Jessica Harper.
  • “It’s wrong for Tumblr to just suddenly nuke half of its user base all because they’re too incompetent to actually get the porn bots under control without nuking actual non-porn but blogs,” writes Greyson Harris.
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