The Science Side of Tumblr

The Science Side of Tumblr

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The Science Side of Tumblr is a slang expression used on the popular microblogging site to request a scientific explanation for an inexplicable phenomenon from the scientifically literate population within the community. However, due to its increasingly indiscriminate usage by the userbase at large, the term has since become more closely associated with the concept of troll science.


The earliest known reference to the phrase can be found on the eponymous Tumblr blog The Science Side of Tumblr, blog [3] which was launched on April 9th, 2013 with a GIF post calling on the “science side of Tumblr” to explain the phenomenon of a slowly freezing soap bubble (shown below). Within its first year, the post gained more than 520,000 notes.


References to the science side of Tumblr collected slowly in 2013, with dunkindont’s[5] post featuring a dog scientist, which was posted on November 11th, 2013, gaining over 22,000 notes and marauders4evr’s[4] post on 3D geometrical GIFs, which was posted on August 14th, 2013, gaining over 100 notes as of April 2014.

Sometimes questions posed to the science side of Tumblr are asked in jest, like robocozz’s[6] post which asks, “quick science side of tumblr why am i ugly,” and zofia-and-sloths’[10] post which asks, “science side of tumblr why does nobody love me?” Both posts where published on December 29th, 2013, with robocozz’s post gaining over 72,000 notes and zofia-and-sloths’ post gaining over 17,000 notes as of April 2014.

The Tumblr blog The-Science-Side-of-Tumblr[1], which collects images and GIFs with explanations from the science side of Tumblr, published its first post on January 11th, 2014.

In 2014, there were more than seven unique instances of posts which referenced the science side of Tumblr that accrued at least 1,000 notes including social-justice-wario’s[7] post on memes, 2000yr’s[8] post questioning the existence of the science side of Tumblr and skinjacket’s[9] post on an animated dancing whale.

The first Urban Dictionary[2] entry for the Science Side of Tumblr was submitted on February 14th, 2014, by user Star Stuff who defined it as:

“a small part of tumblr made up of intellectuals that doesn’t spend their time obsessing over fandoms or bands and instead tries to keep themselves scientifically literate by reading scientific articles and wants every body to be educated and care about science.”

Notable Examples

Search Interest

External References

[1]Tumblr – The Science Side of Tumblr

[2]Urban Dictionary – Science Side of Tumblr

[3]Tumblr – thesciencesideoftumbir

[4]Tumblr – marauders4evr

[5]Tumblr – dunkindont

[6]Tumblr – robocozz

[7]Tumblr – social-justice-wario

[8]Tumblr – 2000yr

[9]Tumblr – skinjacket

[10]Tumblr – zofia-and-sloths

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