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Pornhub wants to buy Tumblr from Verizon and make it NSFW again

  • Pornhub said it is interested in buying the blogging site Tumblr from Verizon.
  • An executive said Pornhub could restore Tumblr to its "former glory" when it was a haven for adult content. 
  • Tumblr banned adult content in December after its once-popular app was banned from the Apple store. 

Pornhub said Thursday it is "extremely interested" in buying Tumblr, a blogging platform once notorious for the pornography it fostered before it banned adult content last year.

"We've long been dismayed that such measures were taken to eradicate erotic communities on the platform, leaving many individuals without an asylum through which they could comfortably peruse adult content," Corey Price, vice president at Pornhub, said in a statement.

The statement follows Wall Street Journal reports that Verizon is looking to offload Tumblr after failing to meet revenue targets. Verizon wound up with Tumblr as part of its acquisition of Yahoo in 2017. Yahoo bought the then-fast-growing blogging platform for $1.1 billion in cash back in 2013.

Verizon and Tumblr did not respond to requests for comment.

"Obvious synergies" between Pornhub and Tumblr 

For Tumblr, a match with Pornhub might actually make for a good fit. It endured customer backlash in December after disappointed users left the site protesting its ban on adult content. Tumblr lost 16 percent of its web traffic in the month following the announcement, according to SimilarWeb, which tracks visits.

Tumblr itself was responding to an industry crackdown on pornographic content. After child pornography was found on the site, Apple removed Tumblr from its app store in November. The app was restored after Tumblr enacted the adult content ban.

However, critics mocked the site after artificial intelligence measures put in place to ban adult content also removed harmless, regular posts. Pornhub similarly ridiculed the ban and invited users to its own website, offering its own social sharing platform as a safe haven for sexual expression.

"There are obvious synergies between the two brands and value Pornhub could derive from Tumblr," Price said. "We're extremely interested in acquiring the platform and are very much looking forward to one day restoring it to its former glory with NSFW content."