If you happened to see some very out of character posts on your Tumblr dashboard today, or the odd errant tweet concerning Tumblr getting hacked, here’s the explanation. The blogging website was attacked by an “anti-blogging” group who call themselves the GNAA. The G stands for gay, the As stand for Association of America, and the N stands for, well, you read the title of this post, right?
Blogs that became affected by the worm were caused to repeatedly post the same image, a screen cap of some text calling Tumblr users “worthless, contrived, bourgeoisie, self-congratulating,” “emo… self-deprecating, self-indulgent empty husks of human beings” and urging them to commit suicide. Yes, Tumblr users, you are somehow both self-congratulating and self-deprecating. The picture also claims that any attempts to delete the spam posts will cause your entire blog to be deleted.
According to The Guardian, GNAA targeted Tumblr as part of their “anti-blogging” campaign, as they believe that blogs are lowering journalistic standards, and also possibly out of a desire to punish Tumblr for a hole in its security, which, the group’s spokesperson told the Guardian, they contacted Tumblr about “several weeks ago.” Tumblr
In 2007, the GNAA hacked the Obama campaign’s social network and created a parody site that claimed Jewish people were behind 9/11,which CNN erroneously reported as real. GNAA recently convinced several media outlets that people were organizing looting on Twitter during Hurricane Sandy with the hashtag #Sandylootcrew. In November, the group launched an attack on male My Little Pony fans with a “War on Bronies”.
For anyone affected by the worm, BuzzFeed advises folks to simply delete all of the spam posts. Contrary to statements in the spam picture, it won’t cause your blog to be deleted. Then, of course, change your password as a precaution. As for how to not get infected in the first place, they recommend staying on your dashboard, or logging out of Tumblr before visiting the pages of individual Tumbler blogs. At this point, those precautions may be moot: Tumblr announced that they had resolved the issue that affected “a few thousand Tumblr blogs” (including USA Today, Entertainment Weekly, and other big names).
UPDATE: Tumblr staff has given an update on the situation.
This morning, some of you may have noticed a spam post appearing repeatedly on your Dashboard and on the blogs of a few thousand affected accounts. We quickly identified the source, removed the posts, and restored service to normal.
No accounts have been compromised, and you don’t need to take any further action.
Our sincere apologies for the inconvenience. As always, we are going to great lengths to make sure this type of abuse does not happen again.