Can You Make YouTube Songs Audio Posts on Tumblr?

By John Lister

Music files can liven up your Tumblr.
i Andrew Burton/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Although Tumblr is technically a blogging site, many people use it solely or mainly for posting media files such as pictures and videos rather than text posts. While you cannot post YouTube videos as audio posts on Tumblr, you can embed a YouTube video on Tumblr and customize the way it appears, so that your blog visitors can play back the music without being distracted by the video.

Getting Embed Information

To get the necessary information from YouTube, visit the clip on YouTube, click on "Share," and then click on "Embed." To control the size at which the clip will appear on Tumblr, change the setting next to "Video size." When done, click in the text box that contains the code, press "Ctrl-A" to select the code, and the press "Ctrl-C" to copy it.

Embedding in Tumblr

Open Tumblr in your browser, log in to your account, and then click on "Video." Click in the box with the text "Embed code or video URL," and then press "Ctrl-V" to paste the code from YouTube, replacing the numbers in quotation marks next to "height=" with 25; note that this information appears twice, and you must change both to 25. When done, click on "Post."

How It Works

By manually altering the height of the video to 25, you ensure that the embedded video is big enough for the playback controls to be viewable and usable. However, the video itself will either be invisible or so small as to be barely visible and easy to ignore. Using a smaller height than 25 may make it impossible to start playing the video or may make it appear at its full, original size.

Legal Issues

When you post a YouTube clip on Tumblr, you are not technically replicating the clip. Instead, you are embedding it, which is a form of link in which the clip plays from YouTube but appears as if it were part of your Tumblr page. This means you don't create any additional legal issues in posting a music clip. Remember, though, that posting the clip on Tumblr may draw more attention to the YouTube video and increase the chances of it being removed if it contains copyrighted music that was posted on YouTube without permission.

Uploading to Tumblr

It is technically possible to upload a file to Tumblr rather than embed it. You could, using third-party software, download a clip from YouTube and upload it to Tumblr as a video, or extract the music and upload it as an audio file. However, this is generally a bad idea. If you are the original YouTube uploader, embedding is better as any views on your Tumblr page will count towards your YouTube total and may help with any advertising revenue you get from YouTube. If you are not the original YouTube uploader, both downloading the clip and uploading it to Tumblr are likely to breach copyright. This may carry a particularly high risk of legal problems if the clip contains commercially released music.