I’ve seen and heard many reports of late where a few RPers, some new and some not new, have been pressing their ships on others.
This message is meant to offer guidance on the proper way to approach shipping in the Tumblr RP world.
SO YOU FOUND SOMEONE TO SHIP WITH
You ship it, and another character is the other half of your OTP for your muse. Great!
However, the other Mun:
- may not ship it
- may not know you well enough to instantly ship it, or ship it at all
- may prefer to build a ship rather than simply assuming one
- may not be a multishipper, and may have one of your muse already
- may also may not feel that your version of your muse and their version of theirs are truly compatible
Before you put up a starter or hitting someone’s Askbox referring to your respective characters as married, involved, or otherwise sharing intimate moments, embraces, kisses, etc., ask the Mun if he or she is on board with your plan.
It can also save you time if you read a blog’s ENTIRE Info section. I know, some are long (like mine) but a good blog will offer details involving at least some relevant limits. If you’re in a hurry, use your browser’s Find function (Ctrl-F on your keyboard) to search for keywords like “ship”, “multiship”, or “smut”.
So you’ve got an arrangement to ship, great!
First of all, make sure the person you’re shipping with is interested in smut if that’s where you want to go.
They may prefer the “fade to black” approach, or may not know you well enough to smut your muses. There may be legal impediments to their writing smut with you if you’re under the age of 18.
Check with the other Mun to see what’s on the table. If you’re unsure of legal considerations and are concerned, ask the other mun their age. If their age makes you uncomfortable, say so, and be honest when you say whether you are over 18 or under. I’m a tumblr “Illuminati” (over 25) and am uncomfortable, given the laws in my country, with smutting with an underage person. That’s enough to get me labeled a sex offender!
It may be an impediment for your partner (legal or moral), so be honest and respectful of your partner.
And if your partner says they’re uncomfortable writing smut in general, prefer not to write smut, or are not sufficiently comfortable with you IC and/or OOC to write smut, respect that.
People have a right to refuse RPs and writing topics that make them uncomfortable.
UNSOLICITED ASKBOX SMUT
If someone hasn’t recently (like within 12-24 hours tops) posted a meme looking for smut in their askbox, and you don’t know the mun well enough to know if it’s welcome, DO NOT SEND IT.
If you’ve got an inclination and aren’t sure, ask first. You might have something triggering in your plan. The person may just not be comfortable with getting unsolicited smut.
Sure, a lot of us are dirty buggers who loves us some smut, but send it ONLY if it’s solicited or you know the mun is receptive to getting it.
If smut is solicited in reblogging a meme, it’s fair game, but try to avoid anything too triggering. You wouldn’t want to hurt or upset your prospective partner.
Do try not to shit on anyone else’s ship. You may not ship it but they may either think it’s glorious, or fun, or their OTP. You can say it’s not your cup of tea. You can say “I don’t ship this because ________.” (I often do this with my opinion of the pre-Flashpoint Nightwing/Starfire ship).
In other words, it’s fine to have and express an opinion, but do it respectfullly.
Don’t just say, “Eeeww, Joker/Babs is gross how can you ship that!” (I don’t ship it, but I know of another Babs who did in the course of her RP. She got crap for it constantly.)
Someone’s ship(s) might be considered cracky to you or others. It might be perceived as downright disgusting. It might just plain stretch credulity. But do be respectful.
SAVIOR IS YOUR FRIEND
If you see a particular ship come up on your dash, or RPs which involve someone whose style you heartily dislike, just install Tumblr Savior and put in the relevant blacklist details such as the URLs or keywords. Some of the Tumblr extensions such as xKit also offer blacklisting options.
You can also do this for other triggers you have provided that those you follow tag their posts accordingly.
Tumblr Savior is available for:
Note: Some installations may require or work better with the Greasemonkey extension installed as well as Savior.
YOUR PARTNER LOST THEIR MUSE
This REALLY sucks, dude, and you’ve got my sympathy. Maybe your partner’s muse is generally struggling, or they’re having trouble writing a reply for your thread, or maybe even they’re intimidating by your quality. This one isn’t limited to shipping - it’s more general to any sort of IC interactions in all RP formats and forums.
Don’t fret. It doesn’t mean you suck, or that your partner thinks you suck.
Sometimes a muse will only cooperate with certain threads at a given time, or will lose the muse entirely for a ship or line of character development.
If you think your owed reply is missed, it is acceptable to drop them a line after a few days, particularly if they’re active with other threads. They may have just missed a notification, which tumblr may have eaten.
- Harangue/guilt trip the other mun for failing to reply
- Spam their askbox with more than one note every few days, at most, and only then if they don’t acknowledge your first note (as sometimes tumblr gets hungry and chows down on an ask)
- Seek to publicly humiliate or badmouth the other mun for not replying
- Be accepting of your partner’s challenges with their muse and IRL/AFK
- Be appreciative of the opportunity you’ve had to interact
- Be forthright with your partner(s) if you’re in a position where you’ve lost your muse or otherwise need more time or can’t reply to a thread for a while
Force Shipping = Not Cool
- Talk to your partners if you want to ship before you start sending stuff.
- Know their limits.
- Read their ENTIRE info page so you know what their limits are. If you can’t find one, ask for a link.
- Don’t assume your partner(s) are willing to write smut with you.
- Be willing to ask your partner(s) their age if the possibility of underage smutting is not acceptable to you
- Accept if people are uncomfortable writing smut (with others, with you, or in general)
- Don’t assume your partner(s) looking for smut if they haven’t asked for it or you don’t have a strong sense that they’re willing to accept unsolicited smut.
- Don’t rip on others’ ships.
- If you don’t ship it, be respectful when you say so.
- Use Savior to avoid triggering content and RPs which are likely to annoy/trigger you.
- Accept that muses sometimes don’t cooperate
- Be kind to and appreciative of your partners
FINALLY…HAVE FUN, BUT MAKE SURE YOUR FUN ISN’T DISRESPECTFUL TO OTHER MUNS’ LIMITS OR ENJOYMENT.