Breaking: White House Tumblr says it's GIF, with a 'hard G'

The new Tumblr account for 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. takes a bold stand on the pronunciation of the famed acronym. Are you with the Obama administration on this one?

Leslie Katz Former Culture Editor
Leslie Katz led a team that explored the intersection of tech and culture, plus all manner of awe-inspiring science, from space to AI and archaeology. When she's not smithing words, she's probably playing online word games, tending to her garden or referring to herself in the third person.
  • Third place film critic, 2021 LA Press Club National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards
Leslie Katz
2 min read

The first post on the White House's official new Tumblr boldly tackles a topic sure to inspire as much debate in certain circles as immigration reform, tax cuts, and gun control -- the pronunciation of "GIF."

I, being the softie that I am, have always pronounced the acronym for Graphical Interchange Format "jif" (it sounds more French), but the White House informs me I am wrong and may be declared an enemy of the state. "Hard G," it declares on a graphic (or is that jraffic?) previewing the kinds of content we should expect to see on the new Tumblr -- everything from behind-the-scenes photos to updates on policy and First Dog Bo (and, presumably, Bo's take on policy updates).

And because a Tumblr without them wouldn't be worth its weight in dancing cats, "yes, of course there will be GIFs," it says.

While other Tumblr accounts, such as Organizing for Action, already rally the digital troops in favor of White House policy, this Tumblr will officially Tumble for 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

"We want to see what you have to share: Questions you have for the White House, stories of what a policy like immigration reform means to you, or ways we can improve our Tumbling," the first entry reads. "We're new here, and we're all ears."

The White House -- which already and -- has had a banner week for social networking. On Monday, it posted its starring LeVar Burton and Bill Nye the Science Guy. And now, this...

But the real news here is the Obama administration finally staking a position on GIF. Do you agree with the stand, geeks and jeeks? Vote in our poll. And be sure to watch the 404 Podcast gang debate this very topic in the video below.