An App That Encourages Teens To Actually Be Nice To Each Other Has Just Been Bought By Facebook

It’s no secret that the internet can be a cesspit of anonymous trolling and bad behaviour from behind the safety of a computer screen.

So what happens when an app is created purely for people to pay each other compliments? Well, it will be downloaded over 5 million times, have 2.5 million daily users and then be bought by Facebook.

After only nine weeks on the market, one of the biggest players in the tech industry has announced it will be acquiring TBH app – meaning ‘to be honest’ – and the team of four people who run it.

In a longstanding bid to reconnect with a younger audience being lost to Snapchat – industry forecasters predicted Facebook growth among those aged 12 to 17 and 18 to 24 would fall by 2.8% and 3.1% respectively in 2017 – the social network has seized an unmissable opportunity to win over teens.

The app, which is targeted solely towards senior-school-aged children, is centred around emoji-filled quizzes that allow users to swap compliments anonymously.

Users can poll friends on their personality and physical attributes, receiving a stream of nice messages and confidence boosting.

The company’s mission is focused on positivity online: “While the last decade of the Internet has been focused on open communication, the next milestone will be around meeting people’s emotional needs.”

And it seems to be working, given positive feedback on social media.

Creator Nikita Bier told TechCrunch: “If we’re improving the mental health of millions of teens, that’s a success to us.”

In the official announcement, on Monday, Facebook said that meeting with the TBH creators they realised they shared a “common goal” of building community and bringing people closer together through social networking.

According to an official statement the move will not change the standalone user experience for the time being.

Currently it is only available in the USA, with a state-by-state rollout in the last week – but it has been in the Appstore top ten for weeks, including two consecutive weeks at the number one spot.

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