Facebook Just Acquired TBH, The Anonymous App Popular With High School Kids

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"We built tbh because we believe that social networks should make us feel better about ourselves—not worse," the company behind the app wrote on its website.

According to the app description, tbh is where users/friends tell you what they like about you and they don't "roast you like other apps." Teens using the app do not communicate directly with each other. It is all done by users sending anonymous messages to each other through a series of polls. Questions in the polls are positive and prompt users to identify their friends with titles like "world's best party planner," "makes you laugh the hardest" or "always knows what to say and when to say it," it was reported on Mashable, a global, multi-platform media and entertainment company.

Users will receive a notification when they are selected in a poll and will earn a "gem." The sender of the poll can reveal their true identity if they choose to do so.

According to the company behind the free app, it keeps their identity a secret but offers clues as to who the friend commenting is, such as if it is a girl or boy and may state which grade they are in. Tbh also only allows users to answer a certain number of polls within a set amount of time. Basically, users can't just answer question after question for an endless amount of time.

Users can also create their own polls, which would have to be approved by the app before they are published. The polls must be appropriate for users ages 12 and up, be "uplifting" and "not offensive to any group," according to the app.

I have two teens and they know nothing of this app, which sounds like it has not made in into the Brainerd lakes area yet. A teen who attends the Pequot Lake High School also never heard of it. Social media giant—Facebook—bought the app and wants it to be the next Instagram. I don't know if that will happen. According to an Oct. 17, 2017, article, tbh had scored 5 million downloads and 2.5 million daily active users in the past nine weeks.

Sarah Porisch, director of technology in the Brainerd School District, said according to the online traffic, students who are using the school's Wi-Fi have not downloaded the app while at school. The district cannot track what students download on their own data.

Porisch said she had to look up the app to see what it was about as she never heard of it. She said the technology department have heard of other similar apps to tbh, but never that particular app.

"There are so many anonymous apps out there and the popularity of one can change in a second. Once a student uses it and tells one student who will tell another student and so on ... There was an app last year that was similar to this one, but the comments were not mediated and was more like cyberbullying."

Porisch said she is concerned with the anonymity of tbh and how users earn "gems" which leads to competition.

"Our kids have enough to worry about," Porisch said of her personal opinion.

The school district teaches students through "Google classrooms," a learning platform, on how to communicate with others in a positive way, how to handle feedback and how to take constructive criticism. Porisch said when you are dealing with an anonymous app there are many concerns on how the student would feel about the comment and how they would handle it if the comment was negative.

"In the Google teaching the kids learn it is OK if they don't agree with someone," Porisch said. "We show them how they can communicate with others in a more effective way."

The reviews on the tbh app are positive, but I couldn't find the dates of when the reviews were written—so that could mean the reviews from the users were from November when the app was last updated. I am not sure. But below are the reviews as written:

• "TBH is a great app because u get to see all the things people love about u and it's anonymous (so u don't feel embarrassed) it's super fun. I love that if u want to k ow who it is u can ask and if the person wants to reveal them selfs they will, I also love the way u can see what other people say about ur friends so u can feel great for them too. The only thing I don't like is that when u go on someone's page there are 3 things that people said about you, but sometimes there not what u want other people to see (for example one of mi e is "can sprint from New York to California" and it's not bad but I just don't want other people to see that) so I think this app should make it that u have a choice if u want it to be on ur top 3. In all tbh is a great app and u should download it."

• "The app is wonderful. It works well and doesn't cause any problems. You don't have to worry about excessive ads. It's fun to use and doesn't try to burn a hole in your pockets."

• "I ABSOLUTELY LOVE this game helps get to know your friends better, maybe confess to your crush, and get gems and not find out who's telling you this stuff. But there are some questions to get you started that are a little bit creepy. It asks you your phone number and your full name and grade and Snapchat. It might just be me but I think that's a little scary. so if your comfortable sharing that that's not my choice and I don't want to stop you from getting this app cause it's amazing...... but I would definitely if your a kid ask an adult first before you get it. but again ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS GAME."

According to a story on Fortune, the app is only available to download on Apple iOS devices, not on Google's Android operating system.

Other similar apps are YikYak, Secret and Sarahah. My suggestion to you is to do your research before downloading any app to make sure it is the right one for you. Teens if you are not sure, I would say just forget it or ask a parent or teacher about it.

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Source : http://www.brainerddispatch.com/business/technology/4387677-tech-savvy-anonymous-app-not-best-tbh-hasnt-made-its-way-lakes-area

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