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Facebook Works on Updating 'Messenger Kids App'

Facebook Works on Updating 'Messenger Kids App'

Tuesday, 12 February, 2019 - 08:00
In this Feb. 16, 2018, file photo, Facebook's Messenger Kids app is displayed on an iPhone in New York. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)
London - Asharq Al-Awsat
After shutting down its teen app dubbed "Meme", Facebook announced it is currently focusing efforts on its instant messaging app "Messenger Kids."

The US platform said it's not interested anymore in providing the "Meme" app targeting students, and that it will focus on updating the instant messaging app targeting kids under 13.

It is worth noting that the term "Meme" refers to an idea, behavior, or style that spread in a culture and often aims at sharing a certain phenomenon or meaning.

According to the Recode website, Facebook has restructured its "youth team", the organization of more than 100 employees specifically tasked with building products and features for young people.

The company's spokesperson said in a statement that " the youth team has restructured in order to match top business priorities, including increasing our investment in Messenger Kids," the German News Agency reported.

Facebook launched the Messenger Kids application in December 2017, giving children a mean to chat with their friends and family members without ads. Meanwhile, children's advocacy organizations warn that this app may lead to depression and unhealthy sleep habits among children and reduce their self-esteem.

These organizations, including the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, urge Facebook to stop the "Kids Messenger" app, but the company says the application does no harm to children.

The website reported that Facebook, like other major technology companies, is trying to attract teenagers and kids to its platforms and compete with other apps such as Snapchat, noting that despite teenagers do not spend too much time using social media, they will form an important audience for these companies in the future.

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