PHOTO: LIONEL BONAVENTURE/AFP/Getty Images
As a social platform with one of the youngest audiences of any of its competitors, Snapchat has the potential to be abused by bullies or those who wish to influence a younger demographic. With its users’ mental safety in mind, and in honor of Safer Internet Day, Snapchat is launching a new feature called Here For You “that will provide proactive in-app support to Snapchatters who may be experiencing a mental health or emotional crisis, or who may be curious to learn more about these issues and how they can help friends dealing with them.”
The feature, which will roll out over the next months, will provide users with “safety resources” from experts when they attempt to look up topics related to anxiety, depression, stress, grief, suicidal thoughts, and bullying.
“Snapchat was built with privacy at its core — starting with ephemerality — and designed to let people be themselves, without the pressure of being judged by others,” according to the company’s blog post.
This isn’t the first time a social media platform has added tools for mental health, either. Both Instagram and Pinterest launched their own initiatives to promote healthy browsing. Here For You will be available to the first users in a couple weeks. Today, Snapchatters will also be able to engage with Creative Tools and Lenses that promote safety and privacy, which include new Filters and the first-ever Snappable quiz.