Facebook will be launching a brand new dating app, reports The Guardian. Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, just announced the news at an annual developer conference and tongues are wagging. 

If you’re worried this will just be another way for icky strangers to try and get into your pants, Zuckerberg said the new dating feature aims to help build “real long-term relationships – not just hookups”.

Mmmm, but how?

“We want Facebook to be somewhere where you can start meaningful relationships. We’ve designed this with privacy and safety in mind from the beginning,” said Zuckerberg.

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It has, of course, attracted the most attention from the listening crowd even though the bulk of the short speech was about the company’s privacy scandal. 

The chief product officer, Chris Cox, said that the new dating feature would be safe and an opt-in option for users and that the company has taken advantage of this unique platform and data base. 

I suppose having one more app out there to compete with the likes of Bumble, OKCupid and Tinder couldn’t hurt, especially if Facebook says it will be safe. 

But then on the other hand, do we really need it? Aren’t there enough dating apps out there? And also how exactly is Facebook going to make sure that these relationships are 'meaningful' and that things don't lead to just hookups?

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As someone who spent about two years on dating apps and actually found her partner on one, I doubt very much Facebook will be able to do anything about hookup culture... but there could probably be quite a few meaningful relationships coming out of this anyway. I mean I know of people who've started dating because they met on Facebook, so the next logical step seems to be to make a dating app specifically for that purpose. 

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Plus, this is a really smart way to detract from the whole privacy scandal thing. 

I was amused by the news, so I went to see what the people on Twitter were saying and I wasn’t disappointed. 

Only time will tell if the Facebook dating app will be a success, but it doesn't mean that there won't be shade thrown in the meantime. This is a statement from Mandy Ginsberg, CEO of Match.com.

Will you be using the new Facebook dating app once it launches? Tell us on Facebook or Twitter. 

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