You would be forgiven if you have no idea what Lifestage is, particularly since the app was not update for several months prior to its removal. In a nutshell, Lifestage was Facebook’s dedicated social network for high school students that allowed them to create profiles with photos and videos. If 20 or more people from your school created a Lifestage profile, that school would be “unlocked,” which then allowed you to discover video profiles created by others in your school.
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Created by then-20-year-old Facebook employee Michael Sayman, Lifestage was so focused on the high school crowd that it did not allow folks over 21 years old to see other people’s profiles or add themselves to a listed high school. Unfortunately, it was very easy to just enter a fake age, which understandably led to concerns over privacy.
It also did not help that Facebook warned that everything you posted in Lifestage would be public and viewable by everyone, regardless of whether they attend your school or not. Finally, there was no way to limit who saw your videos, so whatever you posted was fully public.
Perhaps it was because of those privacy concerns, or because not that many people used Lifestage to begin with, that Facebook shuttered the app. Regardless of the reason, Facebook said that feedback it received about Lifestage informed the social network’s other products, like the main Facebook and Instagram apps:
We originally launched Lifestage to make it easier for teens in the US to connect with others at their school by creating a video profile with content for all of things that make up their identity. Teens continue to make up an important part of the global community on Facebook, and we’ve learned a lot from Lifestage. We will continue to incorporate these learnings into features in the main Facebook app.
Lifestage first launched on the iOS App Store before making its way to the Play Store, though the app did not gain much traction on either storefront. As such, we doubt many people will shed tears over its removal, seeing how Snapchat and others are already popular with high school students.