You might not have heard of IAC (also known as InterActiveCorp) but between Vimeo, Tinder, Dictionary.com, OKCupid and UrbanSpoon, you've almost definitely
used one of the services it owns. Now it looks like that stable just got a little bigger: the Barry Diller-owned company has just acquired
Latvian question-and-answer startup Ask.fm through another web property it owns: Ask.com.
Let's back up for a moment first -- not too familiar with Ask.fm? There's a good chance you wouldn't be if you're well clear of your teenage years -- it's a lot like the Formspring of yore (before it pivoted into something else entirely), with users publicly or anonymously peppering each other with questions. Considering the sort of primal human jerkitude that seems to emerge when you anonymize someone, Ask.fm has caught plenty of flack for being a hotspot for online bullying and harassment. During its darkest hours, the site was connected to a slew of teenage suicides in the UK and Italy. Shortly after the deal was announced, though, Ask.fm confirmed it'd work with the New York and Maryland attorneys general to address the bullying on the site
by reviewing complaints more frequently and removing troublesome users.
Now that the company's started trying to clean up its image, what's next for it? It looks like the deal was meant to give Ask.com a foothold in the social networking realm, though the BBC reports that talks first began because Ask.com was worried about the startup mucking with its brand. Exactly how that sort of synergy's going to work remains a mystery for now, though TechCrunch adds that the Ask.com and Ask.fm products aren't going to actually merge just yet.