Facebook reportedly demonstrated ‘informal interest’ in buying the company that made HQ Trivia but backed off after reports of ‘creepy’ behavior from its late co-founder (FB)

Facebook at one point demonstrated “informal interest” in buying Intermedia Labs, the company responsible for the game-show app HQ Trivia, The Wall Street Journal reports.

But Facebook’s interest reportedly waned after Recode published an article describing allegations of inappropriate behavior by Intermedia Labs co-founder Colin Kroll during his time working for Twitter. Kroll died of a drug overdose in 2018.

Facebook and Intermedia Labs did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s requests for comment.

Read more: HQ Trivia and Vine cofounder Colin Kroll was a talented but tough boss who had a history of clashes with staff

The Recode article, published in December 2017, said many venture capitalists did not want to invest in Intermedia Labs due to concerns about Kroll’s behavior at Twitter. (Kroll co-founded the now-defunct six-second video app Vine, which was acquired by Twitter in 2012.) Recode reported that Kroll had been fired from Twitter due to his poor management skills and had developed a reputation at the company for acting in a “creepy” manner toward women. An internal investigation at Twitter determined that he was not guilty of sexual harassment, but had “created a hostile work environment,” according to The Wall Street Journal.

HQ Trivia raised a $15 million round led by Peter Thiel’s Founder’s Fund that it announced in March 2018. It was reported that at the time, the company’s valuation exceeded $100 million.

Since that time, when the company was at it’s most prominent, its star has seemingly faded. As Recode reported in a November 2018 piece, HQ Trivia held the spot for the second highest number of monthly downloads in February 2018. By November, it had sunk to number 253.

In 2018, Facebook rolled out features that allow publishers to create game shows that stream on Facebook Live.

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