The last few months have been a wake-up call for anyone who cares about privacy. But perhaps it’s just been another headline blocking your way to the last round of sports, because I’ll tell you one truth: the generation I’m part of just doesn’t care about privacy. We all knew Google and most free services were grabbing our data and serving us ads. We grew up with that routine, so much so that some of us learned to share online before we got into math. This behavior is so prevalent that the upcoming generations have their fates sealed already, with their pictures being exposed all over the internet sometimes before they’re even born. It’s like The Truman Show, with many, many Trumans.
Yet, I didn’t leave Google due to privacy, I did so because of its use of my private data. Using Google daily and being targeted with its ads is like having a bad fight with your best friend, when he uses your darkest shared secrets against you. After a chain of events, the dismissal of Reader and the new ads in Gmail camouflaged within your inbox, I decided it was time to jump out. That’s what I did and I’m here to tell you how.
Search = Google.com
For most of the world’s internet users, that’s just about it. There’s Google, and nothing else. People even enter Google into the Google search bar in browsers to bring up the Google.com homepage. It’s a mess.
But then, it’s not surprising that Google is so popular, simply because it works great for search. If you need to find something online, you’re almost guaranteed to find it with Google. And when it just works, and is blazing fast, why fix it? There are alternatives, most notably Microsoft’s Bing, which now powers Yahoo! Search as well. There’s also the underdog DuckDuckGo, which has somewhat of a geek following, but doesn’t seem to be that widely used.
I personally still use Google search, after periods of using both Bing, its predecessor, Live Search, and DuckDuckGo. I always end up coming back to Google. That apparently makes me like most of our search visitors, of which 96% use Google to find our articles.
How about you, our faithful readers? What search engine do you use by default? We’d love to hear your thoughts on why you use – or don’t use – Google.
Back in the day, we all used AltaVista or Yahoo! to find everything we needed on the Internet. It was slow and often didn’t find what we were looking for, but hey, it was all we had. Then Google came along, and blew us away at how much faster and better search could really be. We switched, and never looked back.
So isn’t Google good enough? Do we really need another search engine, let alone one named after a game? Let’s take a closer look at today’s search market and what DuckDuckGo has to offer that might make you want to switch. (more…)