Updated · May 20, 2022
DuckDuckGo Will Down-Rank Spread of Russian Misinformation
Updated · Mar 11, 2022
Users of the search engine are not particularly enthusiastic about the information disclosed by DuckDuckGo’s chief executive.
Tanking Russian-Sponsored Misinformation
The search engine DuckDuckGo will now down-rank websites that participate in the spread of Russian misinformation and propaganda.
Like so many others I am sickened by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the gigantic humanitarian crisis it continues to create. #StandWithUkraine️— Gabriel Weinberg (@yegg) March 10, 2022
At DuckDuckGo, we've been rolling out search updates that down-rank sites associated with Russian disinformation.
According to Weinberg’s tweets, DuckDuckGo’s new updates will downrank sites that play a part in sharing Russian misinformation. The company did not elaborate on the processes involved.
Earlier this month, DuckDuckGo announced a “pause” to its relationship with Yandex, Russia’s biggest internet search engine. Now, it will join tech giants like Facebook, Google, and Twitter in taking measures to curb propaganda relating to the invasion. Twitter, for instance, removes or places warning labels on tweets associated with Russian state media.
DuckDuckGo, a popular search and browsing option for privacy-focused users, does not track users or sell their data. Instead, it funds its operations with money generated from non-targeted ads and affiliate links.
The decision has so far garnered overwhelmingly critical reactions from its users. Some replies to the search engine’s tweet questioned the motive for the move, calling it a departure from DuckDuckGo’s “unbiased” policy. In addition, some users threatened to dump the search company.
Responding to criticism that the move counters the point of the search engine, Weinberg said that privacy remains its point.
The whole point of DuckDuckGo is privacy. The whole point of the search engine is to show more relevant content over less relevant content, and that is what we continue to do.— Gabriel Weinberg (@yegg) March 10, 2022
Daniel is an Economics grad who fell in love with tech. His love for books and reading pushed him into picking up the pen - and keyboard. Also a data analyst, he's taking that leap into data science and machine learning. When not writing or studying, chances are that you'll catch him watching football or face-deep in an epic fantasy novel.
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