The New Search Privacy Standard

17 comments is a new search privacy standard. The idea is pretty simple, if you include the phrase #privacy at the end of your search query, the search engine should not associate an IP or Cookie-identifying info with that query, nor should that query be included in public keyword suggestion tools. I think most of us here understand the privacy concerns (put your blackhat on and look at the leaked AOL search-data).


This a GREAT idea

but I doubt the search overlords will do it.

You know who should? An engine on the B list. MSN or Ask. Would give a pretty darn sweet pull to them (for a lot of us), plus would get them a ton of news coverage, mindshare and goodwill.

Of course, the Search Gods aren't always as smart as they think they are, so I won't hold my breath ;-)

If enough of us...

Its straight grassroots, if enough of us blog about it, talk about it, spread the word about it, 1 of them will accept it. Once just 1 of them does, the others will follow.

Thanks for the vote of confidence on the idea!

I'M In

Privacy and Security are the two things consumers want most and get least. The issue goes way past the search engines; it is about the opportunity for businesses prosper around giving consumers control of their personal information while still enjoying content.

I am working on a post containing a list of privacy driven business models.

If you have any suggestions, email them (or links to posting) and I will include them.
If you want to include my suggestions in your blog, please link to
If you want to start one of these businesses, let me know...[email


When Aaron launches another linkbaiting FireFox plugin

automating it, I'm sure going to make good use of it. :-)

MSN and Ask

I've always said if those two wanted to grab a little market share, they'd push the privacy thing down our throats in commercials and advertisements. It's a society that can be sold on fear.

Use the monkeys

Ask could use the monkeys to show how vulnerable your privacy is on the other engines.

Theres already a greasemonkey script...

on the PoundPrivacy site.

MSN and Privacy???

Mr.Turner, Microsoft and Privacy don't belong in the same sentence without a negative qualifier.

On the contrary,

I would expect a company like Microsoft to be more willing to accept a privacy standard like this.

Google believes, truly believes, that indexing, organizing, and mobilizing this data is core to their business strategy, while Microsoft considers it ancillary at best.

Why Not Hang A Target On It

Maybe it's just me but isn't this the equivalent of getting out your bright yellow highlighter and fat red pen and isolating and drawing as much attention as possible to something you don't want people to look at? Those searches I make all day I don't care what you do with those but the ones that I tag with a #privacy don't pay attention to those ... really I mean it ... there's nothing special about them ... nope not at all ...

I would have thought that

I would have thought that most people who are fussed about privacy would use the #privacy tag on all of their searches rather than individual ones.

Personally I think it's a fantastic idea and one that the likes of MSN/Ask could potentially benefit from. If there was a lot of buzz about this then there would be a small chance of someone taking notice, but it still seems pretty far fetched.

Oh and mornin' all, this is my first post on TW.

Edit: Russ, your 'get the banner' textbox is sitting right on top of the 'what is #privacy' text in IE7. Thought you might want a heads up.

maybe... even still

> Maybe it's just me but isn't this the equivalent of getting out your bright yellow highlighter and fat red pen and isolating and drawing as much attention as possible to something you don't want people to look at?

Not if 25 million people use it, and they use it on ALL their searches (I'm sure it could be made automatic)

At the very least, even if it didn't accomplish a ton, it would draw attention to the issue for consumers... (maybe we do still have power to stop this slide?)

Dugg it, too

And Dom's right: It's pretty similar to encrypting your mail - either do it all the time (or, where not possible, at
least a significant portion of it), or it'll raise the very red flags you're trying to avoid.

Maybe now my privacy domains

Maybe now my privacy domains will be more attractive in the domains aftermarket.. woohoo.

Digg account banned...

Apparantly Digg did not like the fact that people were digging the story 12 hours after it was posted. Story removed, and my account was banned.

contact me

Russ contact me

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.