Stay strong and resist the force!

DuckDuckGo works pretty well. Not as good as google but a very good alternative to them. I started my google free life a couple of days ago using FP Open OS without gapps and deleting my google account switching from gmail which I have been using for years to my own email

So far so good! I haven’t missed google a second.


Well, Ecosia uses Bing, but there is an option in the settings to use Google search engine instead. It doesn’t get Ecosia money from the ads, but your search is supposed to be more ecological (something with Ecosia being carbon-neutral I guess, I couldn’t find any information about that). I don’t really know what to think about Ecosia: sounds nice, but not easy to find precise information.

They use the money generated from the ads and plant trees with it. I think it’s quite well explained here.


I actually can not say much about the quality of Google services, simply because I hardly ever used any (due to no need), but I think particularly the search engine, which you brought up, is a good example where I have to disagree.
Working as a researcher I often use search engines to get further with my work. The problem with Google’s is that it always filters your search through your previous searches, so you are basically stuck in a filter bubble. This may be convenient in some cases, like if you want to look up again the great pizza place you found the other day, but if you want to actually discover new things, learn more, or widen your horizon with the support of online search, then Google actually offers a poor algorithm and thus poor choice in regard of quality.

5 Likes :wink:

Thank you for bringing that great explanation!


Well, actually, it is explained in quite a simple way. Easy to understand, but when you try to know a bit more, it is hard to find answers.
As explained, I checked the settings and discovered that you can use Ecosia with Google search engine. I wanted to know more about that, but couldn’t get much information. They don’t get money to plant trees when you search with Google search engine instead of Bing. So why search with Google search engine on Ecosia? If they give you this possibility, I guess that you/they have something to earn, but what? I have read somewhere (not on Ecosia’s website) that the search is greener because the energy comes from renewable sources, but Google also claims that they are carbon neutral since 2007.
So in conclusion: I love the idea and I guess that you don’t have much to loose if you like Bing. But my question is: if you are used to Google search engine, is there a reason to use Ecosia?

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Google is anti-non/low-profit - which is why Google doesn’t allow Ecosia to donate money generated through Google searches to good causes.
Ecosia still offers the possibility to search through Google because many people think that Google offers the “best” search results. When you search Goolge via Ecosia you still use Ecosia’s infrastructure and not (so much) Google’s, so Ecosia can guarantee that these searches are CO2 neutral.
That’s about what I read on Ecosia some time ago, dunno if that info is still on the site somewhere.

I didn’t know that - but it’s a difference if you are carbon neutral because you use renewable energy or because you buy certificates.

I agree! Google have some good propaganda on their website:
It sounds pretty good, and as there are big, they can publish big numbers (2.5 gigawatts or renewable energy bought; “our data centers use 50% less energy than the typical data center”, etc.).

I have read somewhere that a Ecosia search uses little energy from Ecosia, but more energy from Bing or Google (as the answers come from their servers).
That’s why I wrote that it is hard to find answers… I don’t have enough background to read between the lines and tell apart what’s really good and what’s pure advertisement!

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Imo, this is - unfortunately - only one - undoubted - part of the truth. Google’s search engine training with the results of my previous search results (that I ranked relevant by following the links) also leads to the fact that - especially if I can’t exactly define what I’m searching for - I receive much more actually relevant results in comparison to any other search engine I used yet. This is often not only a huge time saver but - kind of ironically - sometimes also widening my horizon because I get results (e.g solution hints in cases of problems) that I not even knew I could have searched for.

My personal trade-off: I start searching with a different search engine (usually Ixquick or Startpage); if I don’t find what I was looking for in reasonable time, I continue the search with Google.

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(Shouldn’t we make an “Ecosia - pros and cons” topic about this?)

Ecosia’s financial reports can be found at the Bundesanzeiger, so there’s legitimacy on that part. But their donation receipts and business reports in their dropbox are not really proving anything. They only tell numbers. So you have to reasearch about what “WeForest” is and does and how reliable they are.

I’d like to see some sort of protocols or certifications from reliable organizations (like Greenpeace) which prove that the things they claim to do acutally happen. But I’m not sure up to which point I should inquire and when I should start to trust.


That’s what I do, just that I start off with Ecosia. How great would it be if Ecosia teamed up with DuckDuckGo? :smiley: On the other hand, it seems they donate to open source projects already…

PS.: Here is how DuckDuckGo makes money.


Or get your own meta search engine: I use Searx.

You can use one of the public Searx instances, or grab the code and make your own.


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