We’ve received a number of comments asking about an Internet rumor that Google bought the DuckDuckGo search engine that protects privacy. This is not true. A few years ago, Google bought a company that owned the domain Duck.com, which led to the confusion. DuckDuckGo complained, and Google voluntarily relinquished the domain, which now automatically redirects users to DuckDuckGo.com.
So it appears that DuckDuckGo is still so independent and dedicated to protecting privacy that they are justified in having a welcome mat at their headquarters that reads, “Come Back With A Warrant.” (I’m still disappointed that I didn’t get one of those for Christmas.)
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There’s also some discussion online about Google thinking it’s in their best interests not to try to take over or crush DuckDuckGo or Bing because that gives them some nominal competition to point to when they’re accused of being a monopoly. We’ll see how long that lasts if DuckDuckGo gets so many users that it threatens their monopoly…oops, sorry: I mean, "their business."
Here’s an article about DuckDuckGo from 2019, explaining the differences between the two search engines and why you might prefer DuckDuckGo (aside from the obvious political and “not supporting evil” reasons.)
Another issue we’re getting questions on (and that helped fuel the Google rumor) is that people think they’re seeing more left-leaning results on DuckDuckGo lately. I searched for “impeachment” and got fairly mainstream news stories and definitions from Wikipedia and History.com. A search for “Mike Huckabee” turned up a Fox News article and other benign results. It’s possible that if you see more left-leaning results, it’s because DuckDuckGo sifts through about 400 sources, including the Bing search engine, and there are currently a lot more left-leaning stories so more might turn up on DuckDuckGo, but that’s just a guess. Compare it to Google’s news results and there’s no contest.
Finally, if you want a privacy-protecting browser alternative to DuckDuckGo for some reason, you might try Qwant.com, which is based in France. But DuckDuckGo is NOT owned by Google.