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Confessions of a Bing User

Bing Example Wallpaper

Source: Bing Wallpaper Gallery

Somewhere in the heat of the summer of 2013 I switched to using Bing for search, because the results from Google weren’t accurate. My searches in a blend of business and technology were either webspam or advertising – and pertinent sources were often omitted.

Such statements either surprise you like the jolt of touching a hot stove or invoke a belly laugh of disbelief. For sure, there was no press release or evangelizing event about using Bing. Google continues to dominate search, but people are beginning to recognize a dystopian problem.

Do no evil? Since 2005, Google has known that the premise of search results based upon on the number and type of hyper-links was terribly flawed. The mission that used to be about organizing the world’s information had morphed into who paid the most for advertising. Government, education, and news outlets were deemed the most authoritative sources for links to your website. Google search is now “personalized” by government, location, and supposed known habits of browsing customers – except for highest bidder advertisements at the top and right side of the page.

Google recommends webmasters focus on phrases instead of keywords, but don’t always use the same phrases. Maybe you should make your website encrypted and mobile responsive. Links from social media may help or maybe they’ll simply be ignored. Remember that purchasing Google Adwords is always good.

Sarcasm aside, you regularly see websites with more useful information (encrypted and mobile responsive) outranked by advertisers or illicit schemes like paid Wikipedia articles. If the Google search algorithm is so automated, why are tens of thousands of employees needed to massage the results?

Verify information. My concerns are definitely not unique and I freely admit that I’m lazy and don’t yearn to return to 1999. The following are few reasons why I use Bing:

  1. It’s built into Windows 10 and used by both Cortana and Siri.
  2. Bing displays a daily colorful background with your personalized web interests like sports or news at the bottom.
  3. The majority of searches have no ads at the top or right.
  4. Bing rewards your search usage with trivia, points, and prizes.
  5. Search results are not primarily based upon the premise of links, but also predictive decisions and machine learning.

In 2013, BetaNews published This is Why You Dislike Bing. The article points out that Bing search results labeled as Google were preferred because of Google brand bias. The survey was performed by Google owned SurveyMonkey.

There are other search engines to use as counterpoint to Google search results like Duck Duck Go. If you don’t want your browsing tracked, turn on InPrivate Browsing.

Whatever you do, don’t just blindly believe that whatever Google displays for search results is completely reliable.

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