Google has sacrificed its Search objectivity in favor of self-promotion and skewed pseudo-personalized results, and Ben Brooks has had enough. Ben writes:

If we want Google to stop jacking around our search results then we have to hit them where it hurts: search. That starts with people leaving Google search.

That’s what I am doing.

I wrote the following roughly just over a week ago:

Is it really [going to be] too long before we see articles cropping up touting the popularity of ditching Google? As difficult, impractical, and unrealistic as that might sound, I cannot think of another means for preserving the integrity and relevance of my interactions with the Internet.

Ben provides a great little guide for taking the first steps toward abandoning Google Search, but his information is constrained to LaunchBar and Safari. For me, despite its obvious ties to Google, Chrome is still the most practical browser.

Fortunately, you can easily set DuckDuckGo as your default search engine in Chrome. Simply go to DuckDuckGo.com (or the SSL encrypted version), click "Chrome" at the bottom of the page, and follow the brief instructions. Voila, DuckDuckGo is your default search provider.

Honestly, at the moment, DuckDuckGo doesn't quite hold up to Google Search for me (particularly since yesterday's introduction of the "Don't Be Evil" bookmarklet). But that's a sacrifice I'm willing to make. I don't want to rely on tenuous workarounds to retrieve accurate search results. Furthermore, without supporting alternative search providers like DuckDuckGo, how can we possibly expect them to reach feature parity with juggernauts like Google?

If you're perturbed by Google's extraordinarily flawed decision, I urge you to try out the alternatives. Use DuckDuckGo (or any other for that matter) for a week or so. Allow competitors to prove their viability and willingness to evolve in an increasingly anti-competitive market.

Google's distinct lack of a clear and concise privacy policy is deplorable, and until Google assumes accountability for its actions and privacy policies, I, like Ben, am willing to abandon their core service.

Rather than continuously tempting invasions of privacy, Google must embrace transparency. For an entity with such a high-level of access to our personal information, Google should, by all accounts, have an industry standard-setting privacy policy, certainly not a purposefully vague one. (For context, check out DuckDuckGo's extraordinarily straightforward privacy policy.) If Google can take such steps and clearly reassure its users of the integrity of their information, then Google will have made a case for its lack of "evil" in the marketplace. Otherwise, Google's actions have become irrefutably anti-competitive, invasive, and flawed, and that is simply unacceptable behavior.

As evidenced by the ease of implementation in Google's own browser, it doesn't take much to try out Google's competitors, so why not try out DuckDuckGo for a week or two? It's a worthwhile cause.