Multiple Choice in Search
Posted: 16 September 2021
Once upon a time search was a web service relatively independent of browsers. We nudged ourselves to switch between web-sites offering search. Then Google came along with their brilliant and simple web search service. They cleverly nudged us into new habits. And like every empire they built defensive walls; most obviously with the Chrome browser, then Android. With Chrome they changed habits and made the browser URL box also the search box. You probably thought that was very convenient. It was, but it was also slight of hand; aka nudge.
Posted: 11 August 2021
Last week Apple announced that it would soon roll out CSAM (Child Sexual Abuse Material) photo detection on iCloud Photos, with the capability to do this on the mobile devices in the future. The stated objective is the unarguable and well-meaning objective of tackling child porn sexual abuse problems. Nevertheless this sudden, surprising announcement was met with a great deal of concern from privacy campaigners, organisations, academics, security experts and lawyers. Many people, and notably world experts, see the backdoor that this opens to mobile devices as a slippery slope towards distributed surveillance.
Online Safety: Our Feedback to Government
Posted: 03 August 2021
The UK Government published its draft Online Safety Bill in May 2021. Much has been written since but virtually all of it has been about social media; that being itself a subset of the category called “user-to-user services” defined in the Bill. Services such as Facebook, Twitter, Reddit and YouTube are no doubt targets to be regulated. But we should also expect Mumsnet, Element, Substack, to mention a few of an expected ~24,000 businesses, to become regulated by Ofcom. We are openly publishing here our response to the DCMS consultation exercise. It is very important to note that for “search services”, a duty of care is required only for harmful to children content. User-to-user services, for example social media, will have a duty of care for content which is deemed harmful to adults and children.
An Open Letter to Sundar Pichai
Posted: 13 July 2021
Dear Sundar, On TV last night, I watched your interview with the BBC, which is now available on BBC iPlayer and Sounds. The stories are nice, the questions were great, and it was entertaining. But for progress we need the right actions, which is why I am writing to you today.
Time to Ban Surveillance-Based Advertising
Posted: 07 July 2021
Recently, the Norwegian Consumer Council published a report calling for a ban on surveillance-based ads. In solidarity, we the undersigned will be sending the following letter on Wednesday, July 7th, to EU and US regulators to encourage them to take action during legislative sessions and any relevant privacy discussions.
Mojeek Reaches the 4 Billion Page Milestone
Posted: 28 June 2021
At the time of writing the English-language sections of Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, comprise 6,322,101 pages. We have a habit of using Wikipedia as a way of helping to contextualise the size of the Mojeek index both because of the importance that it puts on free and open access to information, and because it’s very difficult to hold an idea as lofty as there being 4 billion of anything in your head without an understandable comparison. With the help of this imagery we are happy to announce that Mojeek is now more than 630 English-language-Wikipedias large.
Mojeek App Improvements
Posted: 26 May 2021
Apple’s new privacy labels meant that we had to recently revisit our Mojeek app in order to comply with new App Store rules; needless to say, filling out the “Data You Collect” part of this process was pretty easy. We decided to take this opportunity to improve the Mojeek App. Previously the Mojeek App provided a quick way of getting to the Mojeek Homepage and undertaking a search, but when clicking on one of the search results the seeker was sent to their default browser in order to continue their journey.
No-Tracking Search, How Does it Work?
Posted: 04 May 2021
Mojeek is one of seven international real web search engines and the only one outside of USA, Russia, and China. As the only one of those that does not track, Mojeek offers unique and important benefits to its global users. Search with surveillance was born in Silicon Valley and flowers in Russia and China. Search without surveillance was born in the UK, at Mojeek, in 2006. Here is the Mojeek perspective on search engines really work and what goes into building a real search engine.