I started using duckduckgo about ten years ago and have evangelized it ever since, including on devrant, but I think I've just about had it with it. Let me explain.

I was more than happy to accept the less-than-google results for standard searches, because I could force the site to only show me results that matched an exact string if I put quotes around it, or force the results to include or exclude results with words with minus or plus characters before them.

But that's all gone now. Now, plus just means, "show me more results with this word," and minus means, "show me fewer results with this word." Wrapping a string in quotes doesn't mean you require anything exact anymore. The name of the game with DDG now is the same as Google: engagement. Narrowed results or fewer results means less chance of clickthroughs, and you can't sell ads that way.

For normal searches, I'm off duckduckgo. It makes me sad.

Let me clarify though that DDG's bang searches are still fully functional, and are still an absolutely indispensable part of my workflow. I use them well over a hundred times a day, every day. I updated my rofi script for web searches to use qwant, but still go to DDG if the search string begins with a bang.

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