Ad Encyclopaedia Britannica 05 1913

Picture from Wikimedia Commons.


General information

A small list of search engines. These are my preferred ones. There are many more, but these I find most usable.
In 1996 when I first started this listing, the search engine market hadn't quite settled yet, today - you have to consider your privacy when using a search engine.


Ad tracking

Today, ad-tracking is an issue. Google for example uses its ad network to server customized ads to all it's users, depending on your previous search history, your interests as specified on the social media sites you visit and so on.
In many cases this may be practical, but keep in mind that on the internet everything you do is remembered for posterity.
Read more about ad tracking on
Information about opting out of Google's personalized ads can be found at


Ad blocking

This is controversial. Companies runs ad campaigns, while the end-users try to block them.
Ad blocking is at this time almost a must unfortunately. There is so much of it, it tends to disrupt any web browsing IMO.


Desktop web browsers

To counter this disruption, one may install an extension in your web browser of preference. The two most common web browser stores listed below.
Google Chrome has its extension store
Mozilla Firefox has its extension store (they call the extensions "addons") at

My desktop web browser of choice is Google Chrome and the ad blocking extension I use is the acclaimed uBlock Origin.
Add a few blocklists and you'll have a cleaner and faster web browsing experience instantly.
uBlock Origin is available for most of the popular desktop web browsers.


Mobile web browsers

My mobile phone is an Android and given the limited data plan I have, I don't want to spend it on downloading ads, obviously. So, I really need an adblocker on my phone as well, and a good one at that.

While I used rooted phones, I tended to use Adaway.

I now usually run unrooted devices, as most of the features I wanted with a rooted phone are now builtin the Android OS, at least it is on OxygenOS on my current Oneplus 8 Pro.
Running rootless adblocking is a little bit of a hoop, but entirely doable. The common thing to do is to use a local VPN solution that serves as the ad blocking service together with a few blocklists.

I currently use Blokada on my mobile phone.

I've used DNS66 on and off on occasion when Blokada didn't perform well enough or had released a buggy version. Note that DNS66 isn't available on Google Play Store as it violates some or other adblocking agreements and Google is the world's greatest ad service provider.
It is however available on, the FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) platform.

Both Blokada and DNS66 are VPN-based solutions and work very well in my experience. They don't catch all ads, but then what adblocker does that?


Privacy in the EU

In the EU, there are however laws that guarantees your right to be forgotten.
Read more about that at


Vaguely related stuff

"If you are not paying for it, you're not the customer; you're the product being sold"
Source is disputed.
This post from 2010 is considered to be the original;
But this one is said to have introduced the concept in the 70s;


Search engines

Privacy emphasizing search engines

No, trackers, no ads, all users see the same search results.
Some years later, "people" argue that DuckDuckGo has somewhat sold out to the "man" and now allows a level, albeit low, of tracking.
A few points of view can be found here; as well as here;

The DuckDuckGo search engine can be found at


"Regular" search Engines

A search engine searches through a single database as opposed to a metasearch engine. Different users will see different search results.

The most well-known is Google and can be found here;









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