BBC Launches New Ad/Porn-Free Web Search
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The venerable British Broadcasting Company has launched a new, UK-centric search engine that the broadcaster promises to be "free from commercial pressures and safe from undesirable sites." The new BBCi search engine allows users to search the site's entire database of web pages from around the world. Clicking one button, users can narrow their results only to UK sites (another click returns to results from sites around the world). Additionally, the site automatically filters out, what it calls "pornographic/derogatory sites."

The Associated Press reports that the site uses a combination of Google search technology and technology developed by the BBC (presumably the filtering technology). A search for "free public records" on both Google and BBCi returned nearly identical results on the first page (of 168,000 pages). Clicking BBCi's "Show Me UK Results Only" button did focus the results on UK-based web sites, but strangely INCREASED the number of results to 180,000 pages.

In part, the new site comes in response to a recent survey [in the U.K.] in which 64% of respondents reported becoming "frustrated by the amount of American websites and advertisers they came across whilst searching on the web."

"Given that 90% of respondents to the independent survey stated ...they would prefer impartial search, it is evidently something that people want," said Ashley Highfield, Director, BBC New Media.

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