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Ask.com Adds Privacy Link To Home Page, Hopes People Care
from its home page, as Yahoo and Microsoft do. Ask.com, apparently hoping to
ride the issue to some consumer gains, has emailed us that it now proudly
sports a privacy link on its home page, along with some new privacy smart
C’mon Google, just add the link — seven letters, PRIVACY, won’t take up
much space. And it will at least stop others from riding you on the issue
this way, even if practically no one will click on the link.
More from the Ask email, below:
An Open Letter to the Web Community and our Users:
Several weeks ago, a group of privacy advocates contacted a major
company in the search marketplace, requesting some key changes to its
conspicuous. This included placing a “Privacy” link directly on the
to the user.
In their June 3rd letter requesting the change, the privacy groups
stated that such a move represents “…a commitment by a commercial website
to inform users about the company’s privacy practices.”
At Ask, we take our commitment to user privacy and data protection very
seriously. We’ve demonstrated this not just through words, but through
deeds and actions. We were the first major search company to announce that
we would be placing privacy tools directly in the hands of our users, as
we said we would do in July 2007. Then, we did it: we launched AskEraser
in December 2007. Ask remains the only major search company to develop and
deploy a privacy protection tool that that empowers web users to make
decisions as to data retention by Ask. The AskEraser tool is right there
on our homepage, a one-step mechanism to deleting a users’ search data
from Ask.com servers.
Now, we’re going several steps further.
a “Privacy” link prominently placed right on our homepage. It is only one
of four non-search related weblinks on our homepage. We’ve also made sure
that the “Privacy” link appears on the landing pages across most of Ask’s
verticals as well, which cover almost all of Ask’s search traffic.
In addition to this important and timely step, Ask has also added a
which is one click off our homepage.
At the same time, we realized we can – and should – do more to inform
our users about the importance of privacy on Ask, and in general on the
web. And we have. We are developing and finalizing two separate Ask “Smart
Answer” search results pages, so when a user goes to Ask.com and types in
“Ask Privacy” or “Privacy” in the search box, they will get served up a
specially designed, robust, and comprehensive results page that is a
one-stop shop of answers on both Ask’s privacy policies and actions
(including AskEraser), as well as on privacy in general.
No one required that we take any of these steps. We took a look at our
webpages, and realized we could make some key improvements when it came to
privacy links on our service. It’s simply the right thing to do for the
information and awareness of our users.
We strongly encourage others in the search marketplace and online
industry to do the same.
By the way, as a result of the change, Ask.com in the UK no longer sports
the Ask.com US link
necessary to get to its US site after it directs you to the UK one. Yes,
being in the UK, I find that annoying.