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:
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.
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.