National Search Engine: The Argument
Ask yourself, where do you go to search for services, products or information? The most likely answer will be Google. Within the UK, it is estimated they deliver 90% of all search enquires. This domination should be admired, the brand of Google is so strong, that brand terminology is even used within encyclopaedias as if part of the English language. Most other types of business would never be allowed to have 90% of the market.
But within this domination lies a problem, in my eyes a pretty serious one.
It means that all UK businesses, including local businesses, manufacturers, high street brands, banks, insurance, holidays the list goes on and on, all rely on the Google algorithm to be found. Remember Google is estimated to have 90% of all search within the UK, so if any business relies on any online business, it has to abide by Googles algorithm.
What Is The Google Algorithm?
It is the data science between whether a website will rank for a search term or not. The problem is Google strives for better search results, the processes of ranking tends to side with corporations who have the money to give Google more of what it wants to rank.
This means that Google does not serve British businesses, it is in fact the other way around, “websites have to serve Google” where businesses need too invest time and money to adhere to an algorithm that is decided by an American corporation thousands of miles away.
British business should never be controlled by one foreign corporation.
We are continuously reminded of examples where companies have folded, due to their poor online presence.
We Need A Dedicated National Search Engine
So suppose there was a British search engine, whose job is to promote UK business,
- Where no international results are listed and makes it easier for the results to be found.
- Where any income from “Pay Per Click” adverts stays within the British tax system and not Ireland.
- Where only businesses that have a British address will be listed.
- Where no third party data can be collected on searches, including data points for us or our children.
I want to make this clear, the term National Search engine is not political in any way, and hopefully will be supported by all parties.
Google would still exist and be the chosen search engine for many, but having an alternative can only be a positive step.
Why Private Competition Wouldn’t Work
Of course this cannot be run by a private company, Google would destroy its popularity before it got off the ground, even the might of Microsoft, has not been able to give adequate competition in the UK.
This needs to be a Government project, sponsored by them to gain the trust that is needed, then created and delivered by someone like the BBC.
The search engine would exist to serve the websites listed, not the other way around.