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RFC: A Community-Led Search Engine

hazz22 profile image Harry Winser ・1 min read

I've recently gotten into using DuckDuckGo as my main search engine. Looking at DDG, and others, I started to wonder:

Are there any community driven, open source, search engines currently running?

After doing some searching, I couldn't find any. This struck me as odd considering there are number of initiatives out there from mapping (OpenStreetMaps) to music (Open Music Archive) to human knowledge (Wikipedia).

Does this exist? And if not, why not? Is there any appetite for such a project?

Discussion

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I don't think open sourcing a search engine is a good idea. Web masters will start mis using it.

 

I agree that almost any system is open to abuse (with Wikipedia being a prime example), I'd counter that open source tends to be better than closed source due to accountability and transparency. This is a very valid concern.

However, the current system (mostly owned by the duopoly of Bing and Google) has already been found to have been abused. Google are currently fighting numerous lawsuits for abusing it's power over search and has little to no oversight from the external and wider community. Google also "rules with an iron fist" when it comes to indexing requirements and changes. Also, their current push towards AMP should make all web developers wary.

Could there be space for an open source, transparent search engine?