Technology 2 min read

DuckDuckGo Search Engine Acquires '' Domain From Google

Mr. Tempter /

Mr. Tempter /

After years of dispute, the privacy-focused DuckDuckGo search engine finally acquired the domain from its rival Google.

On Monday, NamePros, an online community for domain name investors, confirmed that the DuckDuckGo search engine acquired the ‘‘ domain. Previously owned by Google, the search engine giant has been redirecting users to its search engine’s homepage for years.

“We’re pleased Google has chosen to transfer ownership of to DuckDuckGo. Having will make it easier for people to use DuckDuckGo,” Gabriel Weinberg, CEO of DuckDuckGo, was quoted as saying.

The domain was inherited by Google when it acquired On2 Technologies in 2010, two years after DuckDuckGo’s founding.  On2 Technologies was initially known as the Duck Corporation, a small publicly traded company founded in 1992 which developed video codec technology.

According to Weinberg, they tried to purchase the domain from Google but were told that the company was not interested in selling the domain. Instead, the search giant opted to use the domain to redirect people to its search page. The company’s refusal to sell the domain has been Weinberg’s source of frustration for years.

Read More: Top SEO For DuckDuckGo — Hyperlocalization Tips

Google’s Solution

To clear the confusion, Google added a DuckDuckGo link to its search page last July after receiving a series of disputes from other sites.

“I looked into this. We acquired  as part of On2 (ex-Duck Corporation) in 2010, hence redirected. To help any lost anatine navigators, we’ve now changed the redirect and added links,” Google executive, Rob Shilkin, tweeted.

Weinberg thanked Google for the gesture, but it has not stopped him from persuading the company to sell the domain. Finally, after more than a decade of dispute, Google has relinquished its hold on the domain.

“Google has agreed with DuckDuckGo, Inc. to transfer ownership and rights of the domain to DuckDuckGo,” a Google spokesperson told Gizmodo. “We’re pleased Google has chosen to transfer ownership of to DuckDuckGo. Having will make it easier for people to use DuckDuckGo.”

What do you think will the implications be, both for Google and the DuckDuckGo search engine, now that the domain has been transferred?

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Chelle Fuertes

Chelle is the Product Management Lead at INK. She's an experienced SEO professional as well as UX researcher and designer. She enjoys traveling and spending time anywhere near the sea with her family and friends.

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