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Submission + - DuckDuckGo wants to leverage open source to compete with search giants

An anonymous reader writes: In an article on Opensource.com, DuckDuckGo's Tal Raviv writes:

DuckDuckGo is a search engine known for putting privacy first for users. So, when we passed 3 billion annual searches last year, we knew it was critical that we continue to serve users without sacrificing their privacy. The key, we realized, was open source.

First, we created an API. Then we started Instant Answers, where anyone can join us in improving search results. Instant Answers appear above the organic search results, and we now have hundreds of people from all over the world contributing. Since our first community commit almost four years ago, we've learned a lot of powerful lessons about what makes an open source community thrive. They've contributed hundreds of data sources and thousands of pull requests, which amount to around 800 Instant Answers at the time of this writing, capable of answering millions of searches.

We certainly have a long way to go, but we've learned that building a successful open source community—like any active community—comes down to providing value for individuals. Learn how to tune in to their motivations, find ways to align those motivations with your goals, and work hard to get barriers out of their way.

Communities always come down to people. The more DuckDuckGo has invested in helping them, the more we have received in turn.

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