Google social search is the feature that makes you see posts shared by people you know in your search results. Some people find these kinds of posts very useful, while many others find them really frustrating when searching the Web. Google social search returns Google+ posts from people you know, posts shared by your friends, and other contents from websites linked to your Google account.
Now, Google has unveiled an additional social search feature to hide or show “Personal results”, though they are still experimenting with the feature. The Google social search feature was unveiled with the catch-line “Search, plus your World”, and comes with two new adjoining buttons denoting “Show Personal Results” and “Hide Personal Results”. You have the option to turn off Google personal results or turn it on to include your own posts or those of people connected to you on Google services. When “Personal Results” is turned off, you will receive the regular results you used to have before the introduction of those new buttons.
What is Personal Results on “Search plus Your World”?
The newly introduced Personal Results include contents you have shared on Google +, Picasa or other products connected to your Google account. These results are entirely private and are shown based on your own activities on Google services generally, and it is shown only when you are logged into Google.
2 Ways Turn Off Personal Results in Your Google Search
Google has succeeded in creating very simple ways to turn your personal results on and off.
1. Instantly Hide Your Personal Results on Google: This is very easy to achieve. Locate the globe icon on the top right side of your search results and click on it to temporarily hide your personal results. Similarly to temporarily show your personal results, click on the second icon next to it.
2. Permanently Hide Personal Results: On the top right corner of your browser where your Google profile picture is, click “Options” denoted by the star button beside your profile picture. Select “search results”, and scroll down to the section for “Personal Results”. Then, select “Do not use personal results”; and the “personal Results” option will be permanently turned off.
How to Turn Off Google Social Search Completely
If you don’t want to see any form of personalized or social results, there are three ways to achieve that.
1. “Log Out” of Google before Searching the Engine: This is the best way to totally eliminate social results. Once Google loses your identity, they cannot return personalized results. On Google Chrome, you can launch “new incognito window”, while you can “Start Private Browsing” on Firefox to do this.
2. Delete Your Google Profile: This is another way around it. Deleting your Google profile will disconnect you from all the sites that can be linked to you and thus prevent Google from socializing your results.
3. Review Your Social Contacts: This actually involves disconnecting from some people on your various social networks and Google contacts. This solution is especially useful for people who have identified the individuals cluttering their search results.
So, Google search engine can still be used to the fullest if you know exactly what to do. If you have other ways of filtering unnecessary social results, please share with others in the comments.
How Google Social Search works
Social Search demonstration
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