People think they hate personalized search, but they actually love it.

A new survey from the Pew Internet & American Life Project found that preference for Google among search users has nearly doubled in the last eight years -- from 47% in 2004 to 83% today.

The same survey found that "Nearly three-quarters of search engine users surveyed say they don't want search engines to mine their personal information to tailor results to their interests, something Google has been doing since January."

First of all, that last sentence is in error. Google has been personalizing search since the summer of 2005.

Affinity for Google has nearly doubled during the same time Google has been improving personalization.

Personalization improves the ability for Google to give people what they're looking for. And that increased relevance is precisely why people like Google so much.

So the take-away from these survey results for me, at least, is not that people hate personalization, but love it without understanding the role personalization has on improving results.

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