Don’t Be Evil Tool

Definition of Don’t Be Evil Tool

The “Don’t Be Evil Tool” was an unofficial Google Chrome extension created in 2012 by engineers from Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace. The tool was designed to highlight and expose instances where Google might have favored its own services in search results, which contradicted Google’s informal corporate motto, “Don’t be evil.” The extension aimed to ensure unbiased search results and promote fairness in search rankings by adjusting Google’s search suggestions with results from different social networks.


The phonetic transcription of “Don’t Be Evil Tool” using the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) is:/ˈdoʊnt bi ˈivəl tuːl/

Key Takeaways

  1. Don’t Be Evil Tool is a browser extension that aims to bring unbiased search results and prevent search result manipulation by big tech companies.
  2. It was developed by the Markup as a response to Google’s removal of their “Don’t be evil” motto, in order to maintain the ideal of providing trustworthy and unbiased information to users.
  3. The tool works by extracting search results from Google’s data and using an algorithm that excludes personalized data, advertisements, and promoted content, ensuring users receive unbiased and organic information.

Importance of Don’t Be Evil Tool

The technology term “Don’t Be Evil Tool” is important because it highlights the significance of ethical considerations and creating a user-oriented experience when developing and using technology.

Originating from Google’s unofficial motto, “Don’t be evil,” it emphasizes the responsibility of tech giants, developers and engineers to commit to transparency, protect user privacy, avoid malicious practices, and contribute positively to society.

Prioritizing ethical conduct in technology not only builds trust with users, but also fosters an environment that emphasizes integrity, fairness, and respect, which is essential for creating innovative solutions that benefit humanity.


The “Don’t Be Evil Tool,” also known as the “Don’t be evil bookmarklet,” is a tool that was created to emphasize the importance of unbiased search results for users. It was designed by engineers at the tech company DuckDuckGo in response to Google’s Search Plus Your World feature, which displayed personalized search results based on users’ social activities, profiles, and interests within the Google+ social network.

The purpose of the Don’t Be Evil Tool was to restore search neutrality by removing the personalized aspect of search results, ensuring that users were exposed to a broader range of information sources and opinions, rather than just those that align with their social networks. By utilizing the Don’t Be Evil Tool, users gain access to search results that are less driven by social bias and more focused on presenting a balanced and fair perspective on the queries being searched.

This promotes an open discovery of information, encourages critical thinking, and empowers users to explore a wider range of perspectives and ideas. Ultimately, the tool’s primary function is to strive for a more democratic, transparent, and impartial search experience, highlighting the importance of a user’s right to seek diverse knowledge and maintain control over their online experiences.

Examples of Don’t Be Evil Tool

The “Don’t Be Evil” Tool, also known as the “Focus on the User” bookmarklet, was a browser extension developed by Google engineers in 2012 as a protest against Google’s search practices. The tool aimed to give more neutral and relevant search results by prioritizing organic search results over Google+ recommendations. Here are three real-world examples where the “Don’t Be Evil” Tool made a difference:

Independent Businesses: When searching for local businesses on Google near their location, users noticed that Google often displayed Google+ listings or promoted businesses over those with a higher search relevance. By using the “Don’t Be Evil” Tool, users could find and support independent local businesses with relevant and organic search results instead of those boosted by the Google+ network.

Local Events: At the time, searching for local events often prioritized those events posted on Google+ rather than more popular or relevant events. By using the “Don’t Be Evil” Tool, users could access a wide variety of events scheduled in their area through a more unbiased search.

Competition between Social Networking Sites: The “Don’t Be Evil” Tool displayed results from various social networking sites, as opposed to prioritizing Google+ profiles and content. This made it easier for users to find and connect with friends and family on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, rather than being limited to Google+ connections.It’s important to note that the “Don’t Be Evil” Tool’s relevance in today’s search results might be altered due to changes in Google’s search algorithms and its preference for local businesses and events. However, at the time of the tool’s creation, it was widely seen as a more honest and unbiased alternative to Google’s default search practices.

Don’t Be Evil Tool – Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Don’t Be Evil Tool?

The “Don’t Be Evil” Tool is a browser extension designed to promote unbiased and transparent search results on various search engine platforms. It aims to reduce the influence of monopolistic control over search results and help users retrieve genuinely relevant information.

How does the Don’t Be Evil Tool work?

The tool works by scanning and analyzing search results to identify any instances of biased content or manipulation. It then filters out such search results and provides users with a more accurate and unbiased list, ensuring that they receive the most relevant information for their query.

Which search engines are supported by this tool?

The Don’t Be Evil Tool can currently be used with popular search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. The developers are continuously working to extend its support for more search engines and platforms.

How do I install the Don’t Be Evil Tool?

Installing the Don’t Be Evil Tool is quite simple. Just visit the tool’s official website and follow the instructions provided for your specific web browser. Typically, you’ll have to download the browser extension and enable it in your browser settings.

Is the Don’t Be Evil Tool available for all browsers?

The tool is compatible with many popular web browsers such as Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. However, it may not function on some less common browsers. Visit the tool’s official website for an updated list of supported browsers.

How much does the Don’t Be Evil Tool cost?

The Don’t Be Evil Tool is a free, open-source browser extension, making it accessible to anyone. There are no hidden charges or subscription fees for using this tool.

Why is the tool called “Don’t Be Evil”?

The name “Don’t Be Evil” is derived from Google’s original motto, which emphasized the company’s commitment to providing unbiased and user-centric services. The tool’s creators use this name to remind users of the importance of maintaining neutrality and fairness in search results.

Related Technology Terms

  • Google Code of Conduct
  • Corporate Ethical Framework
  • Data Privacy Principles
  • User Trust and Transparency
  • Technology Ethics Policies

Sources for More Information


About The Authors

The DevX Technology Glossary is reviewed by technology experts and writers from our community. Terms and definitions continue to go under updates to stay relevant and up-to-date. These experts help us maintain the almost 10,000+ technology terms on DevX. Our reviewers have a strong technical background in software development, engineering, and startup businesses. They are experts with real-world experience working in the tech industry and academia.

See our full expert review panel.

These experts include:


About Our Editorial Process

At DevX, we’re dedicated to tech entrepreneurship. Our team closely follows industry shifts, new products, AI breakthroughs, technology trends, and funding announcements. Articles undergo thorough editing to ensure accuracy and clarity, reflecting DevX’s style and supporting entrepreneurs in the tech sphere.

See our full editorial policy.

More Technology Terms

Technology Glossary

Table of Contents