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January 22, 2012

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Google's Search Plus Your World

Temporarily Turn Off Search Plus Your World

turn off google's search plus your world

Google's Search Plus Your World

On the 10th of this month, Google made one of the biggest changes to its search engine since its inception. Google added something they're calling Search Plus Your World that mixes your regular Google searches in with content taken from your Google+ circles and posts. If you are not one of the 90 million people using Google Plus, then the changes to Google's SERP's (Search Engine Results Pages) as a result of Google implementing Search Plus Your World is something you're not likely to have noticed. But if you are a Google + user and you also use Google as your primary search engine there is no doubt that Search Plus Your World has come to your attention.

Most of the people that I've talked to about Search Plus Your World tell me they find it annoying. Of course if you don't care to see input from all of your Google Plus buddies when you make a Google search you can mouse over to the top right-hand portion of Google's SERP's page and click the little icon that looks like a globe. Clicking this Hide Personal Results icon will do just that. You will immediately be presented with a page that filters out all or your Google Plus connections. And that page will present you with the option to toggle back to a SERP's page that will integrate your Google search with Google+ (see illustration above). So personally, I don't see what all the fuss is about. I sort of like knowing my friends thoughts on subjects I'm searching and if they get in the way I can easily toggle them off the page.

Permanently Turn Off Search Plus Your World

turn off google's search plus your world

Google's Search Plus Your World

But if you want to go with the nuclear option and permanently do away with Search Plus Your World here's how to do that.

  1. Browse to

  2. Click on the gear icon next to your Avatar (see illustration).

  3. Click Search Settings.

  4. Scroll down to Personal Result Options.

  5. Click the balloon next to Do not use personal results.

  6. Click Save at the bottom of the page.

And now Search Plus Your World is no more! You can easily use the above instructions to turn it back on.

But personally, I'm not going to go with the above Nuclear Option - at least for now. As long as Google doesn't go overboard with Search Plus Your World I can live with it and I sometimes even enjoy seeing the Google Plus side of Google search. After all, I can always use that handy little icon at the top of the page to turn Search Plus Your World off. Of course it comes right back on again the next time I do a Google search while I'm logged into my Google account and Google Plus.

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Steve Is the Geek at

Vague and Nebulous Computer Tips and TricksQuestions? Comments? Did I get something wrong? Email me at and I WILL get back to you.

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