The BBC has decided to scrap its web search feature, long criticised for being a poor imitation of Google and other popular search engines, after discussions with the BBC Trust.
Seetha Kumar, the BBC's online controller, announced the decision in a blog post. "You cannot help but come to the conclusion that BBC web search was not sufficiently different in quality or character from others like Google or MSN to justify the time and money spent maintaining it," she wrote.
Kumar added that most users had easy access to similar search services built directly into their browsers, and that use of the BBC's web search feature had been very low, amounting to between 10 and 15 per cent of all searches on BBC Online.
The feature had been removed once before in the past, but was reinstated after a number of users complained. However, Kumar confirmed that the removal would be permanent this time.
"We'd do far better to concentrate on making our own BBC web site search as good as it can be, for example by developing our topics proposition and improving the way we point users to other related content around and off the site," she said.
"This is why we have decided - with the endorsement of the BBC Trust - to end the web search option."
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