Armchair slacktivism just flew out the window with a new search engine called Ecosia. Designed around algorithms used by Yahoo and Bing, Ecosia is posturing itself as the opponent to Google. The main difference here, rather than simply touting better search results, is that every search helps generate revenue for the “Plant A Billion Trees” charity by The Nature Conservancy.
Using a stripped user interface and happy-go-lucky cartoon characters, Ecosia reminds searchers just why they aren’t using Google: a running total of how many users are active and how many trees have been planted constantly runs in the sidebar, rather than sponsored search results or cookie-driven ads.
So far, Ecosia’s website claims to have helped plant 105,308 trees.
"From now on, there's no longer a reason to search with Google," Ecosia founder Christian Kroll told the Latin Post. "Ecosia gives you equal-caliber search results and lets you help fight climate change at the same time."
One of the ironies of the situation is Ecosia has an extension for Chrome—subversion from within the system.