I rely mostly on Google for my searches, but haven’t found a way to do the following: when I do a search for an exact phrase, how do I search for ONLY that exact phrase without variants based on punctuation? For example, if I’m searching for “Peggy Sue”, I don’t want matches like “the cheeseburger is for Peggy, Sue gets the hotdog”. In other words, a connected phrase, no conjunctions based on commas, semicolons, hyphens or periods. I tried using the exclude from search features, but apparently Google doesn’t recognize phrase differences based on punctuation.
use quotes around any phrase you want returned exactly literally, for example:
gets 4,400,000 hits;
gets around 38,500,000 hits;
cows (with no quotes at all)
If it makes a difference, both “Peggy Sue” and “Peggy**,** Sue” retrieved identical results, about 1,390,000 hits, though the former took .59 seconds, while the latter took .15 (caching?). It makes a bit of sense for Google to treat and apostrophes and commas differently.