Spreading some link love

The rel="nofollow" attribute on HTML anchors was supposed to help prevent comment spam. Unfortunately, as Michael Hampton explains at length, NoFollow hasn’t worked – at least not based on the volume of comment spam that Akismet has removed since I moved to WordPress (510531 spam comments detected as you read this post).

U comment.  I follow.Randa Clay has created an alternative – the I Follow Movement – sites that acknowledge the contribution that commenting makes to the blogoshere (avoiding the need to specifically add links to a blogroll in order to spread some link love). I figure that if NoFollow is not preventing comment spam, the least I can do is let the information people leave here in comments work for them in the search engines (at the risk that a few spam comments will still make it through).

Following Owen’s example, I’ve implemented the DoFollow WordPress plug-in on this site so URLs in comments will now (hopefully) be picked up by the Googlebot, Slurp, MSNbot, Teoma and others. Incidentally, if I specifically add rel="nofollow" to a link, it still works – so it’s still possible to block links that you really don’t want the bots to follow (robots.txt directives are unaffected too).

So, please, comment away – and consider doing the same on your site.


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  • Saturday 22 March 2008 - 18:35 | Permalink

    There are a few reasons that bloggers are following the links of their commenters. I am curious about your reason why you are being following links of your loyal visitors and commenters? Because you want to reward them or do you hate NoFollow?

  • Sunday 23 March 2008 - 14:57 | Permalink

    The main reason is that the comments left on blog posts are often highly relevant. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case and I can remove links that do not contribute the the conversation. I don’t hate NoFollow – quite the opposite in fact – NoFollow can be a really useful tool in certain circumstances.

  • Tuesday 25 March 2008 - 3:56 | Permalink

    The NoNoFollow movement is a great way to increase blog participation at the end of the day if you want to leave a comment the last thing you want is for it to be moderated by some backdoor piece of code. I for one have implemented the DoFollow plugin on my blogs and hope more people do so in the future.

  • Thursday 26 June 2008 - 1:35 | Permalink

    Mark-Here’s what I don’t understand. Why is that when someone creates a blog, as I am about to do, they have to search around for a plugin that will turn comments from nofollow to dofollow. Most people who are just starting out don’t know anything about follow/nofollow. I think that wordpress should be designed with a simple button you click to decide whether comments are follow or no follow. You shouldn’t have to go find a plugin. Also, on blogger blogs I don’t think there are plugins so you are just stuck with the nofollow.

  • Thursday 19 February 2009 - 19:24 | Permalink

    Glad to have another dofollow blog to visit!:-

    Your blog is already doing so well so this would be more of a “thank you” to your readers, I guess.

  • Friday 20 March 2009 - 1:44 | Permalink

    I think people make too much of the whole no follow and do follow thing. What’s the big deal? I don’t care if I get a no follow link. Who cares? I don’t consider it punishment because I only leave comments on blogs that I find interesting in some way. I would leave the comment even if there was NO link to my blog. I think sometimes bloggers get too wrapped up in this little world we call blogging.

  • Thursday 8 October 2009 - 13:02 | Permalink

    It’s great to see another quality blog joining this movement. I like how it shares the “Link Juice” around different sites and so helps businesses and individual blog/website owners alike.

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