Spreading some link love

This content is 17 years old. I don't routinely update old blog posts as they are only intended to represent a view at a particular point in time. Please be warned that the information here may be out of date.

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 (1121879 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.

8 thoughts on “Spreading some link love

  1. 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?

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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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