Tag: rel=nofollow

No incentive to follow Nofollow

Many moons ago, Google rallied the other big search engines to adopt a standard called rel=”nofollow” with the goal to save its PageRank algorithm from blog comment and trackback spammers. Blog platform developers made it a default standard, and people assumed that was the end of blog-oriented spam.

Carsten Cumbroski says rel=nofollow doesn’t cut it, and as a result PageRank is dead.

I won’t comment on the latter, but I assume the real problem is that spammers just didn’t get the message. And why should they? The onus was on the bloggers to essentially do the search engines a favor for the “benefit of all” – unfortunately nofollow really only benefits the search engines. The spammers are leveraging the fact that comment and trackback spam is generally a pain in the ass to manage – the existence of a tag attribute that blocks contribution to the linking site’s PageRank doesn’t deter them because they are playing an effortless numbers game. One in a million spams will get directed at a site that doesn’t follow nofollow. They get a link whether the tag is used or not, as long as the blogger is lazy enough to let it through, and that is generally enough for them.

If Google (and the rest) really wanted this thing to work, what they should have done is give some type of credit to bloggers that enabled the tag. But they didn’t, and probably won’t.

Following “nofollow”

A bit of discussion is taking place as to whether search engines are actually following “nofollow.”

When they said they wouldn’t follow the rel=”nofollow” tag, did they really mean they would not follow “nofollow,” follow the policy of not following, not follow the policy of following, or something else entirely? The whole issue leads me to believe that the major engines joining in the original effort may have hired government trained spokepeople (like the guy who puts out this malarkey) to issue the original news.

We may never know exactly what they meant, but I think the blogging community should be following this.

Tag: rel=”no follow”, explained

There has been a lot of talk about the rel=”no follow” tag attribute within the technology community, and a bit at Spamroll as well. The rel=”no follow” tag is supposed to discourage comment/trackback spammers from attacking blogs, as the tag keeps search engines from following links which may affect page rankings. While it seems like a good idea, there has been some talk that this is the blogging community fixing the search engines’ problem. I don’t know if I agree on that point, but think it is an engaging topic for conversation, and very relevant, as it has been in implementation for a couple of months now.

There are spam blogs, and then there are SPAM BLOGS#*$@&!

Adrants posted this quicky (see Adrants: Weblogs Are The New Spam) regarding a report by Dave Sifry of Technorati, pointing out blogs as the latest spam culprit. They used the term “horrifically depressing” right at the front of the post, for additional FUD factoring.

Thank goodness Dave responded, to clarify matters.

Google getting bombed, with eggs

It seems the blogging community is trying to “fight” back in the comment spam battle. There is a concerted effort in progress to increase the Google PageRank of Wikipedia for the term “online poker.” Somehow, bloggers feel if they can increase Wikipedia’s PageRank, that the spamming of their blogs will stop.

Is this a viable effort, or a show of infantile force? I think there are several issues at hand here.