Comment spam is about brute-force robot scripts running amok on potentially millions of sites. They want click-throughs, not page rankings.
Comment spam is about brute-force robot scripts running amok on potentially millions of sites. They want click-throughs, not page rankings.
If all the blog publishing software has the nofollow enabled by default and the vast majority of bloggers don't implement a plugin to change it or even know it exists, then indeed many links will be useless.
What part of 'it will only affect links made in comments' are you having trouble with? What part of 'people will still be able to click on the link' do you not understand?
I understand those points perfectly well. Links will be there to click on, but they won't be given the relevance that allegedly page ranking is supposed to give if a large percentage of those links are ignored by search engines.
And stop trying to turn this into something personal.
"No, they're not, at least not without a purpose."
Uh, the purpose was to incite. Ticked off people tend to use inflammatory language with intent. All I'm simply pointing out is, the debate should be about the topic of this thread, and not someone's ego, or what relegates a piece of software to a wheelchair.
I don't see how a plugin to toggle nofollow on/off could cause a debate like this. I mean, you have nofollow, and you either turn it on... or off... What is there to debate about? If you support nofollow, think it should be on in all WP installations, but don't support the plugin, stop complaining and leave the nofollow plugin set to "on". If you don't support nofollow, think it should be turned off in all WP installations, and don't support the plugin, stop complaining and leave the nofollow plugin set to "off". If you support the plugin, that's fine. Either way, there will be a plugin. There is no reason to debate. Just harbor your personal preference and set your plugin to either "on" or "off".
Since everybody is hashing out their personal opinion, I will never use nofollow. I have plenty of anti-spam measures installed and I don't want to punish my legitimate commentators. If they post a legitimate comment, then they deserve the possible page rank increase. If they post a spam comment, then it's either immediately deleted or held in the moderation que.
If the links are there to click on, they are doing the job for which they were designed; taking people to another site. They are not 'useless' or 'crippled' unless you think the primary purpose of a link is to boost the pagerank of a site, in which case I feel sorry for you.
Can we stop responding to the Anon's of this world ?
If they really do feel strongly enough, they'll register properly.
And yes, I know that's bait, but I can and I will ignore the inevitable retort.
*bangs head against brick wall*
what part of 'Member' are you having trouble with? I am having some difficulty with 'Developer' myself.
Given the enormous contributions to WordPress Podz has made, I'd say "Developer" fits very well.
Well, technically, he is registered.
[Moderated] Yes, the primary purpose of a link is to direct you to another site. But, the primary purpose of Google is to collect teh data of page ranks ans use that data to construct a useful search database! The point that NM is trying to make is that it's not links that are becoming crippled/useless do to nofollow, it's Google.
I'm not disputing that Podz has made a big contribution, but is it really more than Ryan or Carthik, and in that case shouldn't he too have a link on the 1.5 template?
No, it's not more than Ryan or Carthik, but why does anyone have to do more than Ryan or Carthik to be considered a developer?
All I'm simply pointing out is, the debate should be about the topic of this thread, and not someone's ego ...
Amen to no egos (though it all seems pretty on-topic to me).
My point is that "nofollow" is a border skirmish in somebody else's war, and that it's wiser not to take sides, at least not early.
And the strong scent of eager political correctness is, uhh ... well, it's weird. Almost corporate. Ya know?
I don't get it, why are people so adamant about not having an option to turn this off?
It's a simple toggle, with no-follow being on by default. It's a simple switch and it is enough to make everyone happy, but yet such a simple compromise won't be agreed to. There are valid points on both sides so the action should be compromise, not "take it or leave it."
If all comments are no-follow, then what your saying is that you want blogs to be link whores and go onto different services whoring links to themselves, and pinging all services so that people can read them. For the sites with good content, you'll never find them because the thoughtful comments they have left on the blogs of other people won't count towards good karma for them. So basically if I went searching for stuff on ham radio development and never come across an author with excellent content about them because they don't advertise, they don't whore their link out and they don't go out of their way to drive traffic to their site.
Basically this creates a system where people don't get just rewards for meaningful content. Sure, you could link to thier blog, but if your blog is about things like Web content development and theirs is about ham radios, why would you? The two aren't remotely connected and you aren't interested in the subject matter, you just punish everyone who is when they do search for material on ham radios.
What about those that don't make useful comments, people that are out there comment spamming and whoring for links. These are the ones we want to protect against, right? Well, why not delete their comments? Or better yet, why not turn comments off completely? No comments has the same effect on comments that no-follow does, with you having no need to check your site's comments to make sure that no one is spamming your site. If our one true fear is comment spam, so much so that everyone else should suffer, why not turn off comments completely?
I don't like no-follow, it's a bandaid for a problem that won't necessarily stop just because they don't get pagerank anymore. It's a solution to a problem that should has been allowed for from the start. Every blogging system has tools for moderation, link validation, and controlling comments, why is it that suddenly google announces no-follow and everyone jumps up and down as if this will solve the problem of comment spam once and for all? It won't only three major search engines are implementing it, it doesn't hurt already gained page ranks from comment spamming, it isn't implemented in the multitude of other search engines out there, including that of AOL.
> If you want to rank high on Google, try producing decent content. Now there's a radical idea.
Well, yes, isn't it just. That would be like my 200-page commercial site (not including my blogs) or the 150,000+ subscriber newsletter I write for, or the couple of major forums where I do or have moderated since 1999. My pages generally rank well in the major search engines. However, if you have found that simply "producing decent content" will make it rank well and allow people to find it in search engines, more power to you.
Next, to all: I didn't mean to incite anything; I just look at it kind of like my ISP deciding to employ heavy spam controls that result in my not getting legitimate email. Thus the use of the word "crippled"; no doubt another word would have been a better choice for others here. Apologies there.
My point is that there are *many* factors with respect to ranking in Google and the other major search engines that generally aren't known or studied by most webmasters, and there is much misinformation out there. I felt, or did feel until now, that as a member of the community, I might give a word to the wise.
You know, a search for "WordPress nuances" won't return much other than "WordPress nuances" pages because there is generally no way of ranking a page for every term in the book. But almost *any* links help with ranking so long as a search engine spider can follow those links to the pages that are the targets of the links, and that's why comment spammers want links.
At the same time, a great deal of the ranking of blogs is based almost solely upon links from other blogs and/or websites. In fact, blogs can be viewed as a vast interlinked network, something that Google hasn't been able to combat on its own but has wanted to do, if you'll look around. So if blogs in general stop allowing links to be followed, then in addition to not helping any spammers whose links they've allowed to remain on their blogs, those blogs *also* don't help each other. Then you have only the major blogs ranking well. I suspect that this will have an interesting effect, but what do I know.
My personal feeling about legitimate comments on my blog is that I don't care if the comment also links back to the poster's site. Not a big deal, I'm happy to be able to read their blogs, too, and it doesn't bother me that they get something back for what they give. I certainly don't belittle them or their input by calling them spammers, because they're not. Kinda like I send money to the WP developers for copies of WP that my clients or I use even though WP is technically free. And will continue to do so, regardless of what version I choose to use, because I highly appreciate what WordPress' developers do and have done. It's pretty slick stuff, and I don't ask for it for free.
> Almost corporate. Ya know?
One begins to wonder. Good catch. <grin>
That's all. I've now said my piece, and will leave y'all to your own views.
Two words: option bloat. Too many options is confusing for new users. If no-follow distresses you that much, all you have to do is download a plugin to modify the behavior. If you can't locate and install a plugin, chances are you know nothing about no-follow anyway.
Two words: option bloat.
Two words: same difference.
Leave things as they are, and let plugins implement "nofollow".
As Matt was one of the signatories to the announcement of no-follow, I somehow doubt that will happen.
Anon, the point of this thread is that, whether or not a nofollow toggle plugin is included with the package, one will be written by someone. It's inevitable, and it's stupid complain about it. It's just a bloody toggle switch. [Moderated]
As for members having to do MORE than Ryan or Carthik to be considered developers, that's a load of crap. First of all, if that were true, then there would be only one developer. Let's consider Member A and Member B. Member A contributes 60% of the code, therefore he is a developer. Member B only contributes 30% of the code. Under your flawed logic, Member B could never be a developer, because he does not contribute more than Member A. You logic is as flawed as your anonymity. In truth, anyone who's impact is heard on the final project is a developer. And Podz has done more than enough to be heard. His tutorials here: http://tamba2.org.uk/wordpress/ are more than enough to be heard. [Moderated]
Anonymous, given your anonymity, your attacks on members and developers here, and your insistence that the nofollow attribute be included in WP by default, I'd be curious to know what exactly your interest in this is.
The points I've been making about nofollow are actually the same one as Matt's been making on the hackers' list. [Moderated]
I'm rather confused here. From what I can tell, Anonymous is completely right. He/she has pointed out that no-follow will only affect links in comments, which would be the links that really shouldn't have much to say about PageRank (that is, IMHO). But the no-follow will not be used in links posted on the sidebar or in posts. That means that links the author chooses to link to will still be followed by GoogleBot, while links that other people post will not.
Is this correct, or am I misunderstanding something here?
THANK YOU. That is precisely the point that I have been trying to make. It's good to see that someone's got it.
What would be even better would be if one of the people making personal attacks on me could explain what's inaccurate about that summary, since contrary to popular belief I don't work for Google.
I understood the point back on the first page.
There is an inaccuracy: as I explained earlier, there is more to the value of a link than the PageRank it passes to the targeted page. Google could remove the PageRank portion of its algorithm and links would still affect rankings in Google. But that's beside the point; taken in the spirit of the post, it's pretty much true.
Assuming for the sake of discussion that the statement was completely accurate: the fact that it was accurately described does not mean that that is how I wish my blog to function.
Why does it HAVE to be a plugin, why not a just a global on/off box in the admin section. Which I think btw should default to 'off', I dont think the developers should make assumptions like this on behalf of the users.
The reason for using a plugin to change a setting like this stems from the fact that at some point, you have to decide what is most important to include as an on/off switch or other such toggle in your application. This does not mean that the 'nofollow' thing is not important. What I am saying is that there are many, many things that can be changed to customize WordPress, and using plugins is the most effecient way of adding that functionality. If the coders put in a mechanism to change everything as part of the WordPress core code, the program would bloat considerably and be more difficult to manage. Also, there would always be discussions like "I never use feature A, so can I somehow delete that choice in my options panel so it doesn't show up?"
By using plugins, a person may pick and choose the things s/he wishes to customize, change, or delete. The best thing the programmers can do is to give us lots of hooks into the core so that the plugins are easy to write and maintain, and that is the focus.
This is my personal perspective, and may or may not be the same as anyone else's.
This is my personal perspective, and may or may not be the same as anyone else"s.
That is why imo it should default to off just as with regular links.
Especially as at least one linkspammer has said its pretty much a waste of time - http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/01/31/link_spamer_interview/
not to rain on your parade but in the article there is a very succinct paragraph, that in one step shows why nofollow should be on by default and disabled only by people who know what they are doing.
When Sam begins a spam run, he has one target, though he"ll accept any of six. Principal one: come top of the search engines for his chosen site"s phrase. "But you"ll accept coming in at 1,2 or 3, or if you come at 8,9 or 10. Actually, 8, 9 and 10 have better conversion rates.
one target, get to the top of the google results list.
nofollow, as has been discussed at length in this thread, addresses only one aspect of comment spam, it prevents a comments links from increasing a sites results status.
nofollow will not stop spammers leaving comments, but it does mean that links in those comments have no utility towards a spammers "one target".
nofollow will not stop spammers leaving comment
You see, thats the important point for me. Why should legitimate commenters be penalised because of the odd spam comment which might get through the anti spam net. IMO if someone leaves a comment google should follow the link through as it may well be relevant to the discussion.
Using no follow just feels to me like were moving that line further towards ourselves and laying down for the spammers.
Thats aside from it IMO just being one of Googles ideas and so it should not be in any cms/blog software 'out of the box'.
But thats just my opinion and if it means that i have to download a plugin and install it to de-cripple my blog then I guess thats what Ill have to do.
Can I just say that like others I'm finding the use of 'cripple' in this context both misleading and offensive. The links still work, readers can still click on them, if you're so devastated about your spammers not getting their tiny little drop of Googlejuice it will be easily remedied with a plugin, so get over it already.
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