Do Follow – Should you change link policies on your blog?

Michele’s kicked off something interesting with his blog post about the IIA’s Blog putting in nofollow or rather using the wordpress default on their blogs for comments.

(For the non techies who are the majority on this blog: the nofollow attribute in links left in comments on a blog means Google and other search engines won’t give these links any weight because they came from your site. See some people/bots had been leaving 1000s of comments on blogs before which linked to certain sites and it resulted those sites getting artificial boosts in Google rankings)

The IIA have since changed that around. Michele himself talks about his moderation policy and how he nukes any soft sell comments. If you have a moderation policy of doing that then removing nofollow makes sense I would guess.

No, not that kinda Link:
Photo owned by metaxin (cc)

However, the way I see it, links without nofollow should be ones that you endorse and they’re not links in comments. I leave plenty of comments through that I do not agree with. I’ll do the same for links but I don’t vote with my site for those links. My own moderation policy is I’ll allow most stuff through soft sell or not (though not all) with the idea being the stupid and bad linking of an individual just makes them look like tits.

When you have IIA in their training classes advocating leaving comments on blogs to boost your Google rankings, maybe nofollow is actually a good idea?

Also wouldn’t spam engines target your blog more if it removes nofollows?

It would be nice though for WordPresss to allow you to have that control. Maybe they’ll bring it out. Meanwhile there’s a Dofollow wordpress plugin for it.

Update: This is what happens when you allow dofollow. The spammers make lists.

6 Responses to “Do Follow – Should you change link policies on your blog?”

  1. Roseanne says:

    Hi Damien,

    Thanks for linking to our blog above. I have actually edited that post as a result because it was clear that I hadn’t been clear IYKWIM 🙂 The IIA is not advocating in its training classes to leave comments on blogs to boost your Google rankings. It was a badly constructed sentence on my part which I have now edited to reflect the conclusions I drew at the time rather than what was taught in the class. Thankfully yourself, Richard Hearne, Krishna De and Michele Neylon offered your expertise and shared your approaches to moderating comments so I have learned some valuable lessons about blogging myself!

  2. frankp says:

    I wrote a post on this a while back on the Aonach blog, with much the same view as yourself. Just thought you might be interested in it.

  3. Cormac says:

    In my opinion a blog should use dofollow if they enforce a comment policy backed by strict moderation and anti-spam protection such as Akismet or Dr. Dave’s Spam Karma.

    If you are going to remove nofollow from your comments then I’d recommend the Link Love plugin which sets links to follow after X amount of comments by a user. This ensures that you don’t completely renege control over your comment links and that you also reward your active and subscribed readership.

    A second plugin to get would be Nofollow Case by Case in which you can amend a followed comment and change it to nofollow if you feel the comment is dubious.

    I listed a good few Irish blogs that have removed dofollow from their comments last year.

  4. Merrill says:

    That a blog uses nofollow or dofollow, doesn’t change anything for the readers. They click on a link or they don’t.
    And I write to be read, not to be crawled.

  5. TheChrisD says:

    I have the WordPress defalut nofollow on my comments, but I still maintain a strict-ish moderation policy.

    Not that enabling dofollow on my comments would help boost the rankings much…

  6. Ivan says:

    I have DoFollow installed and active for a few months but have started to get a lot of spam, maybe five to six comments per day. Not sure if that is a normal level or have I attracted more due to the policy.