Loren Baker has an excellent post on why the nofollow tag sucks. In fact he provides thirteen reasons why it has failed to deliver on its original purpose. I couldn’t agree more. Loren reminds us that the NoFollow link attribute (rel=”nofollow”) was originally created to block search engines from following links in blog comments, due to the amount of blog comment spamming. However this has not dealt with the real problem and that is stopping people from spamming blog comments in the first place. Things like asking a question or requiring authentication works much better in combating comment spam.
It is a worthy read but here are a few of my favorites.
If a blogger moderates comments, there is no need for a NoFollow attribute. “Everyone who passes a human inspection should get the link love.”
Linking to someone with a NoFollow attribute is a sign of not trusting them. It’s like reaching to shake someone’s hand, but stopping to put on a pair of latex gloves.
No Follow sucks because the search engines (particularly Google) can’t make up their mind about when and how it should be used, thus causing confusion among inexperienced webmasters who do STUPID things like No Follow ALL outgoing links from their website to “protect the site from page rank leakage” and other silly ideas.
Personally, I don’t practice the “nofollow” rule because honestly if I link to someone, whether it be a freebie or a paid link, it is because I have reviewed the link and find it to be of value to visitors to our sites.