21 Reasons Why Anti-Nofollow SEOs Can’t Think Straight

Paid link buyers and sellers are nothing but black hat spammers (though you’ll never catch me saying spamming is right or wrong - to quote Vlad from Max Payne 2, “you have to do what you have to do.“). Now I’m hearing alot of regurgitation going on, so I compiled a list of 21 major compelling (and not so compelling) anti-Google-paid-link-policy objections I came across on the Net in the last few days.

And the nominees are…

  1. Google, you’re just trying to make more money on Adwords.
    Rebuttal: Just because I make money on a product doesn’t take away from the value of my product. You’re gonna tell me Sony’s evil because it doesn’t make PS3s for free?
  2. Innocent sites will get penalized if Google guesses wrong or if a site owner isn’t familiar with Google’s Guidelines.
    Rebuttal: None. This is a fair point and Google needs to address it.
  3. It’s Google’s own fault for building a link-dependent algo.
    Rebuttal: There’s no way Google can judge the quality or accuracy of content on a page unless they build a machine that can read and think. News flash - We’re not there yet. Google HAS to rely on links. There’s no way around it. You might bash NASA for not being able to build space colonies, but I got no respect for armchair quarterbacks that don’t even understand the game.
  4. There’s no other way for some niche sites to link build.
    Rebuttal: Graywolf argues against people “who don’t think linkbaiting can be used to their boring clients such as carpet cleaners, when I came up with five ideas in less than 15 minutes.” Porn is one tough niche to crack because no one links for free, but other niches in comparison aren’t so tough. Is no one linking to you? Maybe your website isn’t offering anything new or valuable.
  5. Google is telling webmasters to build for search engines, not for people.
    Rebuttal: Have we all forgotten that Matt Cutts said build for both search engines and people?. Now I agree rel=nofollow is building for search engines. Absolutely. Most users won’t even know its there. So we’re stuck in a grey area. But so what? Building for search engines is what SEOs have always done. Why do you pay $10,000 a month for links that send you 2 hits a day? Why do you waste hours writing unique META description tags? Why do you charge $600 an hour for SEO services? To improve usability? Gimme a break. And if you really have issues with building for search engines, maybe its time you quit your profession, because SEO isn’t about content building.
  6. Paid links are whiter than other spam tactics like cloaking or hidden text, so why doesn’t Google go after more nefarious tactics first?
    Rebuttal: Who says Google isn’t working on a solution for better cloak detection? If you assumed paid links is the only thing Google’s spam team is working on, you assumed wrong.
  7. Small site owners who make a living off selling links will go broke. You don’t wanna see them get evicted or something, do you Matt?
    Rebuttal: You’re making a living off contributing to spam and my heart should bleed because … why? Find something better to do with your websites.
  8. This is all FUD. Google is lousy at paid link detection.
    Rebuttal: Yeah, some of it is FUD. If Google could detect paid links, they wouldn’t need site owners to tag paid links with nofollow; they’d just auto devalue paid links without all this media hype and move on. And for easy-to-detect links (can you say Text Link Ads?) they probably already do. If a big chunk of your paid links are automated or above the radar, this isn’t FUD. You are fucked. If all your paid links are contextual, relevant, and point to high quality sites, then yeah, its FUD.
  9. Most links involve some sort of compensation, even if money doesn’t exchange hands.
    Rebuttal: Compensation isn’t the problem. Even marriage is a kind of a trade. I get to have sex every night with a beautiful wife in exchange for providing a roof over her head, helping her make babies, and giving her money to buy expensive jewelry and clothes. Ok so did she marry me for my money or did she marry me because she loves me? Compensation is a non-issue; almost everything in life is a trade. It’s the intent that’s in question.
  10. I aint’ worried. Some paid links are impossible to detect.
    Rebuttal: Yeah, some individual links are undetectable. But many aren’t that hard to detect. And if Google detects a pattern of manipulative intent, your entire IBLs will become suspect.
  11. Google, you’re not being realistic. You can’t expect dishonest people to behave honestly.
    Rebuttal: None. Google needs to find a completely automated paid link detection method that doesn’t depend on people’s good will. Rule breakers will always break rules. From that POV, nofollow doesn’t work.
  12. Google makes money off link sellers like Text Link Ads by letting them run Google ads.
    Rebuttal: Google’s out to make money like everyone else. Besides, don’t blame Google’s Spam Team for what Google’s Adwords people do. They’re two completely different breeds of people.
  13. Pay Per Action doesn’t offer disclosure until you mouseover.
    Rebuttal: Big deal.
  14. Reporting paid links is snitching.
    Rebuttal: Spam Report’s been available to the public for years, and most people (except Sugarrae) have used it at least once. You’ve even bitched about Googlers not acting on your spam reports fast enough (34 million results? Wow). So why the sudden uproar? There’s no bad karma in filing a spam report on a spammer. If you buy links, yeah, that makes you a spammer. But why worry? Googlers go out of its way not to manually penalize sites because manual bans don’t scale. That means hours of tweaking and testing before you see any spammer get penalized. As for “paidlinks” report, Google doesn’t even have a working algo in place yet. So why are you panicking?
  15. Matt, be clearer about what’s a paid link and what isn’t. How about charities that links to a list of donors. Are those paid links?
    Rebuttal: None. Even though some links are obviously paid for, others aren’t so obvious. Google needs to clearly define what constitutes paid and what doesn’t.
  16. You can damage your competitor by buying links to his site then reporting those links to Google.
    Rebuttal: Google is running a beta test on an algorithm that targets thousands of sites, not just one particular site. And history says Google punishes link sellers, not buyers. That may change over time (Andy Beal: “Lasnik explains, why penalize hundreds of sites that sell just a single link, when it’s the recipient that is clearly benefiting?”) but I don’t see that day coming anytime soon. This is SEO FUD defense against Google’s FUD - and it ain’t pretty.
  17. Using paid link reports to spot spam introduces a human factor in Google’s algo.
    Rebuttal: According to tedster, a WMW mod, “Google is already using human input to a degree, and they’ve even patented a more scalable method for integrating editorial oversight without needing to rely on it for everything.” I don’t see Google fully automating everything. There are always going to be Google Adwords reviewers, Google Video submission reviewers, people who read spam reports and site reinclusion requests, engineers who think up new algorithms, PHDs that develop new BETA products… Sure, I’m sure Google would like to automate everything, but a human factor isn’t being “introduced” - its always been a factor.
  18. Google, why are you cramming the Ten Commandments down webmasters’ throats?
    Rebuttal: Wanna cloak? Keyword spam? Use hidden text? Build doorway pages? Buy links? Go ahead. No one’s stopping ya. Do whatever you want with your site - it’s your site. But when you walk into someone else’s house you respect their rules or you’ll be asked to leave. It’s that simple. I like what Linkmoses said on Matt’s blog:

    Ultimately we only have one choice to make. We either follow Google’s reco’s or we don’t. Nobody is forcing anything on us. Like the speed limit, we can -choose- to drive faster, and usually don’t get caught. Like the speed limit, we have no right to act shocked if we are pulled over.

  19. If a link points to a relevant, quality site then compensation is irrelevant.
    Rebuttal: Everyone has a price. Anyone who insists he/she won’t link to a crap site for any amount of money is blowing smoke. If I offered you one million dollars to link to a page that said something really nasty about your mother, you’ll not only link to it but send 10K uniques/day to it using Flash banners and Adbrite.
  20. Paid links improve search results. Successful companies with quality products and the baddest buying power deserve top rankings.
    Rebuttal: Let me introduce to you the players in this game. SEOs: These guys make money off fortune 500 companies who pay them $550/hour to buy up links. Without this tool, SEOs lose their edge. As Rand Fiskin says, “you’d be at a huge competitive disadvantage to your slightly less pointy-white-hat competitor.” Link sellers: these guys live off this monster of a marketplace; they do not want to lose their ability to make thousands of bucks a month on links. Big companies: their ranking depends heavily on paid links - these guys don’t want paid links to go away either. Mom and Pop website owners (yeah, you): you guys are basically screwed. The top 10 spots will be dominated by companies with millions to blow on links and these small website owners can’t compete. The delusion is that every webmaster is made to believe that by buying links, he can someday rank in the top 10, or if not rank at least a few spots higher. The reality is that no matter how much money you spend, if 10 websites outspend you, you’re never gonna show up on the front page. If the 10 richest companies dominate top SERP positions, 99% of you are screwed.
  21. Google, you made PageRank a commodity by displaying it in the Toolbar.
    Rebuttal: Only novice link buyers rely on the toolbar to find potential link sources. I assume Jim Boykin does alot of link buying, but I doubt he ever looks at the toolbar when measuring up a potential buy.
  22. Google, you’re being hypocritical. You said Yahoo Directory is ok because people pay for the review, not the link. So if someone pays me, I review his/her link, and then add the link to my site, why should I get penalized?
    Rebuttal: None. I can’t wrap my head around this one. I understand Google needs expert pages like Yahoo! Directory or DMOZ to calculate topic-dependent authority scores or calculate TrustRank, but to me it sounds like you’re skirting the issue. Alot of people who sell links review and reject link requests.
  23. Aren’t Adwords and adsense paid links?
    Rebuttal: First, Google has no problem with paid links for traffic/advertisement. Get that through your thick skull. Second, neither Adsense nor Adwords pass PageRank. Google’s search pages are disallowed. Notice the line “Disallow:/search”?
  24. It’s not our job to police the internet..
    Rebuttal: Did Matt Cutts offer you money to report paid links? If not, I don’t consider that a job. As for policing the internet, you’re not policing unless you spot a cheater and get him banned. Google isn’t interested in banning anyone. They’re interested in BETA testing their new algorithms. So its more like collecting guinea pigs than playing the town sheriff.

You want to see me try to counter them, right? I might later, but its Monday and I got alot of other stuff to do. *ducks*

For now, here’s my off-the-cuff advice - something you already know. If you’re shopping around for links, buy them under the radar. There are some paid links Google will never be able to detect, but a service like Text Link Ads isn’t one of them. Those links scream “paid links”, and the company is too visible. Assuming Text Link Ads links still carry some juice, they’ll be the first sinking ship among many if Google has its way.

UPDATE: This list is growing by the minute - 24 objections and counting. I updated this post this morning with rebuttals so people like Nick will have something to sink their teeth into.

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27 Responses to “21 Reasons Why Anti-Nofollow SEOs Can’t Think Straight”

  1. >You want to see me try to counter them, right? I might later, but its Monday and I got alot of other stuff to do. *ducks*

    Heh too bloody right you duck. I click through for “21 reasons why anti-no-follow seo’s can’t think straight” and get 24 reasons why no-follow is wrong. And a 5 word rebuttle.

  2. “I click through for “21 reasons why anti-no-follow seo’s can’t think straight” and get 24 reasons why no-follow is wrong. And a 5 word rebuttle.”

    Annoyed Nick? That’s how some users feel when they click on a manipulated search result and wind up on a page that doesn’t deliver. Paid links help make that happen.

    If an extra paid link means higher rankings and more sales, I say “name your price.” But I don’t need to justify my tactics with irrational arguments just to keep my conscience clear.

    How are they irrational? Do I really need to blow a whole day drawing you a road map on why those objections are weak? Then again, maybe I do.

  3. […] Aaron Wall, a highly respected SEO professional, isn’t happy with the move and gives out regarding the real reason Google doesn’t like paid links with Richard Hearne giving good distillation/summary (per Matt Cutts) which has raised my interests. HalfDeck has gone and found us 21 anti-Google-paid-link-policy objections although the list is growing and currently sits at 24, also continued with Google’s Motives Are Selfish - So Are Yours and Mine. Matt Mullenweg posts about sponsored themes in WordPress, something that has become popular with link buyers and its a post that Matt Cutts has given full agreement on. […]

  4. […] 21 Reasons Why Anti-Nofollow SEOs Can’t Think Straight […]

  5. What about affiliate links that are editorial? A good affiliate site has a mix of affiliate links and plain links mixed within the content. The plain non-affiliate links are not there for the sake of them, but simply, because the page its pointing to is relevant, but no affiliate program is available for that site = no affiliate link.

    If you want to provide quality content, you can’t just link to sites that do have an affiliate program and leave the rest out. That would reduce the quality of the site and give the affiliate a hard time to build up a following that comes back to them first.

    Your thoughts?

  6. “What about affiliate links that are editorial? A good affiliate site has a mix of affiliate links and plain links mixed within the content.”

    Hi Carsten,

    On a review site I run, at the end of each review you’ll see a “visit this site” affiliate link. When I rave about a product, my affiliate link is an endorsement and highly-editorial. When I honest-to-god think a product is a rip-off, my affiliate link is just a point of reference.

    But either way, those affiliate links are not to be trusted.

    Ask yourself, “Why am I writing reviews in the first place?”

    I can easily talk myself into believing that I’m writing reviews to help people avoid lame products. Sure, I hope I’m providing a valuable service. And I pour hours into creating value - being second best isn’t part of my game plan - but the reason I run the site is what..

    to help other people? What about my mortage payments? What about my food bills? What about my beer money? What about the PS3 I haven’t got around to buying?

    I might talk myself into believing that my affiliate links are genuine, editorial endorsements. Yeah, I’m extremely picky and not easily satisfied. I only recommend products I’m crazy about. So my affiliate links must be highly editorial.

    They may or may not be but you can’t say for sure because you know one thing - those links got my ref codes all over them.

    When a few affiliate programs killed my accounts, I was forced to link out to their products using straight links. Not fun. It felt as bad as linking out to Wikipedia.

    Let’s face it: editorial or non-editorial, we use affiliate links to make money. Don’t tell me no, because if you didn’t care about money, you wouldn’t be using affiliate links. The fact that an affiliate link points to a great product that people will thank you for is just a justification for making a profit.

    Not to mention two other things:

    1) Nofollow-free affiliate links hurt your bottom line by boosting your affiliate program site’s search ranking. You gain nothing out of that.

    2) Noisy nofollow-free affiliate links water down your site and can keep your site stuck in the supplemental index.

    Here’s a hypothetical about paid links in general:

    Suppose you killed someone, but nobody knows the truth except you. Everybody thinks you’re guilty (and they’re right), but you’ve paid $100,000 to all of the jurors to change their minds. The final judgement - Not guilty (remember O.J?)

    Now suppose you’re innocent, but everybody thinks you’re guilty (remember Scott Peterson?). Again, only you know the truth. You pay $200,000 to all the jurors. Final judgement: Not guilty.

    In the second scenario, money helps prevent injustice, while in the first scenario, money perverts justice. Pro paid linkers say paying jurors is ok if it helps them draw the right conclusions. But what guarantees that bribing jurors only happens when the guy on trial is innocent?

    Google says “look at the facts.” Where were you at the night of the murder? Why do you have “pitchfork” searches in your Web History 2 days before the murder? Why does the victim have your fingerprints all over her dress?

    SEOs say “Fuck that. We should be able to bribe jurors. It’s our money - don’t tell us how to spend it. As long as we’re using our money to defend an innocent man, its a.o.k.”

    But who decides if a guy is innocent? You? His ex-wife? His father-in-law? The victim’s daughter? If we knew he’s innocent why the hell is he still sitting in trial?

    BTW, there’s one situation where I wouldn’t use nofollow on affiliate links. You can read about that here.

  7. Amazing list! I’ll keep checking back for updates.

    Yesterday, I left a comment on Graywolf’s blog that instead of bashing each other, we need to think differently about SEO.

    There is just too much bashing going on regarding this change. Why don’t some people want to give credit to them who really deserve it?

    To the Anti-Nofollow SEO crowd: If you are so afraid of this change that you need to start bashing, a client like me will never select you as a SEO consultant. IMHO, lazy people need to depend on link baiting. Please let Google do what it’s doing. I’m already pissed off seeing crap results coming higer in the SERPs whenever I need to work on a research project.

    Oh, if you talk about Google AdWords, how does it become bad if Google does something to increase its profits? Now what do you expect from Google? Should they give away everything for free just because YOU are not happy? That’s not going to happen, no matter how much bashing goes on (well, that’s my guess). Google is already offering enough for free.

    - Avi

  8. Tetsuto,

    “But who decides if a guy is innocent? You? His ex-wife? His father-in-law? The victim’s daughter? If we knew he’s innocent why the hell is he still sitting in trial?”

    The user does. Keep in mind that directly paid links are paid no matter what happens with them, regardless of traffic that is being generated from them and regardless of conversion.

    You don’t see a dime as affiliate if you are unable to be relevant for your users. You have to be relevant or you are without any income at the end of the month. You don’t link to crap sites where you know that your users will be ripped off. They will come back to you and here goes your reputation. That will hurt your bottom line more and more over time.

    If I endorse something, then I have no problem with passing on Google Juice. Most affiliate links don’t, but that is the merchants problem. I was not accepted by multiple affiliate programs for my pet project site cumbrowski.com and I always wrote a nice and long email to them, that made them change their mind. It had to do with linking to them anyway :).

    So in effect are those links what Google is looking for, right? Why exclude them and indirectly state that you do not endorse the site and its services or products?

  9. Yeah, the vast majority of the arguments are crap. The only argument here I can really sink my teeth into is #22:

    “Google, you’re being hypocritical. You said Yahoo Directory is ok because people pay for the review, not the link. So if someone pays me, I review his/her link, and then add the link to my site, why should I get penalized?”

    I just paid $199.00 to get my company’s website listed in Business.com, because I kept reading over and over that you need to list your website in “quality paid directories” like this. Who decided Business.com was quality? A quick scan of my subcategory and I see tons of poorly categorized listings. I dig a little deeper and find a number of MFA sites and dead links.

    Then I discover that out of hundreds of links on that page, only 6 were marked (paid), including mine. WTF? This is a paid directory, is it not? So I ask customer service about it. Answer: “The listings that do not have the word “paid” have been with Business.com since 1999.” Translation: Sucks to be you. Now hand over that $199.00 and STFU.

    Business(.com) as usual.

  10. “You don’t link to crap sites where you know that your users will be ripped off.”

    In cases like Site Advisor where they track malicious websites, failing to link to crap sites results in bad user experience and zero retention.

    “If I endorse something, then I have no problem with passing on Google Juice.”

    Yeah, I might not have any qualms about making $1,000,000 off a bank robbery, but the bank I rob has a problem with it obviously. I mean, c’mon. It’s a no brainer. Why is it so shocking to hear Google threaten to up its security when its getting robbed left and right?

  11. Hi Adrienne,

    ““The listings that do not have the word “paid” have been with Business.com since 1999.”

    I guess they figure if they were upfront about running paid links through redirects, no one would buy.

    All they have to do is copy Yahoo! Directory’s business model, but instead it seems they rather piss off their customers.

  12. […] If you haven’t already, check out Halfdeck’s post about objections to Google’s paid link policy. Halfdeck has collected 24 arguments against Google’s stance on paid links (and ruthlessly demolished the vast majority of them). […]

  13. Tetsuto,

    Me: “You don’t link to crap sites where you know that your users will be ripped off.”

    You: “In cases like Site Advisor where they track malicious websites, failing to link to crap sites results in bad user experience and zero retention.”

    Haeh? Sorry. but I don’t get that one. Did I miss something I should know about?

    Me “If I endorse something, then I have no problem with passing on Google Juice.”

    You “Yeah, I might not have any qualms about making $1,000,000 off a bank robbery, but the bank I rob has a problem with it obviously. I mean, c’mon. It’s a no brainer. Why is it so shocking to hear Google threaten to up its security when its getting robbed left and right?”

    Wrong, fix the security but don’t implement anything that your customers don’t accept and understand that this is for them and not just a convenience for the “Bank”. A bank that would strip search each customer like they do at the US consulates around the world (or Airports.. Did you fly recently?), before they are allowed to enter the bank, will be a bank without a lot of customers quickly.

    If customers allow this to happen, what will be next (since they are already used to take whatever humiliation and pain asked from them to endure)

    No No, bad argument.

  14. “Wrong”

    C’mon, let’s not steer this discussion into I’m right/you’re wrong mode. We have different views - I agree to disagree.

    “but don’t implement anything that your customers don’t accept”

    Carsten, when did webmasters or SEOs become a part of Google’s customer base? I don’t hear a single average Joe non-webmastering Google user complaining about nofollow or Google’s paidlink spam report form. Google doesn’t lose anything by pissing webmasters off.

    “but I don’t get that one. Did I miss something I should know about?”

    Oki doki, here’s another example. Say I run a review site with a list of all SEO consulting sites out there. I tell people who I recommend and who to stay away from. A big portion of traffic to the site might consist of people asking “is xyz.com trustworthy? Does 123.com have experience running $10,000/day Adwords campaigns? ” By only listing sites I recommend, I miss out on traffic looking for information on lower quality sites - that traffic will get picked up by my competitors.

    Sure, I can avoid using live links when I link to SEO firms I don’t like, but that’s poor usability if a visitor wants to visit that site; Instead of clicking a link, he’d have to type in the url in his browser.

  15. Hey Tetsuto,

    Okay, disagreement. I would not recommend you to a bank for security consulting though hehe

    Regarding the linking stuff.

    I am thinking and writing about the subject for several months now already during the different stages of Google’s morph from one thing to a completely different one. That’s why will I simply refer to posts or comments of mine. Not because I want to link to it, but I don’t want to repeat everything I already wrote in great length at posts of mine and comments on other blogs.

    Just as a heads up. I think that we actually agree on the fundamental issue and only disagree on how to approach it. :)

    See my comment at Matt Cutts’s blog (link to the comment, because you would not find it otherwise (the post has already over 520!!!!! comments) :)

    Link to Comment at Matt’s Blog

    Also did you see my other comment at SEJ? You should have gotten an email.

    Link to Comment at SEJ

    And finally look at my post at ReveNews.com. The post refers to several of my posts at SEJ, all about this subject.

    Link to RN post

    Want to see a very real case that shows why Google is wrong?
    See the discussion at Sugarrae.com

    Link to Rae’s post and comments

    A lot of stuff to think about, but I would be glad to hear your take on the stuff. Thanks

  16. p.s. Have a look at this image and let me know what you think. I am curious to see, if you get all the messages my artistic excursion is attempting to send out hehe

  17. Jeez, look at all those links this page is gonna leak PageRank all over the place :D

    Seriously, with all this talk about nofollow, notice my comments are nofollow-free.

    “Also did you see my other comment at SEJ? You should have gotten an email.”

    Nope, I never get email alerts from SEJ. I added it to my co.mments though.

    @image.. hmm.. let me guess. Alotta people in fear, uncertainty, and doubt. SEO is (isn’t) rocket science. The big G likes money. Dumb PHDs..and Matt Cutts turned into the Incredible Hulk? :)

  18. Sorry for the links, but I added so much content to this page that it must rank for all kinds of stuff that I think that it might be okay. Imagine how much more links it would have been, if I would not have written the post at RN (which was kind of self serving to consolidate stuff hehe)

    co.mments rocks. It took me a bit to get used to it and throw some old habits over board, but after that did my appreciation only increase :)

    Each Gorilla is a person or group of people.
    Gorilla Left who thinks he is Einstein is D.P.
    The SEO Rocket launches so SEO must be rocket science in a sense. It’s a toy rocket so its only small rocket science :)

    The Crowd has no clue and thinks WTF as always. People, as in the “mob”, are dumb as we all now.

    The Gorilla on the right who counts the money could have two meanings, you are right. My original intention was to have it represent Webmasters/SEO that sell links (noticed the chain beneath? Noticed the tag and what is chained? The Tag is not the original one…. what happened? Did you find the old one? That was kind of thrown away?

    Matt and a hulk. That’s a good one hehe. Yeah! .. no, coincidence. I used a caricature of him which happened to have this color.

    9 pics merged, effects added and some old-school pixel work “Roy Style” :)

    I will check in a week or so, when you are done reading the stuff I referred to hehehehe.

    Cheers!
    Carsten

  19. Btw. check out SEJ. I wrote a four part series of posts and you are in it :)

  20. Going for the Ego hook huh? :) Thanks for the mention.

    Here’s a random thought about nofollow.

    Google wants not only to devalue paid links but punish you for selling/buying links. But if Google punished all sites that got paid to link to another site, then many innocent sites just selling ad space and traffic will be inadvertently be hit. The only way to prevent that from happening is nofollow. If people used nofollow, Google can punish link buyers and sellers while keeping innocent sites out of harm’s way.

    If Google’s intent was just to devalue paid links, nofollow would not be necessary.

  21. No Ego hook. I don’t have one. I am actually pretty reasonable. No kidding hehe..

    I started a comment here and was going on and on. Well, I realized that this is a bit too much for a comment and spent the extra time to make a (series of) post(s) out of it. It also allowed me to consolidate the various things that are related to this discussion and also provide some suggestions for alternative solutions for the same problem etc.

    It was essentially an aggregation and I need now only to link to one place to reference to my stuff. I mentioned this in a related post here, natural SEO :)

    “punish link buyers and sellers”

    If that is Google’s intend, then affiliates are safe, right? Google was clear about this… wait, they were not and Matt did on purpose not answer my question if affiliate links are considered paid links or not. No answer is also an answer. An answer I don’t like for reasons, which I already mentioned more than once.

  22. […] Halfdeck is also a constant force in the Google group and has a great blog that I was just writing about because of his post 21 Reasons Why Anti-Nofollow SEOs Can’t Think Straight which I loved and he too has been a great contributor both on the forum and off. […]

  23. Over the affiliate link debate did I miss item 19. on your list :)

    “If a link points to a relevant, quality site then compensation is irrelevant.

    “Rebuttal: Everyone has a price. …”

    …which does not matter, if the link is relevant and does not point to a crappy site (not crappy as in ugly, but spammy e.g. bad neighborhood)

    You did not elaborate on what you mean by “relevant” so I assume that it is meant that the linked to page is contextual relevant to the page where the link resides on.

  24. “which does not matter, if ”

    But which matters IF not everyone will links out to relevant, high quality site. If there’s an IF, then that’s too big a loophole. It shouldn’t matter no matter what.

    Otherwise, the potential for exploitation is there.

    Just run Xenu on www.seo4fun.com and see what kind of “relevant”, “quality” links you come up with. And if that’s not enough, like I said before, look at seroundtable linking to a wedding site and cre8asiteforums linking to a cardboard site. Like I said, everyone has a price.

  25. […] 21 Reasons Why Anti-Nofollow SEOs Can’t Think Straight […]

  26. The official claim is that links with the rel=nofollow attribute do not influence the search engine rankings of the target page. In addition to Google, Yahoo and MSN also support the rel=nofollow attribute.

    i think it helps indexing

  27. Nice article you’ve got. I the implementation of rel=nofollow on search engine algo is a right thing. At least it makes webmasters think of other ways to promote their sites. And less spamming too.

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