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Comment Spammers the End of Do-Follow Movement?

After Darrens post revealing a “service” allowing unethical companies to buy Spam Comments Wendy Piersall has decided to put no-follow back on her links.

I am considering doing the same.

It’s a shame when legitimate comments will get the same link-condom as fake comments but sometimes when you get a lot of messages in your queue it is hard to spot the fakes from the authentic. I would hate to encourage a slimy service such as this by providing them with link juice.

What are your thoughts?

Do you comment just for the link and Google juice? Or do you comment to be part of a conversation? Are you going to switch off Do-Follow?

Let me know … in the comments …

Update:

Thanks for all your comments, I appreciate it. I needed to get your perspective and you came through incredibly. Just shows what a lovely bunch of people read my blog :)

I’m not going to take the cowards way out and disable the Do-Follow plugin. As many of you said, that is letting them win and is punishing the good people for the potential abuses of a few. I only had to re-read my original post on Do-Follow to realise deep down I had known what my answer should be, I just needed you guys to re-enforce that it was the correct decision.

A few people privately asked why this is such a big deal for me.

There are quite a few bloggers like me who came out of the early blogging time where blogs were a kind of distributed community medium. Community is a big aspect of blogging for me, my most treasured feature of my blogs is the comment area. I get real touchy about it. Probably way too much. I think Liz will be another person who shares this trait.

Many people treat the comments as a by-product, after thought, something that might help search rankings, “user generated content”. Not me. It is at least half the point of blogging as far as I am concerned. It is my main gauge that I am doing something right.

Fake comments are poison to this, but I guess in the end if they are well done, who is going to know? If an authentic comment is inspired by a fake comment, is any real damage done? I’m not sure I will ever have a great answer to this but I do know I value my real commenters and think they should get every benefit available to them.

So again, thanks! You rock :D

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Comments

  1. Hi, I’m reading you via the No Nofollow | I Follow | DoFollow Community at Bumpzee, on the RSS feed.
    I actually challenge myself to comment, for many of the reasons you said in your 10 reasons commenting is good for bloggers, and also to push myself.
    I suppose some could look at what I do as comment spam but that isn’t my intention. It’s just good to say hi to people, meet new bloggers, etc. The more I do it the better I get at it, like anything in life. I don’t mind whether it is a do-follow or a no-follow blog, that does not influence my decision to comment, and that’s how I know I’m not spamming or doing it for google juice. If someone says something and I have something I can say about it, I like to say it. ;)
    I think the bigger question is what happens to the No Nofollow | I Follow | DoFollow Community at Bumpzee? I have really been enjoying reading it, but will bloggers have to leave if they turn the no-follow back on? :(
    Snoskred

  2. Hi, I’m reading you via the No Nofollow | I Follow | DoFollow Community at Bumpzee, on the RSS feed.

    I actually challenge myself to comment, for many of the reasons you said in your 10 reasons commenting is good for bloggers, and also to push myself.

    I suppose some could look at what I do as comment spam but that isn’t my intention. It’s just good to say hi to people, meet new bloggers, etc. The more I do it the better I get at it, like anything in life. I don’t mind whether it is a do-follow or a no-follow blog, that does not influence my decision to comment, and that’s how I know I’m not spamming or doing it for google juice. If someone says something and I have something I can say about it, I like to say it. ;)

    I think the bigger question is what happens to the No Nofollow | I Follow | DoFollow Community at Bumpzee? I have really been enjoying reading it, but will bloggers have to leave if they turn the no-follow back on? :(

    Snoskred

  3. If you install the correct plug-ins then comment spam just isn’t a problem anymore. So, I don’t see any reason to switch off do-follow.

  4. If you install the correct plug-ins then comment spam just isn’t a problem anymore. So, I don’t see any reason to switch off do-follow.

  5. For now, I’m leaving it on. I probably won’t consider turning it off until I experience the problem myself.

    I doubt there is anything illegal about it. More of an ethical issue. The comments aren’t SPAM, but instead someone was paid to read your blog and make a relevant comment. Is that much different than me telling my secretary (if only I had one) to read my morning blogs for me and comment if appropriate?

  6. For now, I’m leaving it on. I probably won’t consider turning it off until I experience the problem myself.

    I doubt there is anything illegal about it. More of an ethical issue. The comments aren’t SPAM, but instead someone was paid to read your blog and make a relevant comment. Is that much different than me telling my secretary (if only I had one) to read my morning blogs for me and comment if appropriate?

  7. I comment for a couple of other reasons:

    1. To get noticed by the author of the blog. A comment can be the start of a mutually beneficial relationship.

    2. To get a little traffic from the comment. Providing the comment is on a ‘top’ blog then that post is likely to continually recieve low amounts of traffic, after posting comments daily its easy to build up hundreds of comments over time which feed a contstant dribble of traffic.

  8. I comment for a couple of other reasons:

    1. To get noticed by the author of the blog. A comment can be the start of a mutually beneficial relationship.

    2. To get a little traffic from the comment. Providing the comment is on a ‘top’ blog then that post is likely to continually recieve low amounts of traffic, after posting comments daily its easy to build up hundreds of comments over time which feed a contstant dribble of traffic.

  9. Interesting dilemma. I personally leave comments because I’ve got something to say and I like to make harrass friends.

    On the other hand, I appreciate random comments on my blogs just to make it look more lively. There was a discussion a while back about fake comments and in some ways, this service would be similar. As long as the comments are on topic, I don’t know if I would mind that much. My guess is, however, that the comments will be total rubbish.

  10. Interesting dilemma. I personally leave comments because I’ve got something to say and I like to make harrass friends.

    On the other hand, I appreciate random comments on my blogs just to make it look more lively. There was a discussion a while back about fake comments and in some ways, this service would be similar. As long as the comments are on topic, I don’t know if I would mind that much. My guess is, however, that the comments will be total rubbish.

  11. hi, Chris, how are you today?

    I’d be surprised if Akismet doesn’t have a way of detecting hundreds/thousands of comments on multiple blogs within a short space of time – surely that would mess up the ‘service’ Darren reported on.

    Aside from that (& perhaps more useful) here’s a couple of plugin ideas that would sit in between ‘no follow’ & ‘do follow’:

    1. A plugin that changes the wordpress moderation options FROM: approve/spam/delete/defer TO: approve/no follow/spam/delete/defer
    2. A plugin that automatically switches someone from ‘no follow’ to ‘do follow’ after 3 (or 5, 10, n) previously approved comments

    A great bit about the second one is you could tell people about it on the ‘thanks’ page after they submit their first comment. A spammer may think “oh great, all i need to do is submit 9 more comments” – but, by submitting 9 more half-hearted comments, they automatically flag themselves as spammers.

    Speak to you soon,

    daniel

  12. hi, Chris, how are you today?

    I’d be surprised if Akismet doesn’t have a way of detecting hundreds/thousands of comments on multiple blogs within a short space of time – surely that would mess up the ‘service’ Darren reported on.

    Aside from that (& perhaps more useful) here’s a couple of plugin ideas that would sit in between ‘no follow’ & ‘do follow’:

    1. A plugin that changes the wordpress moderation options FROM: approve/spam/delete/defer TO: approve/no follow/spam/delete/defer
    2. A plugin that automatically switches someone from ‘no follow’ to ‘do follow’ after 3 (or 5, 10, n) previously approved comments

    A great bit about the second one is you could tell people about it on the ‘thanks’ page after they submit their first comment. A spammer may think “oh great, all i need to do is submit 9 more comments” – but, by submitting 9 more half-hearted comments, they automatically flag themselves as spammers.

    Speak to you soon,

    daniel

  13. Interesting, insightful comments will drive readers to visit your blog to see if you also have insightful posts.

    Google juice needs to be earned not by your ability to comment in quantity, instead to comment in quality.

    Add the no-follow link.

  14. Interesting, insightful comments will drive readers to visit your blog to see if you also have insightful posts.

    Google juice needs to be earned not by your ability to comment in quantity, instead to comment in quality.

    Add the no-follow link.

  15. I think you should ask yourself how much spam you get at all that isn’t caught by Akismet or Spam Karma or whatever you use. I’m sure it’s not a huge amount, and so I don’t think that you have to overreact by shutting up the search bots.

    This is very similar to terrorist threats: If the media hypes it up, everyone starts to buy a gun like Osama is going to ring your doorbell tomorrow.

  16. I think you should ask yourself how much spam you get at all that isn’t caught by Akismet or Spam Karma or whatever you use. I’m sure it’s not a huge amount, and so I don’t think that you have to overreact by shutting up the search bots.

    This is very similar to terrorist threats: If the media hypes it up, everyone starts to buy a gun like Osama is going to ring your doorbell tomorrow.

  17. Personally I comment to share thoughts and to conversate on the topic and comment spammers do irritate me much but i think no-follow on the links is kinda expressed distrust …
    Nevertheless I hope one day some plugin or other solution will be found :)

  18. Personally I comment to share thoughts and to conversate on the topic and comment spammers do irritate me much but i think no-follow on the links is kinda expressed distrust …
    Nevertheless I hope one day some plugin or other solution will be found :)

  19. How about a plugin that allows you to apply dofollow to select comments?

    Default is nofollow, until you check the comments and approve or not.

  20. How about a plugin that allows you to apply dofollow to select comments?

    Default is nofollow, until you check the comments and approve or not.

  21. I comment first and foremost because I find the topic interesting, and if a conversation is happening already, to join in it. The link/Google juice is a bonus.

    I won’t turn off no-follow just yet because my “normal” spam is manageable (with SK2 and Bad Behaviour) such that I can spot one of these paid ones popping up if they do.

    I don’t want to disadvantage my genuine readers on the account of this new thing, which let’s face it, is not the first and would not be the last of its kind.

  22. I comment first and foremost because I find the topic interesting, and if a conversation is happening already, to join in it. The link/Google juice is a bonus.

    I won’t turn off no-follow just yet because my “normal” spam is manageable (with SK2 and Bad Behaviour) such that I can spot one of these paid ones popping up if they do.

    I don’t want to disadvantage my genuine readers on the account of this new thing, which let’s face it, is not the first and would not be the last of its kind.

  23. After I had posted my previous comment, I saw a couple of questions above regarding turning on-off nofollow selectively. This link might be helpful:

  24. After I had posted my previous comment, I saw a couple of questions above regarding turning on-off nofollow selectively. This link might be helpful:

  25. The dofollow plugin I use has a customizable time delay – I’ve got it set to give me a day to review comments before it removes the nofollow tag. That helps. And whenever I get a big flood of spam comments, I do re-set comment moderation to put anything with a link into the mod queue. Set like that for a couple of days and the spam soon tapers off… until next time.

    I comment to put my two bits into a conversation that interests me. (If I were looking to build traffic by comments, wouldn’t it be smarter to leave my comments on a blog in the same topic area as my own?)

  26. The dofollow plugin I use has a customizable time delay – I’ve got it set to give me a day to review comments before it removes the nofollow tag. That helps. And whenever I get a big flood of spam comments, I do re-set comment moderation to put anything with a link into the mod queue. Set like that for a couple of days and the spam soon tapers off… until next time.

    I comment to put my two bits into a conversation that interests me. (If I were looking to build traffic by comments, wouldn’t it be smarter to leave my comments on a blog in the same topic area as my own?)

  27. I’m certainly not turning of DoComment based on the article over at ProBlogger. Sure it’s a pretty despicable service the company is offering but it’s a knee jerk reaction to suddenly go back to employing link condoms.

    Genuine comments which add to the discussion are easy to spot. Those which are spam and are only posting to get a trickle of Google juice are equally easy to spot. It’s no problem at all to add a link condom to an individual comment which you think is spam – simply apply one in your WP dashboard. If the commenter is genuine and has come back to your site to follow the discussion and notices the pink link and asks you why then there’s probably a good reason to take it off again. The chances are that the spammers won’t return or spot the pink link anyway.

    Removing DoFollow is a step backward and an admission that the spammers have won. Don’t do it.

  28. I’m certainly not turning of DoComment based on the article over at ProBlogger. Sure it’s a pretty despicable service the company is offering but it’s a knee jerk reaction to suddenly go back to employing link condoms.

    Genuine comments which add to the discussion are easy to spot. Those which are spam and are only posting to get a trickle of Google juice are equally easy to spot. It’s no problem at all to add a link condom to an individual comment which you think is spam – simply apply one in your WP dashboard. If the commenter is genuine and has come back to your site to follow the discussion and notices the pink link and asks you why then there’s probably a good reason to take it off again. The chances are that the spammers won’t return or spot the pink link anyway.

    Removing DoFollow is a step backward and an admission that the spammers have won. Don’t do it.

  29. Hmmm .. thanks for your thoughts all. I am still wrestling with this, I am split 50/50. Please do keep your comments coming :)

  30. Hmmm .. thanks for your thoughts all. I am still wrestling with this, I am split 50/50. Please do keep your comments coming :)

  31. Hmmm .. thanks for your thoughts all. I am still wrestling with this, I am split 50/50. Please do keep your comments coming :)

  32. James Vincent says:

    If you’ve got a community that values quality over quantity, I think you can solve it by adding extra steps.

    For example, clicking the link on a persons name takes them to a profile page (or less formally, a blank profile, in the case of a non-registered user), and from there you can find their out-bound link.

    The dedicated win, the opportunists submitting banal comments lose incentive.

  33. James Vincent says:

    If you’ve got a community that values quality over quantity, I think you can solve it by adding extra steps.

    For example, clicking the link on a persons name takes them to a profile page (or less formally, a blank profile, in the case of a non-registered user), and from there you can find their out-bound link.

    The dedicated win, the opportunists submitting banal comments lose incentive.

  34. I too prefer not to have dofollow, primarily because there is just too much spam to battle. it just isnt worth the trouble. also, you would loose valuable Google Juice and PR.

  35. I too prefer not to have dofollow, primarily because there is just too much spam to battle. it just isnt worth the trouble. also, you would loose valuable Google Juice and PR.

  36. I too prefer not to have dofollow, primarily because there is just too much spam to battle. it just isnt worth the trouble. also, you would loose valuable Google Juice and PR.

  37. I believe WordPress by default inserts nofollow on all comment links. So that’s what I have on my blog. If people are commenting on blogs in hopes that it will appease the search engines – they really need a better marketing plan. The amount of link juice that your site receives from a comment link is too trivial to make a difference.

    I have used links in post before. But, never for the link juice, but rather because I was pointing someone to additional information on the topic; supporting the topic.

    So really Chris, I don’t care which way you decide, it’s your call.

  38. I believe WordPress by default inserts nofollow on all comment links. So that’s what I have on my blog. If people are commenting on blogs in hopes that it will appease the search engines – they really need a better marketing plan. The amount of link juice that your site receives from a comment link is too trivial to make a difference.

    I have used links in post before. But, never for the link juice, but rather because I was pointing someone to additional information on the topic; supporting the topic.

    So really Chris, I don’t care which way you decide, it’s your call.

  39. I believe WordPress by default inserts nofollow on all comment links. So that’s what I have on my blog. If people are commenting on blogs in hopes that it will appease the search engines – they really need a better marketing plan. The amount of link juice that your site receives from a comment link is too trivial to make a difference.

    I have used links in post before. But, never for the link juice, but rather because I was pointing someone to additional information on the topic; supporting the topic.

    So really Chris, I don’t care which way you decide, it’s your call.

  40. To be honest, Wendy’s article made me consider turning off DoFollow on my blog, but Mike’s comment above sits well with me:

    “Genuine comments which add to the discussion are easy to spot. Those which are spam and are only posting to get a trickle of Google juice are equally easy to spot.”

    It is knee jerk to remove DoFollow so soon after all these articles are published with negative publicity.

    Lately I’ve been getting more and more spam-like comments, but it doesn’t take long to hit the delete button if any bypass Akismet.

  41. To be honest, Wendy’s article made me consider turning off DoFollow on my blog, but Mike’s comment above sits well with me:

    “Genuine comments which add to the discussion are easy to spot. Those which are spam and are only posting to get a trickle of Google juice are equally easy to spot.”

    It is knee jerk to remove DoFollow so soon after all these articles are published with negative publicity.

    Lately I’ve been getting more and more spam-like comments, but it doesn’t take long to hit the delete button if any bypass Akismet.

  42. I make comments to contribute to a conversation. I see no reason why all comments shouldn’t be no-follow- if your primary source of links is blog comments, then I think there’s a problem there.

    It’s a nice little boost, but I don’t think anybody’s really going to suffer if it’s taken away.

  43. I make comments to contribute to a conversation. I see no reason why all comments shouldn’t be no-follow- if your primary source of links is blog comments, then I think there’s a problem there.

    It’s a nice little boost, but I don’t think anybody’s really going to suffer if it’s taken away.

  44. I totally understand why some people want to keep DoFollow in place – there’s a few reasons why it’s simply not worth it for me personally:

    I get 1-3 of these sneaky comments every day – they ARE hard to spot. This means that I have to scrutinize EVERY new commenter that comes to the blog daily, which means I have to poke around on 15+ sites every day – half of which are still questionable but I give them the benefit of the doubt – I probably spend between 10 and 20 minutes a day moderating these comments, which adds up to 1-2 hours a week.

    In my mind, if I am giving THAT much time to comment moderation, the spammers have won something more precious than link juice – they have won my time, which is irreplaceable and something I am quite frankly not willing to give them anymore.

    There’s other reasons – like the danger of them getting a link then throwing a redirect onto the link a few weeks later – which has also happened to a friend of mine.

    I just think we can find better ways to reward commenters that don’t risk our businesses and livelihood.

    Thank YOU for the link love, though, Chris! :)

  45. I totally understand why some people want to keep DoFollow in place – there’s a few reasons why it’s simply not worth it for me personally:

    I get 1-3 of these sneaky comments every day – they ARE hard to spot. This means that I have to scrutinize EVERY new commenter that comes to the blog daily, which means I have to poke around on 15+ sites every day – half of which are still questionable but I give them the benefit of the doubt – I probably spend between 10 and 20 minutes a day moderating these comments, which adds up to 1-2 hours a week.

    In my mind, if I am giving THAT much time to comment moderation, the spammers have won something more precious than link juice – they have won my time, which is irreplaceable and something I am quite frankly not willing to give them anymore.

    There’s other reasons – like the danger of them getting a link then throwing a redirect onto the link a few weeks later – which has also happened to a friend of mine.

    I just think we can find better ways to reward commenters that don’t risk our businesses and livelihood.

    Thank YOU for the link love, though, Chris! :)

  46. I’ve actually never turned Do Follow on, even though I’ve been meaning too. But, this type of spam comment service makes me hesitant to do so.

    As for whether I comment for the link juice: no, I don’t. Personally, I comment if the post has interested me enough to join the conversation (assuming that I feel like I have something relevant to add to it). The link juice that comes from blogs that have Do Follow on their comments is nice, but it’s not the reason that I leave comments.

  47. I’ve actually never turned Do Follow on, even though I’ve been meaning too. But, this type of spam comment service makes me hesitant to do so.

    As for whether I comment for the link juice: no, I don’t. Personally, I comment if the post has interested me enough to join the conversation (assuming that I feel like I have something relevant to add to it). The link juice that comes from blogs that have Do Follow on their comments is nice, but it’s not the reason that I leave comments.

  48. I gotta agree, it’s pretty easy to spot the good guys from the bad guys and Akismet does a bang-up job. Thank you Akismet, we love you!

  49. I gotta agree, it’s pretty easy to spot the good guys from the bad guys and Akismet does a bang-up job. Thank you Akismet, we love you!

  50. I think you are completely off base. The entire point of the do follow community is that nofollow does NOT WORK to stop spamming in the first placed.

    So long as anyone is providing good and relevant content on my blog they can have any reasonable links they want so long as they are with in my comments policy.

    Sure on a thread that goes nuts with comments it is more work to police it but if you can’t tell if it is spam odd are it has value to your blog, if so does it really matter that the poster wants link juice? Not to me! You want good links, post to my blog, provide value to the discussion and your in, don’t and your out.

    By the way all comments in my blog UNDER 10 words get deleted. As do any with more then three links. Those rules are automated.

    Just my opinion but I think rel=”nofollow” has always been and will always be totally useless in actually combating spam.

    Jack

  51. I think you are completely off base. The entire point of the do follow community is that nofollow does NOT WORK to stop spamming in the first placed.

    So long as anyone is providing good and relevant content on my blog they can have any reasonable links they want so long as they are with in my comments policy.

    Sure on a thread that goes nuts with comments it is more work to police it but if you can’t tell if it is spam odd are it has value to your blog, if so does it really matter that the poster wants link juice? Not to me! You want good links, post to my blog, provide value to the discussion and your in, don’t and your out.

    By the way all comments in my blog UNDER 10 words get deleted. As do any with more then three links. Those rules are automated.

    Just my opinion but I think rel=”nofollow” has always been and will always be totally useless in actually combating spam.

    Jack

  52. Will NoFollow will discourage commenting if there’s not that added incentive of Google juice?(Though how do you know if someone has it turned off or on?) Why not just lurk and save yourself time by not commenting?

    The value of comments has always been to create dialog and community. People will share ideas and views no matter if they get nothing in addition to it, i.e., Google juice.

    Maybe the problem is with Google giving links in comments as much weight as other links? Though how to fix that is beyond me.

  53. Will NoFollow will discourage commenting if there’s not that added incentive of Google juice?(Though how do you know if someone has it turned off or on?) Why not just lurk and save yourself time by not commenting?

    The value of comments has always been to create dialog and community. People will share ideas and views no matter if they get nothing in addition to it, i.e., Google juice.

    Maybe the problem is with Google giving links in comments as much weight as other links? Though how to fix that is beyond me.

  54. We follow our blog comments because we encourage discussion on the blog topics. I will not take it off unless the spam really becomes a problem, but so far it has not. Between Askimet, internal filters, a captcha script and our own checking the amount of spam being seen is nothing to be concerned with.

    I also comment more often and with more thought on blogs that follow links, not so much for the link but for the point of the whole thing. Why should I give you free, thoughtful content if you are going to wrap my link up in a nofollow condom? Don’t you trust me? I’m clean, I swear… ask my last girlfriend.

  55. We follow our blog comments because we encourage discussion on the blog topics. I will not take it off unless the spam really becomes a problem, but so far it has not. Between Askimet, internal filters, a captcha script and our own checking the amount of spam being seen is nothing to be concerned with.

    I also comment more often and with more thought on blogs that follow links, not so much for the link but for the point of the whole thing. Why should I give you free, thoughtful content if you are going to wrap my link up in a nofollow condom? Don’t you trust me? I’m clean, I swear… ask my last girlfriend.

  56. We follow our blog comments because we encourage discussion on the blog topics. I will not take it off unless the spam really becomes a problem, but so far it has not. Between Askimet, internal filters, a captcha script and our own checking the amount of spam being seen is nothing to be concerned with.

    I also comment more often and with more thought on blogs that follow links, not so much for the link but for the point of the whole thing. Why should I give you free, thoughtful content if you are going to wrap my link up in a nofollow condom? Don’t you trust me? I’m clean, I swear… ask my last girlfriend.

  57. There are always someone comment just for the link , and spammers always can find their way!

    So I don’t think return nofollow works , It still useless on combating spam

  58. There are always someone comment just for the link , and spammers always can find their way!

    So I don’t think return nofollow works , It still useless on combating spam

  59. Wow, this is a subject people seem to be very passionate about. There are so many comments! From the ones I read, everyone has very valid reasons for and against no-follow. It’s an difficult dilemma.

    I would not question a blogger’s decision to institute no-follow. I can totally see Wendy’s point that spammers have won more than juice, they’ve won her time, which is way more valuable. If you are facing this problem, too, Chris, your time is more valuable. But also think of what Jack S. said, will it really help combat spam? I have no idea.

    I personally like it when blog have no-follow removed, because it’s a small reward I get for commenting. But I like the conversation better. If I know a blog has no-follow in place, but the author actively replies to comments, I will comment and eagerly await a response.

    But if the author never replies and the no-follow is active, I wonder what’s the point? Perhaps to get my name out to those who read the comments — I’ve had more than a few clicks from comment links — but with that type of blog, how many people comment? I’m sure there are others who think the same way I do and hardly ever visit the site, just read the feed.

  60. Wow, this is a subject people seem to be very passionate about. There are so many comments! From the ones I read, everyone has very valid reasons for and against no-follow. It’s an difficult dilemma.

    I would not question a blogger’s decision to institute no-follow. I can totally see Wendy’s point that spammers have won more than juice, they’ve won her time, which is way more valuable. If you are facing this problem, too, Chris, your time is more valuable. But also think of what Jack S. said, will it really help combat spam? I have no idea.

    I personally like it when blog have no-follow removed, because it’s a small reward I get for commenting. But I like the conversation better. If I know a blog has no-follow in place, but the author actively replies to comments, I will comment and eagerly await a response.

    But if the author never replies and the no-follow is active, I wonder what’s the point? Perhaps to get my name out to those who read the comments — I’ve had more than a few clicks from comment links — but with that type of blog, how many people comment? I’m sure there are others who think the same way I do and hardly ever visit the site, just read the feed.

  61. Wow, this is a subject people seem to be very passionate about. There are so many comments! From the ones I read, everyone has very valid reasons for and against no-follow. It’s an difficult dilemma.

    I would not question a blogger’s decision to institute no-follow. I can totally see Wendy’s point that spammers have won more than juice, they’ve won her time, which is way more valuable. If you are facing this problem, too, Chris, your time is more valuable. But also think of what Jack S. said, will it really help combat spam? I have no idea.

    I personally like it when blog have no-follow removed, because it’s a small reward I get for commenting. But I like the conversation better. If I know a blog has no-follow in place, but the author actively replies to comments, I will comment and eagerly await a response.

    But if the author never replies and the no-follow is active, I wonder what’s the point? Perhaps to get my name out to those who read the comments — I’ve had more than a few clicks from comment links — but with that type of blog, how many people comment? I’m sure there are others who think the same way I do and hardly ever visit the site, just read the feed.

  62. Call me naive but I didn’t know that commenting did anything to help google rankings.

    I comment because I like to jump in on the conversation, and because it’s like networking. Getting out and about means people might be interested and checking out my blog sometime.

    Who ARE all these spammers? How does what they do sit comfortably with them?

    I don’t get it.

  63. Call me naive but I didn’t know that commenting did anything to help google rankings.

    I comment because I like to jump in on the conversation, and because it’s like networking. Getting out and about means people might be interested and checking out my blog sometime.

    Who ARE all these spammers? How does what they do sit comfortably with them?

    I don’t get it.

  64. Call me naive but I didn’t know that commenting did anything to help google rankings.

    I comment because I like to jump in on the conversation, and because it’s like networking. Getting out and about means people might be interested and checking out my blog sometime.

    Who ARE all these spammers? How does what they do sit comfortably with them?

    I don’t get it.

  65. Just a hunch, but I don’t think this service will get enough subscribers to have much of a negative impact. You could always just delete ALL pointless comments written with poor grammar, regardless of whether they’re spam or not. Readers would probably appreciate it.

  66. Just a hunch, but I don’t think this service will get enough subscribers to have much of a negative impact. You could always just delete ALL pointless comments written with poor grammar, regardless of whether they’re spam or not. Readers would probably appreciate it.

  67. I can definitely understand if moderating comments takes several hours a week that one might want to consider at least switching to the Link Love plugin that only turns off nofollow after a certain number of comments have been made. For me, for now, my comments are managable and I have no problem deleting the link if I feel it is warranted. I don’t see any reason to turn nofollow back on though, as it does not effectively combat comment spam anyway.

  68. I can definitely understand if moderating comments takes several hours a week that one might want to consider at least switching to the Link Love plugin that only turns off nofollow after a certain number of comments have been made. For me, for now, my comments are managable and I have no problem deleting the link if I feel it is warranted. I don’t see any reason to turn nofollow back on though, as it does not effectively combat comment spam anyway.

  69. Anne-Marie,

    You asked if “NoFollow will discourage commenting if there’s not that added incentive of Google juice”?

    The answer is no, here is the reality,

    To me what Chris is saying is that, comment spam gave birth to rel=”nofollow”, people realized it did nothing to solve the problem and screwed over posters. So the do-follow movement occurred which has led to people comment spamming, which means we might as well use nofollow again, which did not work in the first place.

    Sound like a circle of insanity? There’s a reason, it is!

    Also you asked, “how do you know if someone has it turned off or on”?

    That is simple, download a FireFox extension called Search Status,

    http://www.comtechnews.net/search-marketing/search-status-extension-for-firefox-users

    One of the options “highlights” nofollow links. I use if for things like finding forums and blogs that do not nofollow my links. Hey I have limited time, if I am providing content for anyone a full link makes it more worth while.

    Also if I do link exchanges (3 or 4 way not resi) I can be sure whoever I do them with is not being a link juice jerk and hosing me over by nofollowing my links.

    One last thing, by having this extension you can find lots of places that don’t nofollow links like which bookmarking sites, article sites, etc. don’t do it.

    The key is be informed and educated to what tools are available.

    And again if anyone wants to comment in my blog just for links knock yourself out so long as the comments are relevant and the links are not to “bad stuff”

    Jack

  70. Anne-Marie,

    You asked if “NoFollow will discourage commenting if there’s not that added incentive of Google juice”?

    The answer is no, here is the reality,

    To me what Chris is saying is that, comment spam gave birth to rel=”nofollow”, people realized it did nothing to solve the problem and screwed over posters. So the do-follow movement occurred which has led to people comment spamming, which means we might as well use nofollow again, which did not work in the first place.

    Sound like a circle of insanity? There’s a reason, it is!

    Also you asked, “how do you know if someone has it turned off or on”?

    That is simple, download a FireFox extension called Search Status,

    http://www.comtechnews.net/search-marketing/search-status-extension-for-firefox-users

    One of the options “highlights” nofollow links. I use if for things like finding forums and blogs that do not nofollow my links. Hey I have limited time, if I am providing content for anyone a full link makes it more worth while.

    Also if I do link exchanges (3 or 4 way not resi) I can be sure whoever I do them with is not being a link juice jerk and hosing me over by nofollowing my links.

    One last thing, by having this extension you can find lots of places that don’t nofollow links like which bookmarking sites, article sites, etc. don’t do it.

    The key is be informed and educated to what tools are available.

    And again if anyone wants to comment in my blog just for links knock yourself out so long as the comments are relevant and the links are not to “bad stuff”

    Jack

  71. Yep, gonna have to leave dofollow intact for now as well. I don’t think readers who add sincere/helpful contributions to a discussion should be penalized because spammers suck.

    As for comment motives – I don’t leave comments in the hope of getting some fanfare out of it, although I do view that as a perk. Rather, I comment because I’ve identified with something a blogger said, or because I’ve found their post helpful and I want them to know that. Occasionally I’ll comment just because I can’t stand not to put my two cents in, or have a mini-rant (like this one)! :)

  72. Yep, gonna have to leave dofollow intact for now as well. I don’t think readers who add sincere/helpful contributions to a discussion should be penalized because spammers suck.

    As for comment motives – I don’t leave comments in the hope of getting some fanfare out of it, although I do view that as a perk. Rather, I comment because I’ve identified with something a blogger said, or because I’ve found their post helpful and I want them to know that. Occasionally I’ll comment just because I can’t stand not to put my two cents in, or have a mini-rant (like this one)! :)

  73. My quick comment. Not turning it off, I am leaving my do-follow plug-in in place. I don’t think no-follow is the solution. I think better Search Engine algorithms is the answer. I expect at some point a much better alternative to the Search Engines will appear on the scene, it’s just a matter of time…

  74. My quick comment. Not turning it off, I am leaving my do-follow plug-in in place. I don’t think no-follow is the solution. I think better Search Engine algorithms is the answer. I expect at some point a much better alternative to the Search Engines will appear on the scene, it’s just a matter of time…

  75. My quick comment. Not turning it off, I am leaving my do-follow plug-in in place. I don’t think no-follow is the solution. I think better Search Engine algorithms is the answer. I expect at some point a much better alternative to the Search Engines will appear on the scene, it’s just a matter of time…

  76. @daniel – such a plugin exists, it is called linklove. It removes no-follow of commenters after a certain number of comments, default is 10.

    As I often say, I like to see the blogosphere as a huge conversation among many people. I truly admire the way Seth Godin has set his blog so feedback comes only by trackback. I interpret this like: “do you want to follow the discussion? Don’t spend a minute on a comment, spend twenty on a post.

    That is worthy feedback, and is a very horizontal way of talking, blogger to blogger instead of blogger to visitor, but certainly doesn’t work form most blogs (it won’t work to mine, for sure).

    I like the naive view that what counts on comments, like in any conversation, is good impression you make, human to human, and I would like to believe that google should follow and not the other way around.

    I think every commenter deserves a link and I would like to open do-follow comments on my blog soon.

    Enough of philosophy! Some practical stuff.

    I am using Akismet, but it hasn’t been necessary since I started using Comment Policy plugin. Not a single spam comment appeared since then, I am very happy with it.

    The linklove plugin I commented above seems also nice.

    I heard about some blogs that do-follow the commenter web site, but no-follow any link within the comment. Seems practical. Nevertheless, I think that a good commenter should be awarded a link and not a recurrent one.

    A last thing that I haven’t tested, but seems a good path to go:

    Spam is always automatic, because man-hour to handcrafted spam would be too expensive and is shortsightened, so “What about changing the name o the file that handles comments (comments.php in wordpress) to some customized name.

    All the full-of-links spam I got, never even reached my tracking systems and I assume this is because the page was never loaded, a bot probably just connected direclty to comments.php.

    I want to concept-proof this idea, but I really didn’t had the time yet :-(

    And for the last, I won’t stop commenting if you turn to no-follow, because I comment for humans (even though I dream of the day search bots will be able to follow us on this)

    [OMG, another huge comment, I hope anyone will read it :-) ]

  77. @daniel – such a plugin exists, it is called linklove. It removes no-follow of commenters after a certain number of comments, default is 10.

    As I often say, I like to see the blogosphere as a huge conversation among many people. I truly admire the way Seth Godin has set his blog so feedback comes only by trackback. I interpret this like: “do you want to follow the discussion? Don’t spend a minute on a comment, spend twenty on a post.

    That is worthy feedback, and is a very horizontal way of talking, blogger to blogger instead of blogger to visitor, but certainly doesn’t work form most blogs (it won’t work to mine, for sure).

    I like the naive view that what counts on comments, like in any conversation, is good impression you make, human to human, and I would like to believe that google should follow and not the other way around.

    I think every commenter deserves a link and I would like to open do-follow comments on my blog soon.

    Enough of philosophy! Some practical stuff.

    I am using Akismet, but it hasn’t been necessary since I started using Comment Policy plugin. Not a single spam comment appeared since then, I am very happy with it.

    The linklove plugin I commented above seems also nice.

    I heard about some blogs that do-follow the commenter web site, but no-follow any link within the comment. Seems practical. Nevertheless, I think that a good commenter should be awarded a link and not a recurrent one.

    A last thing that I haven’t tested, but seems a good path to go:

    Spam is always automatic, because man-hour to handcrafted spam would be too expensive and is shortsightened, so “What about changing the name o the file that handles comments (comments.php in wordpress) to some customized name.

    All the full-of-links spam I got, never even reached my tracking systems and I assume this is because the page was never loaded, a bot probably just connected direclty to comments.php.

    I want to concept-proof this idea, but I really didn’t had the time yet :-(

    And for the last, I won’t stop commenting if you turn to no-follow, because I comment for humans (even though I dream of the day search bots will be able to follow us on this)

    [OMG, another huge comment, I hope anyone will read it :-) ]

  78. Nathania Johnson says:

    I leave comments when I have something to say. If I go for link juice, it’s only once and it’s on blogs that I comment on more than once because I’m interested in them. On nofollow blogs, I’ll leave my site more often in the hopes of traffic, but with dofollow blogs, I don’t want too many links coming in from the same site anyway.

    Plus, I want relevant links. So it makes little sense for me to leave a comment with a link to my classic movie blog on a blog about personal finance or blogging or whatever.

  79. Nathania Johnson says:

    I leave comments when I have something to say. If I go for link juice, it’s only once and it’s on blogs that I comment on more than once because I’m interested in them. On nofollow blogs, I’ll leave my site more often in the hopes of traffic, but with dofollow blogs, I don’t want too many links coming in from the same site anyway.

    Plus, I want relevant links. So it makes little sense for me to leave a comment with a link to my classic movie blog on a blog about personal finance or blogging or whatever.

  80. I may be off the beaten track here, But one would think that managing comments is a crucial task of a blogger, its part of the job, not something to be delegated to a plug-in or what not. Its part of the job aint it? Im not advocating that you just post to steal PR but if I visit and comment on a regular basis then Im adding value and I would like something in return , know what I mean? Maybe for the bigger bloggers with active commenting, they will have to outsource the comment screening. (im available :-P 500 bux a month and I’ll screen your commenst for viagra and paxil spamming :-P)
    Cheers and beers from Canada
    Shane

  81. I may be off the beaten track here, But one would think that managing comments is a crucial task of a blogger, its part of the job, not something to be delegated to a plug-in or what not. Its part of the job aint it? Im not advocating that you just post to steal PR but if I visit and comment on a regular basis then Im adding value and I would like something in return , know what I mean? Maybe for the bigger bloggers with active commenting, they will have to outsource the comment screening. (im available :-P 500 bux a month and I’ll screen your commenst for viagra and paxil spamming :-P)
    Cheers and beers from Canada
    Shane

  82. geez guys, hate to tell you, but paid blog commenting has been around ever since the inception of blogs.

    Also – if the posts are written as they say they will, then even the blog owner won’t know they’re paid because they will be relevant.

    If that is so, then what is everyone worried about? Someone touching the sacredness (if that is a word) of the blog community?

    C’mon – as long as they aren’t poorly written comments, you all are a bunch of whiners.

  83. geez guys, hate to tell you, but paid blog commenting has been around ever since the inception of blogs.

    Also – if the posts are written as they say they will, then even the blog owner won’t know they’re paid because they will be relevant.

    If that is so, then what is everyone worried about? Someone touching the sacredness (if that is a word) of the blog community?

    C’mon – as long as they aren’t poorly written comments, you all are a bunch of whiners.

  84. Well, I’ll give you one thing right away, posting and saying you might change your comment policy to no-follow is sure a good way to get a lot of comments! We might as well get in now before the change!

    See, I wish I had your problem, to even think about it. I’ve been blogging for all of a week, and I don’t have any comments to worry about just yet. Check in with me on this one when I’ve got some traffic.

    my lonely blog can be found here.

  85. Well, I’ll give you one thing right away, posting and saying you might change your comment policy to no-follow is sure a good way to get a lot of comments! We might as well get in now before the change!

    See, I wish I had your problem, to even think about it. I’ve been blogging for all of a week, and I don’t have any comments to worry about just yet. Check in with me on this one when I’ve got some traffic.

    my lonely blog can be found here.

  86. I’ve posted about this as well and share many of the concerns already expressed here. I’ll be leaving dofollow installed and enabled for now but that is subject to change.

    I just can’t believe how many people think this is an acceptable practice. Spam is spam… I don’t care how you dress it up.

  87. I’ve posted about this as well and share many of the concerns already expressed here. I’ll be leaving dofollow installed and enabled for now but that is subject to change.

    I just can’t believe how many people think this is an acceptable practice. Spam is spam… I don’t care how you dress it up.

  88. Hello Chris, this is such a touchy subject for many. However to turn off follow is only hurting the essence of what you have taught us in the past. Blogging is an interactive relationship with the readers. In your case, your many subscribers. When a real blogger reads your feeds, post, then reads the comments of the readers, and follows they are using blogging for what it is. One of the above comment-ors “Jack” made a great point about installing the right plug-ins… Plus, if you are not interested in really reading comments before approval why even have then at all? I am a die hard reader/subscriber of your blog, and will always be. Please bend to this new trend… Where would all of you leaders be today if you were not able to benefit form comment linking form other leaders blogs?

    Power of the bloggers brother… not the spammers…

    Best/dom

  89. Hello Chris, this is such a touchy subject for many. However to turn off follow is only hurting the essence of what you have taught us in the past. Blogging is an interactive relationship with the readers. In your case, your many subscribers. When a real blogger reads your feeds, post, then reads the comments of the readers, and follows they are using blogging for what it is. One of the above comment-ors “Jack” made a great point about installing the right plug-ins… Plus, if you are not interested in really reading comments before approval why even have then at all? I am a die hard reader/subscriber of your blog, and will always be. Please bend to this new trend… Where would all of you leaders be today if you were not able to benefit form comment linking form other leaders blogs?

    Power of the bloggers brother… not the spammers…

    Best/dom

  90. Thanks all. I will update the post with my last thoughts – all your advice and perspectives have been a great help :)

  91. Thanks all. I will update the post with my last thoughts – all your advice and perspectives have been a great help :)

  92. Chris,
    You are right. I am totally in alignment with you. My blog happens in the comment box. It’s where we meet and where we learn what we think. :)

  93. Chris,
    You are right. I am totally in alignment with you. My blog happens in the comment box. It’s where we meet and where we learn what we think. :)

  94. Chris,
    You are right. I am totally in alignment with you. My blog happens in the comment box. It’s where we meet and where we learn what we think. :)

  95. Thanks Liz, somehow I thought that would be the case :)

  96. Thanks Liz, somehow I thought that would be the case :)

  97. Thanks Liz, somehow I thought that would be the case :)

  98. I strongly agree that this is an important issue and that we not let the infidels win. Our issue is not whether or not to respect readers/contributors to our blogs…but simply how to keep out the spammers. Akismet does the vast amount of that work. There are supposed to be other good tools as well. But that’s where our efforts need to go…toward better protection. And, of course, manual moderation is the final key in the process for most of us.

    I also personally feel that it’s critical to LET PEOPLE KNOW that you are using Do-Follow. I would recommend using a logo somewhere on your blog…something that clearly indicates that you respect and appreciate the contributions of your readers.

    I know Randa has a logo, and I also recently made one available on my site. Randa’s are available thru the No NoFollow community on Bumpzee (bumpzee.com/no-nofollow/), and you can find my offering here:

    http://chuckbrown.com/no-nofollow-logo.html

    Congrats on making the RIGHT decision, Chris. ;-)

  99. I strongly agree that this is an important issue and that we not let the infidels win. Our issue is not whether or not to respect readers/contributors to our blogs…but simply how to keep out the spammers. Akismet does the vast amount of that work. There are supposed to be other good tools as well. But that’s where our efforts need to go…toward better protection. And, of course, manual moderation is the final key in the process for most of us.

    I also personally feel that it’s critical to LET PEOPLE KNOW that you are using Do-Follow. I would recommend using a logo somewhere on your blog…something that clearly indicates that you respect and appreciate the contributions of your readers.

    I know Randa has a logo, and I also recently made one available on my site. Randa’s are available thru the No NoFollow community on Bumpzee (bumpzee.com/no-nofollow/), and you can find my offering here:

    http://chuckbrown.com/no-nofollow-logo.html

    Congrats on making the RIGHT decision, Chris. ;-)

  100. I strongly agree that this is an important issue and that we not let the infidels win. Our issue is not whether or not to respect readers/contributors to our blogs…but simply how to keep out the spammers. Akismet does the vast amount of that work. There are supposed to be other good tools as well. But that’s where our efforts need to go…toward better protection. And, of course, manual moderation is the final key in the process for most of us.

    I also personally feel that it’s critical to LET PEOPLE KNOW that you are using Do-Follow. I would recommend using a logo somewhere on your blog…something that clearly indicates that you respect and appreciate the contributions of your readers.

    I know Randa has a logo, and I also recently made one available on my site. Randa’s are available thru the No NoFollow community on Bumpzee (bumpzee.com/no-nofollow/), and you can find my offering here:

    http://chuckbrown.com/no-nofollow-logo.html

    Congrats on making the RIGHT decision, Chris. ;-)

  101. I’m glad you decided to keep doing do-follow. I think some bloggers do comment for the link love, but they also may have legitimate comments to place on a post or two. You can best gauge it over time, if they keep coming back or not. (i.e. yeah, like the terminator, I’ll be back! lol)

  102. I’m glad you decided to keep doing do-follow. I think some bloggers do comment for the link love, but they also may have legitimate comments to place on a post or two. You can best gauge it over time, if they keep coming back or not. (i.e. yeah, like the terminator, I’ll be back! lol)

  103. I’m glad you decided to keep doing do-follow. I think some bloggers do comment for the link love, but they also may have legitimate comments to place on a post or two. You can best gauge it over time, if they keep coming back or not. (i.e. yeah, like the terminator, I’ll be back! lol)

  104. My thoughts are I should write a plugin that will helps me sift through the comments for the past week, identify the “symptoms” of human spam, put checks in boxes to either a) delete the link, b) delete the comment c) or report as spam to Akismet and then let me click “submit”.

    I’ve been mulling over what I think are “the symptoms”, so I could display these along side the comment. (But one of my readers laughed at me and we both concluded I think too much.)

  105. My thoughts are I should write a plugin that will helps me sift through the comments for the past week, identify the “symptoms” of human spam, put checks in boxes to either a) delete the link, b) delete the comment c) or report as spam to Akismet and then let me click “submit”.

    I’ve been mulling over what I think are “the symptoms”, so I could display these along side the comment. (But one of my readers laughed at me and we both concluded I think too much.)

  106. My thoughts are I should write a plugin that will helps me sift through the comments for the past week, identify the “symptoms” of human spam, put checks in boxes to either a) delete the link, b) delete the comment c) or report as spam to Akismet and then let me click “submit”.

    I’ve been mulling over what I think are “the symptoms”, so I could display these along side the comment. (But one of my readers laughed at me and we both concluded I think too much.)

  107. Looks like those blog spam comments have started rolling in, big time!

    Fortunately, Askimet seems to be on top of it – overnight it trapped a whole *wadge* of comments on the theme of “This is exactly what I expected to find out after reading [insert post title here]. Thanks for informative article.”

    (Wonder if this comment of mine will get spam-trapped for quoting that!)

    So I googled the first part of the comment and it sure looks like someone’s been a pretty busy little spammer! On the bright side, if the fake comments are going to be that obvious, it shouldn’t be long before this guy goes out of business.

  108. Looks like those blog spam comments have started rolling in, big time!

    Fortunately, Askimet seems to be on top of it – overnight it trapped a whole *wadge* of comments on the theme of “This is exactly what I expected to find out after reading [insert post title here]. Thanks for informative article.”

    (Wonder if this comment of mine will get spam-trapped for quoting that!)

    So I googled the first part of the comment and it sure looks like someone’s been a pretty busy little spammer! On the bright side, if the fake comments are going to be that obvious, it shouldn’t be long before this guy goes out of business.