I don’t know about you, but I’ve been noticing more and more bloggers lately aren’t linking to the actual source of information they’re discussing.
I was reading a post over at Matt Cutts’ blog regarding the new paid link service John Scott is offering (more on that later), and it struck me as odd that Matt didn’t link to what the hell he was talking about. He talks about John’s new paid link service. Quotes part of the details. But he doesn’t link to it for his readers to follow. At best he provides a two step (links to another blog that links to John’s page).
Since Matt represents and is big with Google, I figure he must be onto something. We all know that Matt is the epitome of good Google behavior, so I’m going to style this blog post after his blogging style.
I mentioned this over on Threadwatch recently. What’s with the ‘missing links’ when talking about something? I think in that particular Threadwatch case it was more an ‘oops’ than intentional–but there does seem to be lots of links being skipped around the blogosphere, and plenty of two-stepping.
And to me it’s odd. Because that leaves your readers with two-clicks-away from the actual information being discussed. If you read Reddit’s FAQ, you’ll find this little blurb:
Likewise, linkjacking an article from its original source in order to drive traffic to your personal blog will likely just drive down your karma.
Reddit calls it linkjacking, and I think that’s a good description. Linkjacking isn’t cool, doesn’t best serve the readers, yet it’s growing at an alarming rate IMO. Would Reddit users spank Matt Cutts for linkjacking (point a link to search engine journal rather than John’s page that he discusses)? I shudder at the audacity–but probably they would. Or so says the FAQ.
Another thing you’ll find over on Matt’s blog is his love affair with nofollow.
Graywolf has a good post today about the history of the ‘nofollow’ (a Google proposition), and it does cause one to pause. The nofollow was fed to the masses as a way to discourage blog spam and ensure that your blog wouldn’t be feeding good juice to a junk or spam site by a user generated link (comment spammers). So why is it now being insisted on for things like paid links? A link that the webmaster/blogger herself decided to provide?
I’m in a dilemma over this. I have a page full of article marketing resources–but I nofollow the links. Why? Because article sites aren’t picky about what the articles link to. Not-picky-at-all. But they’re still actually good resources for article marketers, so I made the page. Yet I don’t want to juice them up.
Is that wrong for me to do? I think yes actually. Because that page is for you to use. I didn’t make it for Google. Personal Dilemma. I also have blogged a time or two about what I’m thinking may be ‘iffy’ websites without a clickable link (at least posted the domain though so you could find it). Wrong? Yeah probably. Because again–now I’m posting to better serve the search engines rather than just being concerned with you, the reader.
I have some thinking to do. Am I blogging for Google, or am I blogging for SuperAff readers?
I’ve been following the talk about Wikipedia doing the nofollow thing as well. Pretty much everyone knows the external links on Wikipedia weren’t juiced anyhow. Maybe they factor in after a certain amount of time passes, or if other quality factors are met–I don’t know. But the nofollow on Wikipedia links isn’t going to slow down or stop Wikipedia spam. The traffic the links provide are worthwhile in itself–as well as the hat tip of authority a Wikipedia link can offer too (for human readers).
Basically–Wikipedia caved for no good reason IMO since nothing will change.
Maybe though, since Google values Wikipedia so highly, we should all follow Wikipedia’s example and nofollow every outbound link? If a prize like Wikipedia does it, shouldn’t we all?
domain names removed to protect the guilty
If you’re confused about wth I’m talking about here–don’t blame me. I’m thinking blame Matt Cutts. Or Google. Or both.
Nofollow and nolinks.