Sueblimely Australian blogger here. Please don't change channels; Blog Blond has allowed me the honor of Guest Blogging today. The topic: the pros and cons of 'nofollow'.
Let me start by explaining what 'nofollow' is. It is an attribute that can be added to websites that tells search engines not to'follow' links to external sites so that they do not gain any advantages in the ranking process.I am talking today about 'nofollow' on user added links; for example, in blog comments, forums, and wikis. Here is an example showing a link with and without 'nofollow':
Nofollow was developed by Google as a method of reducing online spam, the idea being that if search engines did not give spammers higher ratings for numerous external links, it would remove a main reason for spamming. (try telling the automated spambots that!)
Advantages of nofollow
There may be a degree of reduction in the overall amount of comment spam as it won't be such a powerful tool for search engine optimization.
Spam to sites that do not take proper measures to protect themselves against it may be reduced (e.g. blogs abandoned or left unattended for long periods and those without moderation of comments)
Large sites with a big spam problem may benefit from reduction in quantity.
Search engine results may become more useful and relevant ; it will not be so attractive for advertisers to pay for links. Reputation, service and quality will be a more powerful way of gaining higher rankings. (in an ideal world)
Disadvantages of nofollow
Did you notice that I qualified all the advantages, as it is debatable if 'nofollow' significantly reduces spam. Spammers still gain traffic and revenue from readers clicking on the links and some search engines still use the links for ranking. (Yahoo and Ask.com follow 'nofollow' links and make those sites available to their algorithm )
Spambots may not be set up to distinguish which site has adopted 'nofollow' Spamming carries on regardless.
Nofollow cannot distinguish between links you trust and would like to be 'followed' and those you don't.
If we blog on our own server we can decide whether or not to implement 'nofollow'. Most hosted blog platforms, such as Blogger and Wordpress use 'nofollow' with no inbuilt options to turn it off, taking away our choice.
Commenting is a highly recommended method of raising your search engine ranking, developing contacts and increasing your blog readership. Bloggers take the time to comment, often for this reason alone. Using 'nofollow' discourages this. As a blogger I also want to give my commenters recognition and credit for doing so. Its a two way street.
Even though commenters are a small proportion of my readership, they tend to be the ones who keep coming back. They are the ones I develop a relationship with and help build my network further. You cannot rely on search engine ranking alone to raise your readership. Having a well written blog of interest must be combined with methods of developing contacts for it to develop a good readership base.
Commenting adds fresh content to your site attracting the searchbots more often.Using 'nofollow' can therefore penalize your blog, as well as those of your commenters, in regard to search engine rank.
Feedback is extremely useful for gauging what your readers are interested in and for giving you ideas for content. This benefits all readers.
A blog by its nature is interactive, using 'nofollow' reduces the power of this feature.
Nofollow is good for the search engines but not for bloggers who are trying to increase their readership, develop their network and are already taking measures to stop spam.
Nofollow may only reduce spam so other protection methods still need to be used to eliminate the vast amount of spam generated by spambots. These other methods do allow the following of legitimate links. Why use a 'catch all' method instead of a more reliable targeted approach.
Allow comment moderation in your blog settings so that all comments have to be approved before you publish them and use spam filtering methods.
Here is a comprehensive guide to the different forms of spam filtering from Answers.com - Spam in blogs
Blogger - use inbuilt ' Show word verification for comments' setting.
Class, I'm back and with great news. I have found a substitute teacher---err, guest blogger to post about the subject I assigned her: No-Follow. She answered my ad, and am I ever lucky because she's really smart, unlike myself who is only sometimes smart when given the right dosages.
What have I been doing, you ask? More to the point, what haven't I been doing! Hey, it's summertime, and a girl's just gotta have fun, right?
Oh, okay--I know you've probably seen my mug on the sidebar of your blogs as I was checking up on you. I can't sneak up on you because of MyBlogLog and BlogCatalog anymore. I'm happy to report most of you are readable, and my ADD didn't kick in if you're keeping itReal and Juicy. Only one of you bloggers caused me to speak up and make a comment about the widgets being on top of one another.
Speaking of keeping it Real, I finally got around to watching Rosie's video blogs, and Rosie is all about keeping it Real, maybe even Raw. On her latest video she has as her guest the violet-haired Cyndi Lauper who looks into the camera with collagen pads on her face. So Beautifully Real!
Since my absence from this blog, I added myself to Facebook and Mashable. You can find your blondalicious teacher on these social networking sites if you want to contact and add me. I haven't done much with Mashable other than the basics, and I managed to accrue a few friends and upload TEN photos on Facebook. Whoot! And I finally voted for Fame Me folks. Since most of my students deserve fame (and fortune), I voted for almost everyone! I'm pleased that one of my favorite bloggers and students is in the lead. If I missed any of you, let me know, and I'll vote for you too. I want all my students to be famous!
Now I'll get to the serious s***: Second Life!
I don't know how many hours I've spent in Second Life....it's almost as addictive as blogging. Having resisted it for a long time, I got lured into it by BlogHer.
Queen Tureaud is going to be running the BlogHer Conference in Second Life, and since I don't want to fly to Chicago this summer, I am going to attend the virtual conference. The premise sounded easy 'nuf: you pimp out your avatar and fly around virtual worlds. Sounds like fun, right?
Except for the fact you can't go through walls! I want my avatar to be a ghost avatar with the ability to walk through those walls and windows. I had a helluva time getting out of some places for the teleport button wasn't working. And then I forgot to put my top back on after swimming in a gorgeous swimming pool, and I wondered why everyone was looking at my rather strangely. Oh, I should mention--I made my boobs quite large. Maybe that's why they were looking at me, ya think?
I'm not going to reveal my avatar's name on Second Life until I get it more together there. Right now my gal is lazing away on a hammock at the Mystic Academy. Now don't go sneaking up and jumping on her. She's having this great dream about.....nevermind! Come to think of it, my hammock is calling me too. And do you have a hammock, Mr. "Humor-Blogs. com"?
Class: I know you must be wondering what the h** happened to our teacher for she's M.I.A. And here's my alibi: I've been taking a break. Ya see, I believe in this information overload age that there's a need to renew yourself or you grow stale....your posts grow boring...and you're just regurgitating information you've read elsewhere.
Do I hear grumbling in the back of the classroom? You want to see more of your blondalicious teacher with her great blog information-- I know...I know! But let me teach you about The Lawof Diminishing Returns and how this applies to blogging, and then perhaps you'll understand. The Law of Diminishing Returns says that you write one blog, and it's fun; you write two blogs, and it's still kinda fun; but if you blog every day on many blogs as I'm prone to do, you'll get a huge blog burnout/hangover which is way worse than a tequila hangover, trust me!
Since I want to bring you fresh, fun, and lively copy, I take a break from time to time. If you're not worried about your stats, your readership, and your ad revenue (which I'm not-- as you notice I'm ad free!), you would be well advised to do the same.
Before I give you your weekly homework, I want to give a big shout out to Deborah of Fast LaneTransport who kindly left a link in the comments about where to get the meta-tags I needed! Deborah's blog isn't anywhere close to boring for she features, "art, the odd, the unusual, offbeat news, weird sciences, a little business, and yes, even trucking!" which is the kind of weird s*** that I love to read!
And one more shout out to Blog Bloke who has recovered from his health crisis and is back to blogging! Read his posts about becoming a Remarkable Blogger! You know what makes him a remarkable blogger? Check out the card his daughter gave him for Father's Day. His blog has depth and heart...it's not ALL about business! You can feel a REAL person writes the posts!
Ok...down to business....here's the latest blog links which may be of some benefit to you:
Remember when I asked if anyone wanted to guest blog, and no one stepped up? Hah! My prayers have been answered, and on this site, you can request guest bloggers, and you can apply as a guest blogger. Thank you Blog Goddesses!
Notice the new Fame Me! widget on my left sidebar? Click that and fame me. You can also add your blogs to get famed! There are monetary prizes for the winner! Hint! I've already been famed 11 times, and I just posted it this week. Now if some bright blogger will come up with a contest for Infamous Bloggers--now that would be interesting!
Here is another way to make money from your blog, for whenever a mashed story or video is shown on your site, you get paid.
And finally, if you look in my "Reads" section, I've added links for new bloggers I recently discovered. Check them out. I'm drawn to the foxy writing style of Cash Quests who calls it as she sees it just like your Blondalicious Teacher!
Have you experienced Blog Burn-out? If so, let me know how you handled it.
Class, what I don't know could fill the bra of Pamela Anderson, and you know how big that is! However, I'm always learning, studying, and attempting to become a better blogger--just like you, right? There's not a day that goes by that I'm not either scratching my head in bafflement or tearing out my hair in frustration as I work at improving my blog(s)! When does the learning curve get any easier?
Yesterday I discovered a site titled Website Grader which is a really cool site because it grades your blog using SEO guidelines. I was shocked to see the score of Blog-Blond because as I have written from the very beginning of the blog--"I'm just a quark smarter than you." Then again, maybe not! Lately you've been showing how brilliant you are with your scores, and I suppose you're going to write in my comments how much better your score is than mine. I know you can't help yourselves because you want to show-off for your blondalicious teacher!
The Website Grader writes,"Ovewr 35,000 Websites Graded!", and thus out of all these websites, Blog-Blond didn't do so bad for she scored 64/100! What does this mean?
"A website grade of 64 for www.blog-blond.blogspot.com means that of the thousands of websites that have previously been submitted to the tool, our algorithm has calculated that this site scores higher than 64% of them in terms of its marketing effectiveness. This algorithm uses a proprietary blend of over a dozen different variables, including search engine data, website structure, approximate traffic, site performance, and others."
I scored ZERO on meta-data. Heck, I don't even know what meta-data is! They suggested adding them to the page. (note to myself--find out!) Grrrrr....
They said there was ZERO page description--didn't they read the banner? Grrrrr....
They said "Font Tags Found in HTML" and cautioned against this. Grrrr....
I need to add "alt" attributes to my images. Grrr....
The ONLY score I'm thrilled about is this one: the READABILITY level is 4th Grade! This is a good thing, ya know, because "the content should be made to be simple so that a majority of the target audience can understand it." I work very hard to make the Blond simple, easy, and readable. And they say I've succeeded!
Check out your score and let me know how you did! And if any one of you brilliant (yet still very naughty!) students want to step up and REVEAL your genius in a guest post, the offer is still on the table. My Uncle Vinnie won't knock on your door if you're not ALL THAT funny--I promise!
Class: I received an email today from Kilroy reminding me of his TWO Blog Carnivals, a Relationship Carnival and a Meme Carnival. Since I've never participated in a carnival before, I said to myself, "F'it! I'm gonna do it!"
Of course, after reading the rules, I'm going to have to behave myself. I won't be able to write, "F'it" most likely because the rules state no profanity or sexual pictures. I don't really use profanity as I always make sure my 'funky' words are abbreviated or adorned. Carnivals are a great way to bring attention to your blog and attract new readers so I've read.
Your Homework Assignment: Write a ROCKING post and join the Carnival along with your Blondalicious Teacher. Here's the link to get the details.
Are ya going to join-in the fun, Mr. "Humor-Blogs.com"? I'm sure you would have a lot to say about relationships!
On another note, Peopleized is up and running. I've only done one interview thus far, but if you care to interview me, I'm available for some sizzling questions!
"bollocks n. How do I put this delicately... bollocks are testicles. The word is in pretty common use in the UK (not in my house, of course!) and works well as a general "surprise" expletive in a similar way to bugger. The phrase "the dog's bollocks" is used to describe something particularly good (yes, good) - something like "see that car - it's the dog's bollocks, so it is". This in turn gives way to homonym phrases like "the pooch's privates" or "the mutt's nuts" which all generally mean the same thing. Oh, and this beer from Wychwood Brewery. The word has also slipped through the the State of Florida's censors in the wonderful form of this registration plate. We also describe a big telling-off as a bollocking, and additionally use the word to mean "rubbish" (as in "well, that's a load of bollocks"). Some additional US/UK confusion is added by the fact that the words "bollix" and "bollixed" are sometimes used in the US to describe something thrown into confusion or destroyed."
Are there trigger words in 'blogs' which do it for you and make you smile?
I don't know how I arrived at the Blue Witch blog, but I'm glad I did because the latest post led me to this site: The Gender Genie
Of course, this site intrigued me, and thus, I began researching the theory by copying and pasting the last posts from my TEN blogs to check and see if I am a girl or boy blogger. If indeed the gender theory postulated using the algorithm developed by Moshe Koppel and Shlomo Argamon is correct in regards to my gender, then I'll know for sure at long last. There's also something about the word Shlomo that makes me smile. Hmmmm.....
After going through this long process, the results from my post reveal that SIX out of my TEN blogs are written by a MALE! This must mean I'm a blog bi-sexual, right? Well, I admit I was a tomboy as a little girl, but now I look, feel, and act very girly. At least, the blondalicious Blog-Blond blog showed up as a female!
On another note, since so many of my students are smartier (I made this word up just because I can!) and nerdier than me as noted by you in your comments on my last post (except for Carlos but that's just because he's a Spanish gentlemen!), the teacher now offers any one of my BRIGHT nerdy students to do a guest post. So please step up and offer your blog wisdom to the rest of us blogging dummies...err, that would be mostly me!
If you would like to guest post, notify me either through a comment or email, and we'll work it out. The rules are:
Funny, cuss words modified, good information or links (but not of those I detest!), something to say about blogs, bloggers, and blogging. Business bloggers not welcome because you're too boring!
Class, I hope you're rested from your weekend! I'm not! I was consoling Paris and holding her hand all weekend long before she went....well, you know where! Yuk! The horror of having to wear prison colors is also too much to bear.
Someone sent me this silly nerd test, and I'm so depressed I actually took it! Truth be told, I guessed at most of the multiple choice answers. It must be my lucky day to have this high of a score. Let me know how you score, ok?
I appreciate your poll answers, and I'm surprised and impressed how many of you so successfully blog at work!
Students! Students! Gather 'round! Aren't you excited I returned on a Friday? Right when you're already kicking back with a beer thinking to yourselves that the Bad A$$ Blond(B.A.D.)must have taken another vacation because she hasn't posted any weekend homework assignments, I show up on your computer screen. Never doubt my love for you, my beloved students. I haven't forgotten about you.
I admit it! I've been a very naughty teacher because I feel I've been blogged alive which isn't nearly as bad as being buried alive, but close!
What's this, you say?
Hey, it happens to the BEST of us bloggers--even your bodacious bloggin' blondalicious(B.B.B.)teacher! With 12 blogs to juggle, there have been days lately when I just want to dip into the jacuzzi and daydream about scandalicious, superficial (S.S.) things like whether La Lohan is going to hang in there with her rehab or whether Britney is going to ditch her crazy hat collection--or other things equally moronic.
In my recent period of recuperation from OVER-BLOGGING, I have come up with some hard and fast rules which I wish to teach you.
First, ignore the majority of your emails, except the one offering you a free trip to Cannes. If you don't ignore the emails, you will get sucked right into the computer, and before you know it, you will be a blob. If you try to write in this blobbed-out state, your blog(s) will suffer. Much of these emails are non-essential information which don't support your hyper creative kung fu blog stance.
Second,do as your teacher did: Rejuvenate. Read. Jacuzzi. Do the F.U.N. thing. Laugh. Eat, drink, and make merry. There's more than enough information to suggest blogs might not weather the years ahead as we limp into 2012. So don't worry, be HAPPY! A link is a link is a link. Your blog popularity goes up, and it goes down. Small stuff!
Third, don't buy into the fantasy of visualization! The REAL Secret is that blogging is a lot of work, and your blog won't be competing with any of the Big Boyz unless you sell your soul and work 24/7! Ok, that last sentence was a tad harsh. I take back the part about selling your soul. HOWEVER, I will say this: visualizing must be meshed with emotion with ACTION!
And yet action needs to come from a balanced being!
This is your homework assignment this weekend: take a break from blogging and see if you're still human. Take back your life.