Friday, July 11, 2008

Check Out My Flair

If you poke around here at all, you may have noticed a new widget on the right.

Down low...

Check it out...

What is that, you say? Well, I'm glad you asked.

Back when blogging was brand new, spammers made a practice of hijacking the comments section to lead people to their questionable content. In response to said hijacking, blog hosting sites responded by including some code in the blog template (called the "no-follow attribute") that prevented internet spiders from linking back to these spammers and sending people their way.

From what I understand, the "no-follow" rule not only affected spammers, it also affected legitimate commenters who would have benefitted from a little "Google Juice" as it were, meaning their comments would have perhaps driven random Googlers to their blog, thus encouraging readership and/or driving up their ad dollars, and so on and so forth.

In response to the "no-follow" code, bloggers have risen up and have begun participating in a {not so new} movement called "do-follow." Basically, to participate, you hack into your HTML code and remove the "no-follow" portion, then you post a participatory widget somewhere to let people know. Then when people comment, somehow the Google bugs will follow them, and perhaps Technorati, as well as others. In addition to the internet spiders, I'm pretty likely to follow myself, so lurkers beware.

Bottom line: Link love encourages comments, and I'm all about the feedback.


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