inverse google bombing

I was thinking last night that the nofollow tag creates the ability for inverse google bombing. This would be where everyone links to a specific site, but they include the rel=nofollow in any link to that site. You'd have a situation where thousands of people were linking to something like mad, but it never shows up in Google or any of the major search engines. Hate Microsoft? Want to link to them, yet not give them a pagerank boost? rel=nofollow.
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But that's not going to lower their score that they established through other means, right? Such links would just be ignored, and not count negatively towards someone because Google thinks they're performing command spam.

In blogging terms, if a lot of people dig a blogger, they'll link to him from their own entries or in a blogroll. That's how someone gets credible Google Juice.

When you think about it, should a blogger get more juice for their blog because he spends more time commenting on other blogs? If he creates quality original content that merrits more juice, then he can post it on his own blog and others can link via their own blog entries.
True, Joost, an inverse google bomb would only affect new sites. (but there are quite a few of them these days.)

There are still many, many more commenters and discussion forum participants than there are bloggers. I guess I fell like what these people are interested in linking to should help shape our maps of the web...not just people with their own weblog. But this is the trade-off that content-controllers have decided to make for the health of participatory sites.

One solution could be to modify blogging tools to mark links as nofollow by default when posted, and offer an interface similar to comment approval where one could mark comments as 'trusted' after the fact, removing the tag again.

Or if you have moderation turned on in the first place, don't mark links as nofollow by default when you do approve comments.

This assumes that Google doesn't index a posting before comments could be marked as trusted of course (or comes back for another index a short while later).
Great observation, pb. In my mind, the unanticipated use of rel="nofollow" is getting at a larger issue (which may be related to why the "semantic web" has yet to catch on) - the difficulty of determining the context of a page (or regions within a page.) "No follow" makes great sense in context of blogs and commenting, but may make less sense in other contexts elsewhere on the web.

I wonder if after supporting this new attribute value, Google will end up with a new set of problems - similar to the current spammer driven ones in that they will originate from Google's single net-wide interpretation of a given markup convention when calculating pagerank.
"True, Joost, an inverse google bomb would only affect new sites"

Not really since it's all relative. Over time, this would depress properties being nofollow-ed.

I think the comment spam problem could have been addressed in other ways. I put links in my comments to other people's sites that I think actually make goos sense to include in PageRank calculations.
"mark links as nofollow by default when posted, and offer an interface similar to comment approval where one could mark comments as 'trusted' after the fact"

This is probably the best idea I have heard so far when it comes to ways to live with nofollow and still get some of the old-style functionality at the same time. I still don't 100% like it, though, because really, anybody who participates in the discussion diserves the link credit. It's just the spammers that need punishing -- not the lesser-known, legitimate commenters
Hi! You're reading a single post on a weblog by Paul Bausch where I share recommended links, my photos, and occasional thoughts.

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