A couple months ago I installed a plugin on the blog that meant search engines would index links in comments: by default WordPress uses ‘nofollow‘ on comments to stop spammers abusing them to boost search engine rankings, but that prevents genuine commenters getting credit for their contributions.
One problem: as one commenter pointed out, the blog as a whole was set to ‘noindex-nofollow’ “which equals a no trespasing sign for search engines for ALL of the site’s links. It’s Google suicide.”
I added that problem to my vast to-do list, and moved on.
But that moved to the top of my to-do list recently when the BBC made a similar mistake with their linking mechanisms.
So I scoured this blog’s code to delete the meta tag nofollow reference – to no avail.
I called for help from Twitter followers, and got two very useful suggestions: Andy Dickinson found a plugin to alter the meta tags; and Gavin Wray pointed out the much simpler option: in the blog admin go to Settings > Privacy > and select make visible to search engines.
So there’s hope yet, but I don’t like the accessibility issue at all, so should I switch back to standard comments?
Well I just wouldn't use Intense Debate, but you might just like it… One other thing, if you look at the code of this page and look down at the feed links on the right side you'll see that each link has a "title" attribute with often HUNDREDS of words in it – it's just bizarre, I'd do something about that…
Perhaps why wordpress grouphosted (wp.com) hasn't implemented yet after automattic bought iID. WordPress .com doesn't allow any java, so they must have been sure a non java was on the way or have insisted on non java version. WP very proud of the google visibility of their blogs. Also, it is just so damn useful to have comment keywords come up in google.
This is the main reason why I don't use external commenting systems such as Intense Debate. Although I can see a lot of advantages for using such a system it doesn't weigh up to the fact that these systems are separating my blog content (post versus comments) while they in fact belong together and should be indexed as such.
I use the linklove plugin: Where a commenter has commented at least 10 times (configurable) the nofollow reference is removed. For all newer commenters, the nofollow remains.
Thanks Jon – I will try that. It also annoys me that I have to log in every day to rate and make comments!
thanks – this is starting to help the fog clear…
I wouldn’tt get to hung up on it, people will still get involved if your content is good, even if the link carries no weight
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