Twitter Nofollow

News of Twitter adopting rel=”nofollow” is disturbing.

Sure links from Twitter can be abused, because Twitter profiles are so heavily interlinked.

What they should have done is stuck nofollow on your “twitter blogroll” links thus making each Twitter account a little more independent and negating the benefit of building up mass friendships for more than traffic generation.

It isn’t a minor thing, Twitter has just become another “Wikipedia”, a black hole sucking in link juice and only allowing it to flow internally.

I would no longer class Twitter as a microblogging application, because in many ways the content you submit is being used for search engine manipulation.
This isn’t the same as the Technorati or use of nofollow, because both of those services also use internal nofollow.

Looks like Twitter has just become a prime contender to be added to Lucia’s No Spam Old Links plugin (provides an interface to add nofollow to old links in your content)

So now you can’t get any link love at all when thought leaders like Robert Scoble link to you from their Twitter account, or their Google Reader link blog (which gets fed to Twitter)
That does still drive a certain amount of traffic, but the links no longer carry any kind of “vote” of editorial approval.

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  1. says

    What is Twitter thinking?!

    I’m beginning to think my no-spam links plugin — started mostly because I wanted to teach myself to write plugins and inspired be the desire to comment on JohnChow while not giving him link juice, is going to take on a life of its own. There is definitely a need to “nofollow” sites that practice universal “nofollow” on all outbound links!

  2. says

    Am I the only one who thinks this nofollow crap being done by sites like Wikipedia and Twitter is starting to get out of hand?

    The only thing I nofollow on my site are printable versions of my blogging posts and the quote links for quoting comments. I’d nofollow snotty sites that like to nofollow up the wazoo, but you know what, I just won’t link to them, period. Look it up on Google if you want to know what I’m talking about. :-P

    • says

      Lincon, I agree. This is just getting stupid. nofollow is being used like some sort of magic bullit cure all but in truth it is more like using a cannon to kill a fly. I’m getting that same sort of feeling a general might have got when his utterly useless soldiers pulled out thier sowrds and spent a lot of time making swooshing noices and waving them arround while a well disiplined and skilled army of invaders marched slowly towards them. It’s like that only worse.

  3. says

    I totally disagree with nofollow tags. You see, not everybody spamming blog via comments. Most of them comment because they care about the topic.

  4. says

    Once everyone nofollow’s what are Google going to be left with for their PageRank algorithm to work on? It’s getting out of hand.

  5. says

    I use nofollow extensively, but ultimately the links from my content on permalink pages are followed, and so are links from contributors in my comments.

    The interconnectivity of Twitter profiles is the problem, not the outgoing links

  6. says

    I totally disagree with nofollow tags. You see, not everybody spamming blog via comments. Most of them comment because they care about the topic.

    A lot of people that knew anything about marketing did, i was oine of them damn.

    I only use nofollow on internal duplicate content.

  7. says

    The interconnectivity of Twitter profiles is the problem, not the outgoing links

    Strangely, the numerous internal links on my Twitter profile appear to be follow. Only the outgoing links are nofollow. When I auto-update from my blog posts, the outgoing links are also tinyurl’s– which I sort of assumed interfered with passing link juice. Is there even a point to making them no follow? (Isn’t this sort of like two condoms?)

  8. says

    I’ve only started to learn about this no follow deal.

    I’ve heard about text links ads getting in trouble before. Now Twitter. Interesting to see how this turns out.

    Thanks for the post!

  9. says

    Well that just sucks now doesn’t it?
    My whole reason for using Twitter was to get some linkage to my own sites.

    *Blowing off dust and cobwebs from the “I don’t need you anymore vault” and throwing Twitter into the void of uselessness, move over “MyBlogLog”*

  10. says

    If every site(or most) removed nofollows then we would be back to square one and spam would be out of control. It is great though when some bloggers remove it. Most people flock to those sites that do that, just consider it as being in “the know”.

  11. says

    NoFollow is handy within your own site to block just or “noise” pages that hold very little value, for instance i use rel-nofollow on my forums calendar.php as there’s thousands of duplicate pages.

    However when you pull a Wikipedia and start basically saying, thanks for writing this article and providing content for our site now we are big and don’t value your link or the extra subject matter you have.


  12. says

    I use twitter religiously, but not so much for marketing – I wasn’t aware that it had much benefit to spammers as I receive most of my tweets via SMS, etc… Is it really so bad that they need to implement this at this point? or is this some kind of preemptive strike against something that hasn’t happened yet?

  13. says

    I’m not really sure what the big deal is with the SEO industry and nofollow. So what if a link is nofollow? Don’t you all post in places because you want to “teach” others? Or do you simply post for your own self-interests? NOfollow was implemented by Google because a link leading from one site to another site should “only” count when the “owner” of the linking site is vouching/voting for “your” site because it has great content on the page or the site and the link is a good resource for the linking site’s visitors. That’s it. Period. Nothing more.

    Why does this extremely simple concept lost in our industry? I have NO idea. In my mind, ALL these social media sites should use the nofollow tag. By not doing so, the owners are risking “big-time” the possibility of linking to a bad neighborhood.

    So my question is; why does our industry always think about this link juice stuff when there is soooo many other high priority things they should be doing?

    I’m not getting the nofollow cry-babies, sorry.

    • says


      People have been touting for months that Twitter is an alternative to blogging.

      If I voted for your site in Twitter rather than writing a full blog post, you wouldn’t gain any juice though maybe a little traffic.

      Twitter is still allowing indexing of the content, without counting external links. Links are part of the content yet it is being modified without specific consent, and I don’t even think that was announced, it was just discovered.

      On the flip side, I have also written that Twitter might be a legal liability for any kind of business use, so it just becomes an IM.

  14. says

    For me one of the major benefits of Twitter has been to extend my network and interact even more closely with readers of my blog and others. I’ve been able to sore the front pages of Dutch social news sites on occasion, just by people voting for articles I had linked to in a tweet in Twitter. So for me there is also a significant traffic benefit, like you also concluded at the end of your article. Too bad that we lose the “vote of editorial approval” as you call is.

  15. says

    I think we’ll eventually get to the point where everyone uses nofollow and no one gives any juice to any one; an internet full of hermits. Nofollow is the antithesis of web 2.0.

  16. says

    It’s a shame, there are a lot of methods to disable spam from comments, and links beside “No Follow”, I really like technorati, now I’m going to test “Twitter”, but I think I will not use it very often…

    Condom Man, that’s it, nofollow =! web 2.0.

    Sorry for my english
    best regards

  17. says

    It’s really a pity. I liked Twitter a lot and I stopped to use it after the nofollow stablishment. And I did the same with Wikipedia.

    If we think in the reasons of nofollow, it makes me nerve even more, due to the fact that only Google can gain and not anyone.

    The same with blogs. I own some to generate content and traffic and I wanted to dofollow it because I believe that this is a reward to the person that read my post and stopped by to say something.

    Of course I manage all my comments and this is the point that determine internet quality: personal control.

    Why nofollow every links if its so easy to flag a spam post, comment, hub, squidoo or others? I think that after you’ve written this excelent post we could see the results of Twitter’s option: much less traffic, posts and comments.

    Spammers will always exist, with nofollow or dofollow.

  18. proteinpowderreviews says

    That's lame, I think all links from my profile should be follow if I want em to be, it's my profile!