Digg Nofollow Links: Matt Cutts Approved

    September 3, 2009
    Chris Crum

Yesterday, Digg announced that it was changing the way it handles some links with regards to the nofollow attribute. The point of the changes is to cut down on Digg spam. Digg is now adding rel="nofollow" to any external link that they aren’t sure they can "vouch for." This means:

    – External links from comments
    – External links from user profiles
    – External links from story pages "below a certain threshold of popularity"

Google’s Matt Cutts posted his feelings on the matter to his blog. "I think this is pretty smart," says Cutts. "Digg isn’t adding nofollow to everything, just the links that they’re less sure about. Once a story looks real to them, I can imagine that they would lift the nofollow."

Cutts also shared a couple of videos he has done where he discusses how Google takes a similar approach, and answers two questions about Nofollow:

You may recall the topic of the first video from an article WebProNews ran about it this week. Cutts specifically talks about Google Knol, and how at first authors receive nofollowed links, but as the authors gain more turst, they sometimes remove the nofollows.

"So [the] new move by Digg is a positive change in my opinion, because Digg decreases the benefit for spammy stories but Digg still helps normal and high-quality stories in the search engines," says Cutts.

Digg said the decision was made after consultation with "leading experts" in the SEO/SEM and link spam fields. The company says it is looking out for content providers and the Digg community.