We knew that when Google launched the Disavow Links tool, people were going to use it more than they should, even though Google made it clear that most people shouldn't use it at all.
A person doing some SEO work posted a question in the Google Webmaster Central product forum (via Search Engine Roundtable) that many others have probably wondered: Should I use the disavow tool for irrelevant links?
In other words, should you tell Google to ignore links from sites that aren't related to yours? The answer is no.
Google's own John Mueller jumped in to say this: "Just to be completely clear on this: you do not need to disavow links that are from sites on other topics. This tool is really only meant for situations where there are problematic, unnatural, PageRank-passing links that you can't have removed."
Google updates and manual action penalties have caused a lot of webmasters to re-evaluate their link profiles. Many have scrambled to get various links to their sties taken down, often going overboard (or even way overboard).
For the record, Google still views backlinks as "a really, really big win in terms of quality for search results.”
In other "how Google views links" news, Matt Cutts just put out an 8-minute video about how Google determines whether your links are paid or not.
Image via Google.com