rel="nofollow" doesn't stop spam, it removes the incentive

I just saw (just before unsubscribing) Robert’s entry about the google nofollow attribute and how everybody, according to him, is wrong in thinking it will stop spam.

Go and read the link, and come back here. Done?

Well, the thing is, why do spammers use comments and referrers on blogs like yours? I don’t think it has anything to do with the spammer targeting your audience as being more interested in Viagra than the general public.

It has to do with your high google juice. It has to do with the target web site going up in the google index. That’s the only reason they target blogs. They leverage google juice. They don’t care about your readers, and I really don’t think their intention is for your readers to follow the link.

Removing the only reason why they target comment spam is a step in the right direction, and one that will be much more efficient than any blacklisting in the future. If antispam technology was built-in any mail client out there, I’m not sure we would see the same amount of spam being sent.

Only point where I’d agree with Robert is that it doesn’t replace a CAPTCHA tool (available on my blog thanks to dasBlog 1.7).