Site owners are obsessed over rel="nofollow" HTML attribute!
First thing first, what is rel="nofollow" ?
It is HTML attribute that is added into hyperlink like this:
<a href="YOUR SITE'S URL" rel="nofollow">
What does it do?
It tells search engines (like Google and Yahoo) NOT to increase your site's ranking in search results.
How will it affect you?
Using Google as example, we know the more backlinks1 your site gets the higher Google will put you in its search results, in other words you will appear on the first page of Google's results and not on 25th page.
Also, it affects the Page Rank of you site that you probably check like every 5 minutes, and Page Rank in terms affects your site's rank in Google results.
Why are other websites using rel="nofollow" ?
According to Google, Google will penalize you for linking to the low quality websites. Lets look at some rough examples, if you were linking to the websites that are skimming, phishing or have illegal content, Google will derank your site, or worse your site might even get blacklisted2.
NOW, why did I name this thread "WWW Obsessed over rel="nofollow" HTML attribute!" ?
If you did some observations you would see that most sites and when I say most I mean about %80 of the websites are using NOFOLLOW attribute. I mean come on, what about those days where you could just go and leave a comment on some site and count it as a backlink to your site?! Most of the comments that are enabled on the sites assign NOFOLLOW attribute automatically to the links that are left in comment section. What about those wannabe DMOZ3 open directories out there that you waisted your time submitting your site to? Did you know that most of those FAKE open directories also assign NOFOLLOW attribute in their outgoing links. Some of those open directories want you to link back to them without NOFOLLOW attribute, I mean really, I think they want to much!
How about link exchanging, which uCozers forum even does? So, you decided to do link exchange, you link to some site and he links back to you, but wait your not that bright or maybe you just too trusting, so you don't bother to check the source of his page to see if he didn't add NOFOLLOW attribute to the link that points to you. I mean, why bother to check, you went to his site saw that he added a link to your site and that was good enough for you. Who cares about Page Rank I got two visitor from him last night, Right?
How about forums? So you little spammer went to forums and start creating threads which have links that point to your site, Hooray you say I got a backlink, think again, almost all forums have NOFOLLOW attribute assigned to the out going links, and guess what one of those forums is uCozers, in a matter a fact all of forums that are created in uCoz.
What about Wikipedia? Even Wikipedia have NOFOLLOW attribute in their outgoing links. It is cool that they adding it, but what about their References section? Hey, we trust you enough to take information from you, but we don't trust you enough to give you a link back without NOFOLLOW. If you think about it, they have their reasons, if they didn't include it people would spam the crap out of them, COUGH iWOuLd COUGH. Sorry my bad.
Ow boy that is enough for today, I hope this make sense to you, I got to get some sleep. Will fix this post tomorrow.
1 "backlinks" are the links on the other website that point to your site
2 "blacklisted" meaning it will not appear in Google search on any page, if that ever happens you might as well abandon your old domain name and get a new one, since it is almost impossible to get of the blacklist.
3 DMOZ doesn't add NOFOLLOW attribute to their out going links.