DoFollow allows bloggers to reward their commenters by providing them with a backlink that is recognized by search engines to their site. Combining this with KeyWordLuv allows a commenter to get a targeted keyword backlink which provides SEO value.
Bloggers put on these two plugins to encourage commenting and reward their loyal readers and followers, but they are heavily abused by marketers and spam bots which are trying to find and scavenge a quick backlink. They are also abused by individuals hired to scavenge backlinks for companies or people who just do it for themselves.
This is where DoFollow restriction plugins come into play.
One such plugin is the NoFollow Free This plug-in allows you to provide DoFollow links to your loyal blog commenters but prevents you from providing that same benefit to spammers and everyone who comments (like the DoFollow WordPress plugin does).
The NOFF WordPress plugin is simple, you just download it and install it. Be default if you do nothing it will set so that a commenter has to leave 10 comments before their username link becomes DoFollow (you can adjust this with the options to make it less). I have set mine to allow 5 comments before your link becomes DoFollow.
You can also specify specific keywords that are always NoFollow if someone puts them in their "KeywordLuv" link or username field. This is a good way to cut down on KeywordLuv abuse.
And last but not least, you can specifically type in email addresses that always get "NoFollow" to their links if you want to keep comments around but prevent the person from taking advantage of the DoFollow benefit you are trying to provide.
The plugin also allows you to give a little total # of comments displayed next to the authors name if you want to display the total number of comments someone has submitted to your site.
Now that I was pointed to the WordPress NoFollow Free plugin, I am hoping it will help cut down on the comment spam and KeywordLuv and DoFollow abuse.
Thanks to Dennis Edell from Direct Sales Marketing who is credited with pointing me to the WordPress plugin called NOFF (NoFollow Free WordPress Plugin).
Alternatively, Udegbunam Chukwudi from Blog Setup Service mentioned the limitation of NoFF is that it will NoFollow the same user who uses different keywords on comments forcing them to leave X number of comments as each keyword they want to leverage. This is where the LinkLove WordPress Plugin written by Jennifer Ray comes in.
The LinkLove plugin will allow you to simply set the # of comments a commenter has to submit before they become DoFollow and you can also blacklist specific emails:
This plugin doesn’t allow separate stats for "authors" and doesn’t give the option to show # of comments next to a commenters name but is simple, easy to use and makes it more convenient for commenters who want to leave comments with a variety of keywords back to their sites.
This plugin also doesn’t let you specify some deliberate keywords to always "Nofollow" which was a good feature of NoFF.
Either plugin works well to help curb DoFollow and KeyWordLuv spam and would be a good choice for your blog. I personally am sticking with NoFollow Free because I want to be able to rule out specific keywords from ever becoming DoFollow links and I like the summary of total comments next to the commenter name.