The first thought that came to my mind after reading the headline alone was, 'ah, another nail in the bloggers' coffin'. When I read the news fully and the comments that it attracted, I noticed that I was not alone.
The news is Google is warning bloggers who are accepting free stuff in place of a link given to the person or the company from whom the freebie was received.
Bloggers are handpicked by advertisers to write a blog post about their clients with a link back to the client's website or at least place a text or banner, linking to the advertises' client's website or blog. The condition laid to the bloggers is the link should be 'Do follow'.
Fair enough; why else should they reward the bloggers either with free sample or cash?
However, our boss warns bloggers to make that link a 'No follow'.
Well, one more tooth was pulled out.
What bloggers can do but only to shout their dissent against Google. After all, the "Boss is always right"-right?
Here is an interesting question asked by Uncle waldo in the comments of the above blog post by Search Engine Watch.
"I run a music podcast. I have musicians and bands all over the world sending me music (which, in turn, I put the playlists on the associated blog post for each show and links back to the band's website or iTunes page... no, I'm not getting paid for it). Does that mean I've got to disclose all of these because I received the songs for free?"
Ha, ha, nice question. I wonder whether Google will reply directly to him.
News source: https://searchenginewatch.com/2016/03/11/google-issues-guidelines-on-bloggers-and-links-for-freebies/
Note to Google:
Oh dear Google, all the links in this blog post carry 'no follow' attribute.