Google will be treating nofollow links differently

Google announced that it will not be treating the rel="nofollow" attribute as a signal any more, but as a hint. The background is that so many CMS’es are designating every link as nofollow.

They’re introducing two new hints: ugc for user generated content and sponsored for paid links.
For the UGC, they’re explicitly mentioning forums.

My opinion is that this is a big step forward, since the vast use of nofollow was killing the idea behind PageRank.

Full announcement here: Official Google Webmaster Central Blog: Evolving “nofollow” – new ways to identify the nature of links

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Changing the code to use “nofollow ugc” seems like a fairly straightforward and safe thing for Discourse to do.

The above is my personal opinion and not necessarily that of Google, LLC