Follow Self Pings

The Problem

Wordpres creates all links to comment author's site or pingbacks/trackbacks with "nofollow external" . This includes links to your own blog. Apparently this is bad for your pagerank according to this post:Pinging Your Own Blog Posts? Good or Bad?

The Solution

On that article mentioned above, the author suggested that you can use a plugin that would make wordpress stop creating pingback links to your own blog. I didn't like that idea so here's mine: a plugin that will make wordpres NOT add "external nofollow" to the pings to your own blog.

The plugin doesn't require any configuration, just download, install , activate and forget about it.


UPDATE: The plugin is now hosted in wordpress plugins directory. That means you can install it dirrectly from  your wordpress admin or go to it's page to download it: Follow Self Pings Plugin

The first version of the plugin had a small bug that prevented it from working on blogs that were installed in one directory and had the home page pointing to something else. This bug is fixed in version 0.2 . You should be able to  update it from the plugin admin.

26 thoughts on “Follow Self Pings

  1. I don’t know if I believe that having nofollow links to your blog like pingbacks can hurt your rankings. As far back as I can think, google has never penalized anybody for links to their site, regardless of the attribute. Do you have any links regarding that? (Nice plugin, by the way)

    1. it’s not that having links back to your blog is the problem. The problem is that the page rank that is passed from a page to the other
      is divided between all links on a page but only those who don’t have nofollow get the page rank. Thus the links back to your blog in the pingbacks
      will not transfer any page rank even if page rank is lost on them. This is why it is better to follow them then to nofollow.
      Matt Cuts explains better how the page rank mechanism works in this article:

  2. The rationale for this plugin is sound but when I activated it it didn’t seem to dofollow existing self trackbacks. What it did do was to put a feed from this blog onto my dashboard.

    1. The plugin does put a feed of this blog on your dashboard. you can disable the feed easily by clicking the “Screen options” button at the top of your dashboard, but the plugin should also remove the “nofollow” attribute from your self pings ( remember these are only the trackbacks that have the same domain as your blog ) . If you can give me an example where it didn’t work and more details about your blog ( version, pluggins installed ) I will gladly look into it to make it work.

  3. I plan to install the plugin shortly. However, I’d recommend you disclose the dashboard changes in the description. If you leave it an unannounced surprise, you’re like to attract a fair amount of criticism (e.g., spam) whereas an upfront disclosure can mitigate that. Two cents for your consideration.

    1. There are no actual dashboard changes. The plugin just adds a widget to the dashboard with RSS feeds from my blog. The widget is easy to disable by editing screen options. I’m not the only one doing this. Actually I got the idea and original code from Joost de Valk – ( it’s gpl and he uses it in all of his plugins. )
      It’s a small way of self promotion that shouldn’t really bother anyone.

  4. Hi Mihai I have been struggling with the self ping-backs for a while. I have no plugins right now to handle them (not yours or the popular No Self Pings on WP Directory).
    So my understanding is that in general, Google likes that a blog links to its own content b/c it shows the relevance of content.
    Let’s take a page of the blog with Post A on it.
    By installing the No Self Ping plugin, you advocate that it actually decreases the page-rank of the posts that have pinged Post A (and are displayed on the trackback/pingback comment list).
    By installing your plugin, it prevents this and counts all of the other posts with pingback to Post A into the page rank.
    Does it go back and clean up all the other previous ones too or does it only do future ones?
    I trust it will not send the automated WP email every time I interlink to approve or does that still happen too?
    THANK YOU !!!!

    1. It’s just a matter of passing page rank or not for your pingbacks.
      Until a few months ago google would divide the amount of page rank it would pass from a page to the “followed” links ( without nofollow )
      Then google changed their algorithm to divide the page rank by ALL links but the result of the division would only be passed to the links with no nofollow. This means that if you have a page with a high rank and you want to pass some of that rank to another page then you better have as few as possible links on the “source” page otherwise the page where you want to send page rank will get very little of it. If this is what you’re looking for then it’s better to not have any pingbacks at all. If you want to get even more extreme why not remove links from comment author too :). No self pings helps little with this because it only removes your own pingbacks, but a lot of page rank is wasted on other pingbacks and and comment author links.

      But if you like having pingbacks ( like I do ) then why not recover some of that page rank that is wasted on them anyway and this is where my plugin helps you .

      My plugin will “clean up” all self pingbacks, not just new ones but it doesn’t have anything to do with the emails you get because of the pingbacks.

      1. Thank you again. So the page rank would take ALL the links mentioned on the page, including of course those from all comments and trackbacks, and divide it amongst all of them. If I add the other plugin, it will REMOVE my own pingbacks but still keep the division to all other comments/trackbacks.
        With your plugin, self-pings are allowed and you change all the links from a self-ping to a Follow (from NoFollow) so the Google Page Rank then will include all of those links in the ranking? Thanks!!!

        1. I think the plugin that removes my own pingbacks doesn’t really makes sense since ( especially on popular blogs ) there will be a lot more comments and trackbacks to other sites then your own. So you “lose” a lot more rank to external sites then your own.
          And now if you install my plugin you don’t really lose page rank on your own pingbacks anymore.

          1. Now I get it and I am very excited. I will install it tonight (I also ran it by my brilliant little brother who understand Google search engines better than anyone I know and he is very impressed by this! So thank you so much!!!!!!!

  5. So last question for you – I installed the plugin. It sems to be pretty transparent, and I wanted to just see if there is a way to tell whether it’s working fine or not since all self-pings still show but the no-follow to them is modified!
    Thanks so much!

    1. just look at the html source for a page that has some self pings or use firebug to inspect the link for a self ping on your blog. The “a” element should NOT have any rel=”nofollow” . Compare it with the link on the comment author name which has the nofollow.

  6. Hi Mihai, I am hoping I can still bug you about this months later :)!
    So I noticed recently that my own comments – responses to others’ comments – have a nofollow. Does your plugin have a way to REMOVE that so my own comments on my posts have a dofollow?

    Source selection from a comment I put in my blog:

    I like to have that for my commenters but not for myself.
    Thank you!

    1. It seems that at the time I only wanted it to work for pingbacks and trackbacks.
      It can easily be modified to work with normal comments too.
      Open wp-content/plugins/follow-self-pings/follow-self-pings.php
      look for this line:
      if($comment->comment_type==’pingback’ || $comment->comment_type==’trackback’){

      Replace it with ” if(true) { “

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