MySpace Changes Links in Comments
Update (2007.04.25): Here is the “official” announcement by Tom when you log into your MySpace profile.
Latest Update: Apr 25, 2007 12:00pm, PST
Hey everybody, we just launched another program to stop dirty spammers from hasseling you. When you input a link in myspace it may be converted to a redirect link. You’ll start seeing them around the site. They look like this: msplinks.com/adf9sd9f. These links are legit and we are creating them. They are not viruses or whatever else your conspiracy theorist friends told you. They still point to their original url, but let us easily turn off links to spam, phishing, or virus sites. booyah!
News and speculations has been circling on the new changes to links within comments on MySpace. It appears that MySpace recently rolled out a change in which links in comments are posted as an encoded link from http://www.msplinks.com/. So, if you post a link to http://stickiwidgets.com in a comment, it will show up as something like http://www.msplinks.com/somerandomcodehere. As with the typical MySpace changes, this only applies to new comments and old comments are intact.
This change has many implications as other have suggested and pointed out. MySpace will have much more control over comment links now. They will be able to filter, redirect, approve, deny and track outgoing links. This may not necessarily be a bad thing, but it all depends on what they do with this power. Based on history though, it doesn’t look good. MySpace has blocked external links from Flash widgets and blocked some domains entirely .
One effect is that links in MySpace comments will no longer provide any link backs and SEO benefits. This can be good in cutting down on comment spammers, whether intentional or not. However, we’re not entirely convinced that MySpace is doing this purely to protect its users from comment spam.