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HTML - href rel=nofollow for urls. Stop SPAM from getting a rating on search engines

I've been playing with Media Wiki on my Linux web server. This is the Wiki engine software used to power Wikipedia.

I noticed that one of the options was to turn on - rel="nofollow" on external urls.

What this does is provide a means of preventing an external web site link from giving a site a boost in the search engine ratings.

It doesn't prevent anyone from clicking on the link, or have a negative effect against a site, it just means that the search engines will ignore the link from a rating point of view.
Google supports this option as well as other search engines such as Yahoo.

This is therefore recommended for anywhere that a url can be edited or submitted by a user. Typically this includes Wikis, forums and blog comments.

For more information see: Google Blogspot - preventing comment

If you view the source of this post, you will notice that the above link includes the rel=nofollow option.