So if this is true (..not saying anyone would doubt your word of course Matt ) this is massive news and is effectively the end of Pagerank Sculpting as we know it, in fact it looks as though it may have already died a little while ago..
Lisa Barone at Outspoken media has just possibly published the SEO scoop of the year, following a conversation with Matt Cutts. Speaking on Pagerank sculpting..
“It seems like you supported PageRank sculpting a year ago and now it seems like you don’t support it anymore. Why is that and will it become a negative indicator?”
MC. No, it won’t hurt your site. You can do your links however you want. You can use it to eliminate links to sign in forms and whatnot, but its a better use of your time to fix your site architecture and fix the problem from the core. Suppose you have 10 links and 5 of them are nofollowed.
There’s this assumption that that the other 5 links get ALL that PageRank and that may not be as true anymore (your leftover PageRank will now “evaporate”, says Matt.). You can’t shunt your PageRank where you want it to go. It’s not a penalty. It’s not going to get you in trouble. However, it’s not as effective.
It’s a better use of your time to go make new content and do all the other things. If you’re using nofollow to change how PageRank flows, it’s like a band-aid. It’s better to build your site how you want PageRank to flow from the beginning.
Danny follow up – Why is it less effective?
He (Matt) talks about the YouTube case and talks pleasantly around the issue about how YouTube sculpted their pages for users so that “random videos” didn’t shoot up. Initially, if you had 10 links and 5 were nofollowed, the other 5 would get all that PageRank. That’s not the case anymore. They didn’t it change it because people started sculpting.
Michael Gray: If you’re trying to mitigate the nofollow, doesn’t that say it’s working the way we want it to?
Matt: We’re not trying to mitigate it. [Matt's doing the Google shuffle trying to get out of the clenches of Graywolf.] He ends up explaining his way out rather well. Graywolf seems settled. For now.
So it’s official, PR sculpting v1.0 is dead, Long live PR Sculpting v2.0, which is sculpting it into your link structure from the very beginning, or SEO by design as we call it