I can certainly appreciate your dilemma, MC4210. I have been writing 8-12 promotional articles per week for a handful of sites for almost a year now, and I am starting to wonder of there is any point. Yes, articles links are highly devalued! Article directories are the new link farms! They seem to have to more weight in certain engines, but in general my feeling is that they are disposable links. They are great for short-term site establishment, but this is a hopeless strategy for long-term link development. I often wonder why I don't focus on developing more quality content for my sites, instead of giving it away for #*$!e links. I would suggest finding relevent, quality sites in your niche and writing for them in exchange for links. I think we have to be much more creative in our approach to link development in this day and age. Opinions, anyone?