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I'm wondering if am I missing the benefit to have those linked directly, since they are so close related to site theme.
Would you personally remove the link to click counter in order to gain some google love related to linked sites?
[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 12:24 am (utc) on Sep. 23, 2008]
[edit reason] removed specifics [/edit]
If you remove the script you are definitely passing PageRank. So Google will scrutinze them a lot more for evidence of link selling.
That's the downside, or at least one of them. One upside may be that Google uses those links to better understand your page's relevance.
using the link: operator I have seen evidence that Google counts these redirects as backlinks
Google's behaviour when it comes to backlinks and redirects is very interesting - they would show backlinks to a URL A that redirects to URL B as backlinks for link: URL B command. This certainly does not happen for all redirects but it does happen. In theory this should channel all PR value of URL A backlinks to be assigned to URL B.