A fresh report from Barry Schwartz reveals that Microsoft is now actively banning sites for engaging in link exchanges with non-relevant sites. Fascinating.
As Barry also indicates, Google simply discounts these links, making them a waste of your time and effort. In addition, we learned during the BigDaddy update, that Google also punishes sites for whom a large portion of their links come from link exchanges. What Yahoo does is less clear.
But in any event, the message is clear. Don’t waste your time with this stuff. Not only do search engines consider it spam. They will punish you for it. Time to create great content and get creative. Learn how to earn the link. Produce great content. Find the people who value it, and get them to link to you.