But a new study by Reboot Online says they have pretty good evidence suggesting otherwise. Go ahead, read the study and see how they concluded that "we have proved they do have a positive impact if used correctly." In fact, Rand Fishkin of Moz posted on Twitter that his "conclusion" is that "linking out to good sites is almost certainly a net benefit for how Google considers your pages."
Here are his tweets:
Conclusion: linking out to good sites is almost certainly a net benefit for how Google considers your pages.— Rand Fishkin (@randfish) February 22, 2016
I really do enjoy it when folks call out Google, indirectly, as lying about their ranking algorithm. Some do it just because they have personal experience with SEO and some do it using a lot of data.
Do you think Google lied about external links or there are other factors at play. Again, please read the study before commenting on this.
Forum discussion at Twitter.