If I mention a public company on this blog, and somebody else posts a link to me on Yahoo! Finance, am I constrained with respect to buying or selling that company’s stock? As absurd as it might seem, I suspect the practical answer is yes. Certainly the person posting to Y!F would be subject to such constraints; there have been many cases regarding that “pump and dump” tactic over the years, and rightly so. I suppose that two unscrupulous people could try to avoid such scrutiny by having the blogger do the trading so that the Y!F poster’s hands appear clean. I’m not even sure it would work, and it would require a far more influential blog than this one to have any effect on price, but it’s certainly not hard to imagine someone trying.

I wasn’t planning to buy or sell anything I’ve mentioned here, but it does irk me a bit that somebody I don’t even know could create that kind of trouble for me. If I ever do start picking individual stocks, I guess I’ll also have to start paying attention to inbound links as well.