PSA: Gravatar

Posted by meronpan on December 10, 2008

Are you wondering how users without wordpress accounts have their avatars show up by their comments?  Or how people get their avatars on wordpress.org blogs / other privately hosted blogs?  One answer is gravatar!  It’s a service that lets you register a global avatar that other blogs can recognize based on an e-mail address.

I had originally planned this as a quick post to be immediately followed by a review but left 4 dead ate up my time tonite ^^;;  Will try again tomorrow… but anyhow, on with the psa (public service announcement).


Once you’ve registered an e-mail address and associated an avatar with it, I believe all you need to do is enter that e-mail address when commenting and wordpress.com blogs (or any other gravatar enabled blog) will go fetch the image.  Obviously if you prefer to not disclose any contact info, just make a throw away e-mail account.


When I was started blogging it was driving me crazy trying to figure out how people on Len-Vesper‘s blog got custom avatars while I was stuck with the default.  Perhaps it’s obvious to veterans on the interblags but for me it took quite a while before I stumbled upon any references to gravatar, hence this post, save people some trouble ^^;;


Gravatar was purchased by wordpress so wordpress.com users should have their profile icon automatically registered as their gravatar.   It should be in the usual place – go to your profile settings (either click your name in the upper right corner of the dashboard or in the menu on the left, it’s under Users -> Your Profile)  – and your gravatar will be displayed on the right.


In slightly related news, wordpress.com blogs can now assign a “blog picture” which is used as the avatar for pingbacks and the tiny icon next to your blog’s url in the browser.  That tiny smudge next to this blog’s url is the tiny version of the horo pic up top, if anyone was wondering ^^;


So there you have it.  If you’re tired of having the blue gravatar icon when you comment here or elsewhere, just go make a gravatar!


14 Responses to “PSA: Gravatar”

  1. Panther said

    Gravatars have been around quite some time now, so it comes as a surprise to me you had no idea haha. Well at least you know now.

    Still, for most WP bloggers (as in, self-hosted) they would have known by going around looking for plugins, and I far prefer animated avatars (what are known as Google Comvatars as a plugin) which I think WP.com does not provide. But these eat space on your own host, so it might not be feasible for most if they have to think about their bandwidth cap.

    Good move to inform others by the way. :)

  2. phossil said

    I was looking for a way to put your avatar image in WP blogs without to register in it! I’ve heard of gravatar but never took to much attention to check it out.

    I think Im gonna try it!!

  3. lovelyduckie said

    That was a wonderfully informative post. Thank you! Now my avatar hopefully won’t just be some boring default image.

  4. xJAYMANx said

    @MP: Hey, better late than never, eh? I didn’t figure it out till this past August! And only because Gordon mentioned it on his blog too, lol. ^_^;

  5. Q said

    The fact that it has to be all lowercase and at least 4 letters means I can’t have “Q” as my Gravatar… That’s why I’m stuck with the default all the time -_-…

  6. meronpan said

    @panther my personal discovery was actually some months ago, but still many months after i had started commenting/blogging ^^; but anyhow yeah i figured it was high time to share the knowledge since it’s not so obvious for those using wp.com hosting and such

    @phossil should fill your need perfectly ^_^

    @lovelyduckie looks like it’s working perfectly. rider! ^_^

    @xjaymanx hahah yeah. hmm i can’t remember if i missed gordon’s mention of it or if i had already found out and thus didn’t pay attention… ^^;

    @q i thought the detection was based on your e-mail, not your alias?

  7. Q said

    Yea but they won’t allow my nickname as “Q”…

  8. meronpan said

    @q hmm so they match on both nickname & e-mail? that’s too bad ;_;

  9. Lavian said

    Meronpan, thank you for the secret. :)

  10. Lavian said

    ahh… my avatar just too small to have a look… =_=”

  11. Blowfish said

    You learn a new thing everyday!

    Left4Dead is EVIL! It ate away alot of the small free time i have these days.Tanks are truly pure evil when playing expert mode…

  12. meronpan said

    @lavian glad to help ^^ it is tough finding an avatar that still looks good at low resolutions ^^;;

    @blowfish expert is soooo insane! i’ve been trying with my roommate and we can only get past 1 or 2 chapters in a campaign, not even close to finishing an expert campaign ;_;

  13. xJAYMANx said

    @Meronpan: Hahaha, so u either missed it, didn’t pay attention, or can’t remember, lol. All the good qualities in an otaku! ^_^

    P.S. Btw, there’s gotta be a way to get notification of your replies to mine *without* using an RSS feeder. >o<

    • meronpan said

      @xjaymanx ugh i know! they totally need a “notify me of replies” feature built into wordpress.com -_- danny needs one for his site too, for that matter ^^; i attempted to subscribe to the individual posts at one point, but that was insane and I’d always forget… subscribing to all comments for a blog quickly becomes overwhelming… these are not optimal situations!!!

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