Avatar vs. gravatar

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  • #388637

    @john, if you are worried about privacy, stay off the internet, and how the hell does a small square image that YOU chose to upload, that appears next to your comments cause any invasion of privacy? If it does, YOU uploaded the image, so you can upload something else.

    Upload a blank white gravatar, or some sort of nonsense graphical pattern.


    Originally you had the option of uploading a gravatar or not. You chose to upload one.



    Seriously, DO NOT USE THE MOST POWERFUL COMMUNICATIONS DEVICE IN HISTORY if your concern is protection of privacy.

    And if it is, read the comment I left above. Poof, problem solved!


    @victoria, sorry you have gotten lost in this thread. I would suggest starting a new thread since this one is heading off in different directions. I’ll watch for the other thread. Also, please include a link to your blog when you post since we will have to take a look in order to help.



    Why should I stay off the internet because I value liberty and privacy. That is like saying a woman should not dress attractively if she doesn’t want to get raped. I have the right to liberty and privacy period, which does not include you trying to tell me to stay off the internet. It is my choice what I choose to do, as long as I am not impinging the rights of somebody else.

    Does a thief have the right to know how much cash you have in your purse? I think not. Well then, stay home and don’t go anywhere, don’t carry any cash and don’t wear any clothes, oh because a thief might want those too. Of course, you don’t have anything to hide. All those arguments are bass ackwards. How did I get in the middle of this anyway. I disagree with taking anyone’s information and spreading it all around the internet. That is not such a novel concept. It’s a matter of individual choice, vs the absence of individuality in the face of corporate domination.



    how the hell does a small square image that YOU chose to upload, that appears next to your comments cause any invasion of privacy?

    Because an image that was uploaded to be used on wordpress has been turned into a Mark-Identication of that person that they now carry around wherever they travel or post on the internet. This is an attempt at turning people into machines with walking around bar codes – images – gravatars whatever.


    [editorial opinion]

    So log out when you post on other sites outside wordpress.COM and use a throw-away email address, and don’t put a link to your blog. I do that in some cases where I don’t want some raging flame war on another blog spilling over and onto mine, but I want to make a comment. Or change your gravatar to a simple block of color – or white.

    Having your gravatar limited to showing only on wordpress.COM blogs does what? Anyone who comes to a wordpress.COM blog that you have commented on, or to this public technical support forum can see your gravatar.

    I think you are wrongly assuming a sense of security at wordpress.COM that simply isn’t here, AND THAT IS NO FAULT OF WORDPRESS.COM, it is just the reality of the internet. Every time you comment on a blog here you are giving your email address and IP address to the blog owner. Tell me how you know for certain that the blog owner will hold that information in strict confidence? Are wordpress.COM bloggers somehow magically more trustworthy than bloggers who are self-hosted or on another platform?And you are worried about a gravatar?

    WordPress.COM is not a gated and guarded community. It is an open public community. There are no security checkpoints, no metal detectors, no X-Ray machines. No one goes through any background checks before they can read a blog here.

    Quite frankly, this discussion baffles me. There is no such thing as privacy and there hasn’t been for decades. Sad, but that is current state of reality.

    [/editorial opinion]



    John, an avatar IS an image identifier. You uploaded it for the purpose of identifying yourself. If you do not wish to be identified, sign out and don’t comment. If you wish to comment while obscuring your identity to some degree, get a different username or comment anonymously, using a different email.

    It’s simple. It is SIMPLE.



    That rape comment, John, was just offensive. This is a communications tool, not a geographical space. We are all here for the purpose of communicating. If you do not wish to do so under a pseudonym (and I haven’t a fucking clue what your real name is, do I? Do I?) pick a DIFFERENT pseudonym or don’t engage in conversations on this platform.

    And do NOT use rape metaphors lightly.


    I think the solution is a simple “use gravatar?” function on the comment form. I don’t see why such a function wouldn’t be included. Because the Internet generally is not privacy-friendly is not a reason to employ what means we can. Short of that, using a different email address will turn the gravatar off.


    Hi to all,

    A couple things re this thread (which has wandered quite a way from where it started and which I started out of honest confusion, and some reluctance to create what I’m calling a ‘traveling’ avatar).

    First, no one answered one of my questions from Aug 12 (perhaps it can’t be answered), but how many and what kinds of sites might enable gravatar? Just curious as to the thinking about this…

    Second, in reply to your question, Sacredpath, from Aug 12, re why it is “so different to have one’s wordpress avatar remain limited to wordpress? Is it any safer here?”, this is what I’d like to say. It’s not so much a safety issue, of course. I’ve enough knowledge of the web to know that ‘any and all’ can and do move about it…It’s more about having options, and control (or, at least, an illusion of control!).

    I’d like to have the choice to create on WordPress an old-fashioned, stick-to-Wordpress avatar image OR to create a gravatar image, and let it blow in the winds of the web.

    This also goes to issues of my identity here on WordPress, and on other web sites–the self that I bring to my blog, compared to the self that I bring to my email, or to a social networking site. Don’t worry, these selves are all one of a whole, but they are–to some degree or other–different, and that is a good deal of what makes the net fun and different.

    This issue really isn’t worth getting into an on-going bruhaha over… I would just like, as I think some others would too, the option of a ‘non-traveling’ avatar.


    Forgot to add, that I like the comment from onfollowingchrist that–and I’m paraphrasing here–“because the internet generally is not privacy-friendly we shouldn’t takes steps to enable (privacy)”.

    But, as I said above, this issue, for me, is more about control over how I am identified on the web, than about privacy and safety on the web, whatever that means.



    1) Here is a list of sites that CAN run Gravatars, if they choose:
    Software Plugins/Hacks/How-Tos

    * MovableType
    – Gravatar Plugin
    – CommentBodyPlusGravatar Plugin
    – Dynamic PHP Plugin
    * WordPress Gravatar Plugin
    * TextPattern Hack
    * Expression Engine Plugin
    * PMachine Hack
    * Nucleus Plugin
    * Drupal Module
    * YACS How-To
    * Blojsom Plugin
    * Ruby on Rails
    * Smarty
    * OSX Leopard Address Book Plugin
    * Pivot/PivotX
    * Joomla
    * IP.Board
    * Geeklog

    Blogging Services

    * Blogger
    * LiveJournal
    2) Right now it’s not an option to separate your Gravatar from the email address that WordPress.com knows you by. You might want to contact staff and request that it become an option: http://support.wordpress.com/contact

    Gravatars and WP.com avatars were not identical until quite recently. Presumably the change would not be as difficult now as it would be in six months.



    Thanks for this info, I’ve had a few probs too.


    Thank you, raincoaster, for the helpful list and for the link to contact support at WP–I think I will make the request. For the time being, it’s looks like I won’t have a personalized avatar/gravatar, but who knows what the future will bring?


    I really don’t see the problem…if I make a comment on Blogger or any other ,I have the choice to choose my identity and my WP avatar doesn’t stick to me !
    …Maybe I didn’t understand what it’s all about,anyway I know now the difference between gravatar and avatar: there is none :)

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