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E-mail Privacy

  1. It seems when I make comments on someone else's blog, it shows them my email address. Is there a way to set this as private? If not, in the future this would be a great idea...

  2. 1 - Don't be logged in when leaving a comment. That way you can input what you want. Some blogs are set up not to require an email address when leaving a comment.

    2 - If they require an email address, throw in a garbage one. There's no checking done.

    3 - My blog, my rules. If I ask for an email address, then you have to put something in the box, even if it's garbage. I normally email a copy of my response as a curtisy. Sort of telling your name when you make a phone call.

  3. Interesting. I appreciate the quick response!

  4. I do understand where you are coming from though. I always suggest sending in a Feedback from your Dashboard with a suggestion such as this one. I really don't see it happening though. It seems like most of the work done with WP seems to lean towards an open format of information. Also it takes two seconds to get a freebe email address now a days.

    Good luck,

  5. "It seems when I make comments on someone else's blog, it shows them my email address. "
    True, it does.

    But do you like to know who comments on your blog?

  6. True, but other blogs generally don't give out this information. That's why I was surprised to receive an email back from a comment. I'm used to other blog websites like Blogger, where while you might need to be logged in, it doesn't give personal information like IP and email address to the contactee. It seems a bit unnecessary to give out such information, and that divulgence of private information might be seen as some as a driving factor to try different sites.


  7. Podz, I want the person to be logged in so I can cut down on spam, but in no way do I think I should know their IP address or email address. I like to read their blog, but this private information isn't necessary for me to give them a comment back. Get what I mean?

  8. I do - sort of.
    I rarely look at the IP stuff. I did when I first started blogging, and sometimes it helps to check something if I want but for the most part I don't 'see' it.
    Email addresses. I assume that if people want to stay anon they will use a throwaway address or make one up (those making one up almost certainly will get yanked by spam software). Others that choose to leave their address is good - how otherwise am I going to distinguish Dave from Dave or even Dave?

    To me, it's private but we are all showing it so it becomes - for the most part - meaningless.

    I do have to say though that the behaviour you see has been in WP since it's inception so the chances of it being removed or altered are low.

  9. Definitely; I do understand that. It's just a little suggestion to keep in mind since some of us to wish to remain anonymous, and don't mind posting our blog or being logged in, but the e-mail address seems a bit unnecessary, and, in my opinion, should be an option for the commenter on whether or not they wish to give that out. Thanks for the responses!

  10. One other side note: it seems comments on blogs are few, and I wonder if, in some way, the lack of privacy is due to this. Certainly not in all ways, but in some. I know that I won't be commenting on anyone else's blog ever again, but I wonder if there are others out there, as well. As you said, I could log out, but that's an inconvenience. Being able to set it as private might encourage others to comment on others' blogs without having to give out private contact information. Just a thought.

  11. Most of my comments are either trackbacks or spam now a days. At least on my sites. Although on the webcomic, I've got one visitor who uses comments to see how far back he has to work until he reaches the latest pic he hasn't seen.

  12. I didn't realise that my email would be given out to blogs that I comment on until someone replied to me. I would much rather my email was kept private, or at least have the option to keep it and the other information private. I use the email that I registered with... which is my personal email address. There's no mention that your email address will be posted when you leave comments on another's blog and I don't particularly want to manage multiple email addresses. My email isn't on my blog and that's where I would expect someone to go if they wanted to find out who was leaving a comment.

    My commenting on another's blog doens' imply I want them to have my email address. I understand it may be meaningless to some, but it isn't to me. Maybe this is something that could be revisited wih a view to having email privacy as an option.

  13. britgirl I would suggest you might consider following through on what drmike suggested. For example WP support has my primary email address. That's the one that I do not wish to make available publicly to avoid being spammed. However, I also have another email address at [email redacted] (free of charge) which I post on all my blogs and use when I leave comments on other people's blogs.
    As far as taking comments from folks without them giving me an email address I say - no thanks. That's my personal preference based on the experience I've had in the past, although you may decide otherwise.

  14. What I want to know is why all the "added information" that comes with the IP number. IP number is fine by why everything else with Arin WhoIs?

  15. I think the answer may be spammer identification and that would be useful for Akismet purposes. I think it's generally one of the reasons a WhoIS search is used for. (Also I'm thinking that drmike is probably not on the forum now as it's midnight on the US east coast. And althouh podz could be on, as he's in the UK, he's probably at GMT + 8 hours.)

  16. Anyone want a gmail address?

    Remember that your email address is only visible to the blog owner. Why would they use that for dodgy purposes? I've been using one of two email addresses on the forums and on blog comments for over 2 years. I get hardly any spam. I honestly don't see what the problem is - like I said above we all have these details because we all use the internet.
    You have no privacy on the internet unless you want to take a lot of laborious work.

    As for ID - if you left just a name on my blog, other stats could mean I could still get your IP, still see the posts you read, maybe find the browser version, screen size and if you have javascript enabled. I could also see where you came from. If I have the right software I might even be able to find out more. So an email address - which could be a throwaway one - actually tells me little.

    Anti-spam methods will usually look at IP addresses too - and the comment form has that. And if that information was collected but not disclosed to anyone then someone would say "Why are you doing this?" so on that count no-one wins.

    Use a throwaway address. There are many providers of such.
    And if you want a gmail address, you can have one if you want.

  17. There is this place that secures your email ID and gives you the ability to create disposable email IDs that self-destruct :)

    Privacy on the internet is tough indeed.

  18. As an aside, I wish the IP link that I see here as the Moderator would lead to a WHOIS lookup. It's a pain sometimes cutting and pasting it in. I find myself doing it a half a dozen times a day around here. :)

  19. Podz - Thanks for the reply. I actually have a gmail address as well as two other email addresses and would rather not have to manage any additional ones (wasn't looking for advice or help on how to get one - thanks all the same) and I may decide to do just that. But that is rather beside the point.

    It simply wasn't clear when registering the blog that leaving a comment meant automatically lgiving your email address to the blog owner as well. In general I usually choose who I give my email address to. And since WP automatically uses the email I registered with, having to go through logging out to get around that is a bit of a pain. I get others email addresses as well, but I don't need them, they are unecessary as is the other info. It isn't huge deal at the moment but whether or not it can or will be changed, I hope it will be at least registered somwhere that some members mentioned it as a concern whether or not everyone shares it.

  20. Britgirl hit my concerns right on the head.

  21. On the World Wide Web there is no such thing as privacy.
    It does not exist..

    If you want to know who comments on your blog, afford that same facility to others.

    If you are that concerned about your email address, do not comment anywhere. You do know you are less likely to get spammed or otherwise by commenting here than giving your email address to your bank or any other so called 'official' organisation?

    Can I suggest that this issue is put in proportion?
    It's an email address. That's all.

  22. Is there any technical reason why it can't be made clear, either upon signup or in the FAQ, that if you comment whilst signed in your email address will be made visible to the blog author(s)?

    This isn't a problem for me as since SSL came in I can't stay logged in anyway, so nine times out of ten I'm commenting while logged out, and if people want me to log in to comment, nine times out of ten I can't be bothered ;) But many of us will have signed up with a personal email address (seeing as how Automattic promised to keep it to themselves and not spam us) and will be disconcerted to find that it's being passed on to fellow bloggers.

  23. I'll pass that on.


    It's been discussed, it's in the faq and I'll pass it on as I said.

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