April 03, 2013 | Posted by Beau Lebens
Did you know that your Gravatar.com account has always been a WordPress.com account? It’s true.
Back in 2007 we (Automattic) acquired Gravatar. Heading into 2008 we rewrote it in PHP, and ever since then, it’s been using the same integrated user system as WordPress.com for accounts. Previously we handled that “behind the scenes,” but we found that it made things pretty confusing for everyone. We’ve now switched over to using WordPress.com Connect exclusively, which allows you to explicitly connect Gravatar and WordPress.com, and to use your WordPress.com credentials to log into Gravatar. That’s one less set of login credentials to worry about!
This is not a real button
- If you had a Gravatar account before, it’s actually always been a WordPress.com account!
- When you try to log in at Gravatar.com now, you will be asked to do so using WordPress.com Connect.
- Once you’re logged into WordPress.com, you then grant Gravatar access to use your WordPress.com account.
- After that, you’ll use your WordPress.com username and password to log in to Gravatar, for evermore.
You might be wondering about existing accounts and creating new accounts, and what your options are:
- If you have a Gravatar account, it’s actually also a WordPress.com account. You can use those details to log into WordPress.com, then grant access to Gravatar.
- If you already have a WordPress.com account, then you can use that to log into Gravatar.com now.
- If you don’t have a WordPress.com (or Gravatar) account, you can create one for free (no need for a blog, although you can do that also if you like!) and then you can grant access to Gravatar to get started.
The beauty of switching to WordPress.com Connect is that it means your account information is all managed in one, super-secure place (WordPress.com), and it avoids all sorts of complexity and potential for problems with password resets, account activations, and more. We’re in the process of switching all of our services to using WordPress.com Connect, so you can use the same account to log into our other nifty products, including VaultPress, Akismet and Polldaddy.
There’s a bunch more info on the WordPress.com Connect FAQ, which will hopefully help clear up any other questions you have.
January 14, 2013 | Posted by michelle w.
We can’t really call Gravatars “globally recognized avatars” unless they’re realistically available to people the world over, and that means making sure everyone who wants to use one has language access. That’s why Gravatar, like every Automattic joint, relies on a fantastic group of international volunteers to translate almost everything we create, ensuring that what we do is globally accessible.
In the past few weeks, we’ve completed the French and Korean translations of en.gravatar.com, bringing the total number of available languages to 43, from Georgian to Norwegian to Bengali.
(If you’ve never heard of Georgian, take a minute to click over — it’s a beautiful script!)
If you visit any of the non-English Gravatar pages, you might still see some content in English — that’s because almost all these pages are works-in-progress. If you’d like to contribute to one of them, or start a translation for a language that’s not currently on the list, we’d love to have you! Just click on “help translate” next to any of the currently available languages, or visit the Gravatar GlotPress page to see exactly what still needs to be done, learn how to become a translator, and add your language to the list.
October 09, 2012 | Posted by Barry
Last week we made some changes to how default images, sometimes called “fallback images”, are handled in Gravatar URLs. The purpose of these changes was to enhance the security of the Gravatar API and protect the many of millions of users who view billions of Gravatars every day. The majority of you will not notice any change – which is good! If you’re a developer though, you should keep these recent updates in mind.
You can read all about how default images work on the implementation page, but the short version is:
Default images must be publicly accessible via a simple HTTP or HTTPS request on the standard ports of 80 and 443, respectively. They must have a valid image file extension of
If your default image is not publicly accessible, doesn’t have a file extension, is not actually an image, requires HTTP Authentication, or is otherwise unavailable to a normal web request, it cannot be used as the fallback/default image for a Gravatar. On the backend, we are now processing default images through a new service we have been working on called Photon, which we will talk more about soon.
We’ve also introduced a new default image which you can use, called ‘blank’. Just use
?d=blank and you’ll get a transparent PNG image in whatever size you asked for if the requested Gravatar doesn’t exist. More details on this are on the image implementation page as well.
July 30, 2012 | Posted by Erica
Now that all of Gravatar.com is optimized for retina display, you’ll be looking extra sharp to anyone who views your Gravatar profile or Hovercard from a device like the iPhone 4.
But are you looking your best? If you’re using a low-resolution image of yourself that you cropped from a friend’s Facebook photo two years ago, then it’s time for an update Log in to Gravatar.com and upload a new image now, so that you can get a full-resolution version at all sizes, on all sites.
If you’re one of the many sites that uses Gravatars, you’ll also be happy to know that we’ve increased the maximum size image you can request, all the way up to 2048px! That means you can go ahead and implement higher resolution user images for all devices, high-dpi or otherwise.
We’d love to hear about any Retina-compatible implementations of Gravatar in the comments.
January 26, 2012 | Posted by Barry
It’s been a while since we have posted about the current scale of Gravatar. Since that post in 2008, things have changed quite a bit. We are now serving over 100,000 requests per second. That is over 8.6 billion requests per day – more than the number of people currently alive.
With the help of our partners, Edgecast and Dyn, Gravatar is faster than ever. Distributing content across the world allows the majority of requests to complete in under 100 milliseconds – that is 4 times faster than the blink of an eye! No wonder more people are using Gravatar every day.
In 2007, we replaced the (ugly) image URL
/avatar.php?gravatar_id=HASH with the (pretty) URL
/avatar/HASH. As firm believers in backwards compatibility, we continue to support both URL formats. In order to ensure the freshest content is served to all users, we now redirect the old URLs to the new ones. We suggest that if you are still using the old
avatar.php?gravatar_id=HASH style URLs that you switch to the new style – it will be prettier and faster for your users. If you have any questions about this change, please refer to our documentation.
Since Gravatar support has been added to WordPress, there are millions of WordPress sites using Gravatar every day. But did you know these other sites also use Gravatar?
Battlefield 3 Battlelog
Digital Photography Review
Want to learn how to integrate Gravatar with your website? Check out our implemetation documentation.
September 29, 2011 | Posted by Alex Mills
Electronic Arts has implemented Gravatar in their upcoming Battlefield 3 video game’s online profile and game management site Battlelog.
Battlelog is the new browser interface for the game, allowing you to find friends, servers to play on, groups to join as well as your stats. Wherever a user is listed on the site, be it on your friends list or on the list of people currently playing on a server, their Gravatar is shown.
July 12, 2011 | Posted by Beau Lebens
Did you know that in addition to the hCard markup on profile pages, we support a number of other completely open, standards-based formats for accessing profile data on Gravatar? These formats are all accessed using a similar method to how Gravatar images have been requested. Full details are provided in the Developer Resources section of the site which has been completely refreshed! Here are the formats that are available:
- QR Codes
The raw data formats (JSON, XML, PHP) are based on the Portable Contacts standard to improve interoperability with existing tools and systems, while the other formats are existing standards for sharing certain pieces of data. We’ll be providing some example implementations to demonstrate just how powerful these options can be, and I’m sure that we’ll start seeing some creative implementations from folks in the near future.
Here was the initial announcement around the coming profile data formats which I made at WordCamp San Francisco 2010 in May. You can also view the video on WordPress.tv.
July 06, 2011 | Posted by Scott Berkun
In our never ending quest to bring awesome profile power to gravatar users, we’ve added support for three awesome services: Gowalla, GoodReads and Google Profiles. And yes, it is true, given we are called Gravatar, we do have a secret preference for G named services.
You can add these new services to your Gravatar Profile the same way you add any other service. Just click “Edit My Profile” under the “My Account” menu at the top of Gravatar.com and then go to the “Verified Services” section. Enjoy!
February 17, 2011 | Posted by Beau Lebens
A friend of mine pointed out this pretty slick extension for Gmail called socialGmail. It adds Gravatar support into your Gmail account, placing Gravatars in your mail listings, and also within conversation view. Here are a couple of screenshots (taken from the extension page) so you can see how it works: