Gravatar and WordPress.com, Together Forever

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!

wpcc-button

This is not a real button :)

  1. If you had a Gravatar account before, it’s actually always been a WordPress.com account!
  2. When you try to log in at Gravatar.com now, you will be asked to do so using WordPress.com Connect.
  3. Once you’re logged into WordPress.com, you then grant Gravatar access to use your WordPress.com account.
  4. 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.

31 Responses

  1. WHEW! I thought I was going crazy!!! Thank you for explaining that.

  2. Roy McKenzie says:

    I suggested to my employer that we use Gravatars for our “About” page so that employees could control their own image on our site. Now that it’s requiring people to sign up for WordPress, people feel very confused and unsure. They feel like they have to have a blog in order to use Gravatar. How do I explain this to them?

  3. unfindable says:

    Well it seems to me this login procedure isn’t exactly working like a charm, more like a lottery. The question to authorize keeps popping up in pop up over pop up even when cookies are enabled. This happens in both firefox for Android and windows.
    And then, sometimes all of a sudden, I’m logged in. Or not. Pffff.

    • Beau Lebens says:

      Are you accessing the site in English, or via one of the other subdomains (for example es.gravatar.com)? We just fixed a bug where some of the other subdomains had trouble recognizing the cookies that are involved in the process, so hopefully it’s a bit smoother now.

      • winstmethode says:

        I’m having the same issue @ subdomain nl.gravatar.com. Can’t login

      • Beau Lebens says:

        Can you try again please? We literally just fixed this (hopefully) about an hour ago.

      • Kyle Callahan says:

        I’m having the same issues. It won’t let me login at all. I click the button, it does some stuff, then comes back with the warning: “Please make sure you activate your account and grant Gravatar access. Click the button above to try again.”

        I’ve gone into WordPress, revoked Gravatar access, then granted it again, but that didn’t work either.

      • Beau Lebens says:

        Another fix went out — can you please try again?

      • Kyle Callahan says:

        It’s working now. Thank for the help!

      • winstmethode says:

        Works now, awesome

  4. Great app, the best tool to create a profile in wordpress ..

  5. andyjwarnock says:

    This change seems to have created a problem. I had a WordPress account that I’ve just reactivated and started a new blog with, but also created a Gravatar account a few days ago, completely separately, and just as these changes were taking place.
    I now have the usernames andywarnock and andyjwarnock, but there seems to be no way to connect the two, and I now can’t change the email address on my original account. Surely there are other people who have unwittingly and unnecessarily ended up with two accounts? I just want to be known as andywarnock across the two services!

    • Beau Lebens says:

      Because an account requires an email address to exist, the best way (and I know it’s a pain) to handle this is:

      – add a different email address to the account you don’t want any more on Gravatar
      – switch to that being the primary address
      – remove your main address from that account
      – add that email address to the other account (the one you want to keep)
      – now stop using the old account on gravatar (and you can hide the profile if you like), and only use the other (main account)

      HTH.

  6. ernstki says:

    I realize it’s to Automattic’s advantage to be able to report how many zillions of WordPress.com accounts they have registered, and it’s convenient for users of both services to have a common set of credentials, but isn’t this kind of violating the trust of the community of other sites built up around Gravatar that only rely on Gravatar.com for the avatars?

    I know what WordPress is, I know who Automattic is (and implicitly trust you guys), but my GitHub coding buddies don’t. Having to sign up for a service they know nothing about just to change their avatar is, from their perspective, kind of… suspicious.

    Isn’t it bad enough that the world has Facebook Connect, and that many major sites require a Facebook account to leave comments? This feels like that.

    • ernstki says:

      So Gravatar.com accounts always *were* WordPress.com accounts. Then why scare away new users by bouncing them three ways to Tuesday just to sign up for a new account?

    • Beau Lebens says:

      As your other comment mentions, Gravatar accounts have always been WordPress.com accounts, we’re just being more clear about that now. A lot of people find that they actually already have a WordPress.com account also, so previously that would create a lot of confusion when they tried to create one on Gravatar, only to be told that their email address was already in use. By formalizing and requiring an actual WordPress.com login flow to happen, we can provide users with the additional security in place there, without trying to reproduce it all over on Gravatar as well.

      Users have always had to create an account of some sort to set up a Gravatar, the only difference now is that that’s (explicitly) a WordPress.com account. Previously it was a WordPress.com account that was masquerading as a Gravatar account. Hopefully the convenience of a single account/set of credentials will, over time, outweigh any confusion around WP.com’s inclusion in the equation.

  7. Lorenzo Caum says:

    Moving all the services under WordPress.com will be easier to manage as a end user since you’ll only need to remember one set of credentials. I use 1Password (password manager) so I just removed the extra entry for Gravatar and logged in with the entry for WordPress.com

  8. tkingsley2 says:

    I’ve been trying for three days now to get my confirmation email, I’ve checked the inbox and junk mail…still nothing. It’s holding me up from progress, I’m really disappointed.

  9. Veda says:

    So if I have a WordPress account and I Try to register on gravatar with same email address then Gravatar registration form should show that “This Email Address has already an account”?

    Also few months back I was willing to change my avatar on wordpress because my old avatar was my old blog logo. I tried a lot in my wordpress Dashboard but I saw no option. Finally I did a google search and found that I have already got an account on gravatar. Phewwww I remember those 30 minutes.

  10. Andy says:

    And just out of curiosity: how do I delete my Gravatar account without creating a wordpress account before?

  11. shantal says:

    At first I was like whutthafug. I went along with the signing up with wordpress. I’ve always hated the fact that my first and last name was always just out there. I remember a long time ago I did have a wordpress account with only my first name. I asked for my password and WAHLA! I got my new gravatar account with my old wordpress I had never in a million years thought I would use since I use Expression Engine. So I am hoping I don’t have to see the logo wordpress as much. Cause I really just enjoyed how simple and basic gravatar was. :( Now what is going to happen to my first and last name account on gravatar?

  12. CharlieDarwin says:

    Have rudimentary understanding of I.T. in general but this site is SO easy and self-explanatory, where previously avatars were a bit of a black art. Thanks for your efforts!

  13. kcfoxlimited says:

    I can’t log into Gravatar. I get this error message: “Please make sure you activate your account and grant Gravatar access.” even though I have activated my account and granted Gravatar access. Could you help?

an    joint
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