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Gravatars

In this video, let’s talk about how to use gravatars. Now if you have been blogging for a while and especially if you have left comments on someone else’s blog, then you would notice that the comment usually has the image of the commenter associated with them; for example, as you can see here, some of the commenters actually have an image (that) automatically appears for every comment that they leave on other blogs, whereas for some other commenters, you would see a general-looking blank image here.

[evp width=”640″ height=”480″]tutorials/wpvideos/wp-gravatar.swf[/evp]

Now, these images are what they call “gravatars” or globally recognized avatars. And “avatar,” of course, is a popular term from forums and from games, which means a profile picture, if you wanna put it that way; but generally, by getting a gravatar, you standardize the image of you that appears across any blogs that you leave comments on.

To get a gravatar itself, you just need to go to Gravatar.com and right up here, click on “Sign Up.” And then you’ll be asked for your primary email address. Now, it’s important to remember that whenever you leave comments on other blogs, in order for your gravatar to show, you need to use the exact same email address every single time. However, another easier way to get a gravatar is actually to go to WordPress.com and click on Sign Up Now or you can click on the signup link above to get yourself a WordPress.com account. This is very useful because by creating a WordPress.com account, you’ll be able to get a free blog at WordPress.com, and you’ll also be able to get your WordPress API key, which you’ll probably need to use in your Akismet spam plugin and in other applications as well.

Since I already have a WordPress.com account, I’m going to log in to my account now, and I’m going to show you how to change your gravatar profile picture. Once you have logged in to your WordPress.com account, simply go to My Account and click on Edit Profile. And in the main profile page itself, you’ll be able to see your current gravatar; if you find that this section is blank, then you need to upload an image to create your gravatar. So I’m going to show you how to do this. Just click on Change Your Gravatar, and you’ll see there are a few options here, so you can either upload a new image from your computer – you can use your webcam to take a snapshot of yourself, or you can also specify a link to a picture that you already have on your own web server or anywhere else on the Internet; or you can also use a now-outdated WordPress.com avatar if you previously had one. But I think the easiest way for you to do this is to upload a new image from your computer, so I’m gonna click on that.

And then to find my image, I’m just gonna click on browse, and I’m gonna go to thumbnails. So, of course, it is highly recommended that you use the actual picture of yourself for your gravatar, but generally speaking, you can use any picture that you want. So for example, I’m gonna select this picture, and I’m gonna click on “Next.” And now, this is a very interesting screen that you will see. This screen basically allows you to select only portions of the image by cropping your image. So you can just put your mouse on any of the boxes here that appear on the edges of the selected area, and you can click and drag it to make sure that you take only the most interesting part of this picture. So if you want the whole picture, you just need to click and drag it some more to cover the actual selected area you want, and you’ll be able to see here a small preview and a larger preview of this image.

So when I’m 100% satisfied, I’m just gonna click on crop and finish. And then you’ll be asked to give a rating for your gravatar. Now, there are several ratings here, and the explanations for each of the ratings are as below, but generally speaking, if your image is not offensive or has any sexual elements, then you’ll probably just want to select Rated G. So if you have more than one WordPress.com account, then you’ll be prompted to select the account that you want to use this image for.

So from a first account, I’m going to leave the image as it is, and for my second WordPress.com account, I’m going to use this new image that I have just uploaded, and I am going to click on this “use for selected addresses.”

Okay? So it says, “Your new gravatar is being applied,” and you can just close this window. So that’s how you get your gravatar done.