History of Gravatar
During the early days of digital forums, participants identified one another only through their usernames. While this entirely text-based interface worked for a while, users started having a hard time identifying each other as online communities grew. To facilitate ease of recognition, avatars or digital image representations were used.
One of the platforms that adopted the use of avatars was WordPress. As the traffic grew in WordPress comment sections, the need for an alternative solution to identify commenters and users arose. This solution was Gravatar.
What is Gravatar and what is it used for?
So, what is Gravatar? Gravatar is an acronym for Globally Recognized Avatar. It is a free online service built into WordPress that allows you to upload an image or avatar that will represent either you or your business on select platforms. The subject of the image doesn’t necessarily have to be you. It can be your company logo, a 2D or 3D character model, or any other visual image representation.
Currently, there are multiple web-based platforms with Gravatar support, including WordPress, Stack Overflow, Slack, and Github. These sites automatically use your avatar whenever you make a post or comment.
How to create a Gravatar
To create your own Gravatar, you need to follow a few steps. Since Gravatar is incorporated into WordPress, you should first sign up for a WordPress account if you don’t already have one. Then, you can go to the Gravatar website and select the Create your Gravatar button.
You will be prompted to sign in to your WordPress account. Do that and proceed by clicking the Continue button. Another prompt will appear asking you if you like to log in to Gravatar using your WordPress account. Select the Approve button.
You’ll then receive a confirmation email. To activate your Gravatar account, you need to open that email and make the confirmation. After that’s done, go back to the Gravatar site and sign in using your WordPress account.
Once your Gravatar account page opens, click the Add a new image button you’ll see at the bottom left side of the interface. You’ll be directed to a page that allows you to upload a new image from your computer. Alternatively, you can also use a past upload or an image from a URL. After uploading an image, you can crop, zoom, and rotate it to your liking. You’ll also have to select a maturity rating for it.
Lastly, navigate to your Gravatar dashboard’s sidebar menu, and select Websites. An Add a Website text box will appear. Just copy-paste your WordPress site’s URL and title into the text box, click Save Website, and that’s it! Your Gravatar is completely set up.
Now that you know the answer to “what is Gravatar?” and how to create one yourself, you can make your WordPress posts and comments more engaging and personalized.