Diaspora Discourse Privacy Concerns [RESOLVED]

When I opened this Discourse account, my profile already contained a photograph of myself (based on my email address, apparently). It was not a photo that I chose for the profile, it was already there the first time I visited the profile page., How was this image accessed without my knowledge or permission. I find this activity invasive. Has my hard drive been accessed without my knowledge? How has the Diaspora site accessed this image?


The initial profile picture was fetched from gravatar.com, where you uploaded the image and assigned it with the same email address you used to sign up on Discourse. The whole point of Gravatar is to allow sites to easily grab a profile picture for new users, so if you have an issue with that, delete your Gravatar account or unassign your email address.

The picture you’re using now has been uploaded on 11/Oct/2019:11:22:29 +0000 by the same IP address that created the account and wrote this post.

Dennis Schubert, thanks for your response.

Until now I was unaware of the gravatar.com website. I have not to my knowledge created a gravatar account. How has my email address been assigned to that website? I have never had a profile image appear on a website before without my knowledge.

Of course I am aware that the image now showing is a different one to the image originally applied & that I uploaded it myself.

It seems that a Gravatar account is only accessible through login to a Wordpress account, which, I have just found out, I have never given Gravatar permission to access. The Wordpress account I have was created only so that I am able to comment on friends’ blog posts. I have no images uploaded to the email address Diaspora indicated the image was connected to.

Having accessed my Wordpress account, although I have no profile image uploaded there (I may have done in the past), there was the 3rd party Gravatar app connected to the account (which I do not remember connecting. Either it is part of Wordpress t&c, or I have forgotten). I have now disconnected the Gravatar app. It is odd that I have never had this occur before, or perhaps that it is just a process used by very few websites.

Thanks for your assistance in aiding me to resolve this misunderstanding.