Put Faces to Names in the Locally Grown Community

lettuceBeLG.jpgYou may have noticed a subtle change when viewing comments – a teeny little photo of the commentors by their comments (as of right now, just Griff and me). We know from our online and offline feedback that the LoGroNo community wants a better sense of who’s talking in our online dialogs, and so, our wunderkind ubergeek Sean Hayford O’Leary has set up our site to use a service called Gravatar (globally recognized avatar) to allow users to put a face to their name.

To get your own avatar, go to the Gravatar site and sign up. Be sure you use the same e-mail address that you use for your comments on this site (if you’ve used more than one, that’s fine; you can add other addresses later). After you’re in, upload an image of yourself — you’ll be able to crop it right on the Gravatar site. As soon as you’ve added your photo and the gears of the internet grind a little, your avatar will automagically appear on all your comments past and future.

Since the Gravatar service allows people to create multiple avatars, you can have fun and be creative. But in the same way that we require real names for our comments on our community blog, we’re also requiring real faces (of you, not your dog, cat, or Aunt Tillie) to go along with those names.

After you’ve got your Gravatar, show it off: comment after the jump!


  1. Tracy Davis said:

    This is how the “gravatar” appears by one’s comments.

    January 20, 2008
  2. … And this is how it looks if you haven’t yet added your avatar.

    January 20, 2008
  3. Griff Wigley said:

    Tracy, you ignorant cabbage head.

    January 20, 2008
  4. Rob Hardy said:

    <===If this works, that should be a picture of me taken in the Malvern Hills last May.

    January 20, 2008
  5. Rob Hardy said:

    Evidently not.

    January 20, 2008
  6. Rob, it may just take a while for your avatar to show. Check back later today or tomorrow.

    January 20, 2008
  7. Gilly Wigley said:

    This is neat.

    January 20, 2008
  8. Tracy Davis said:

    Okay, you young people (God, I feel old)… how about some non-distorted pics that show what you really look like? 🙂

    January 20, 2008
  9. It’s daunting to realize how difficult it is to find a photo you find at all presentable to the world…

    <== Here I am a few days into a backpacking trip in Glacier National Park with my son last summer.

    January 20, 2008
  10. John S. Thomas said:

    I’m in. Let’s see if it will show up.

    January 20, 2008
  11. Ahem… who would disagree that this is the real moi?

    January 20, 2008
  12. Guess it takes a while, but when it arrives, note the pointy ears and sharp teeth.

    January 20, 2008
  13. BruceWMorlan said:

    Testing 1,2,3 … my favorite small photo in shades with a hat seems to communicate more about me that this simple photo, but it also pretty much hides who am I. I presume the texts I post tell people about me, so I figure a simple photo is best. Sorry if this is too neolithic for the compulsively avant garde amongst us, but I figure form follows function.

    January 21, 2008
  14. OK, Bruce M., if you’re going to be snarky about photos of people in hats and sunglasses, I can do a straight mug shot instead ;-). (Although more people might recognize me in sunglasses and a hat or bike helmet.)

    January 21, 2008
  15. ohhh, its not there yet… 🙁

    January 21, 2008
  16. Robbie Wigley said:

    Okay…. I did it (I think) and I didn’t get any help either!!

    January 21, 2008
  17. Britt Ackerman said:

    Testing…testing…can you see me now?

    January 21, 2008
  18. Griff Wigley said:

    For those of you whose faceshot/image isn’t showing up yet, I’m wondering —

    Your email address THERE might not match with the email address you’re using HERE.

    One way to solve this might be to enter all your commonly used email addresses THERE and assign the same photo to all of them.

    January 21, 2008
  19. Griff, your thinking is correct. If they e-mails do not match, they won’t work — though sometimes is it just slow to go through. Also note that when you sign up on Gravatar, you must use all lower-case letters in your address. Even if you capitalize some letters here on LG, do it all lower-case there .

    If you do need to add more e-mail addresses, remember there’s no need to add multiple accounts, log in and follow the link to add an additional e-mail there.

    January 21, 2008
  20. Will Craig said:

    longtime lurker

    January 21, 2008
  21. Holly Cairns said:

    Hey, if your gravatar isn’t showing up, go back into gravatar.com and select the image you uploaded (so it goes with your e-mail). I didn’t select the image and it doesn’t show up. 🙂

    January 21, 2008
  22. But isn’t the whole point of the “inter net” to talk tough behind the cover of anonymity?

    January 21, 2008
  23. Tracy Davis said:

    Nathan (#24): NO! At least, that’s not the purpose here. We want to see if this technology can be used for good and not for evil. 🙂

    Will (#22): No fair! If/when you quit lurking, will we see your whole face?

    January 21, 2008
  24. Sorry, Tracy. I forgot the .

    Really, I am trying to keep it clean on your ‘blog.’


    January 21, 2008
  25. Rob Hardy said:

    <===Am I there yet?

    January 22, 2008
  26. Rob Hardy said:

    Okay, it’s been a couple of days, and I made sure my email was connected to my avatar. I’ve followed directions exactly. So, I give up. I will remain faceless.

    January 22, 2008
  27. Tracy Davis said:

    Rob, NO!! Don’t give up. We’ll get to the bottom of it. Would you mind trying adding your email address to Gravatar again – using only lowercase letters – and see if that makes any difference?

    (I almost hope it does… it would be such a relief to see that ANYONE cares about the use of capitalization in this medium – which seems to have a weird affinity for the e.e. cummings approach – even if it is just a stupid automated website.)

    January 22, 2008
  28. BruceWMorlan said:

    Where is the “manage subscriptions” link?

    January 22, 2008
  29. Tracy Davis said:

    HEY! You’re showing up now. Rather frightening, but still there. 🙂

    “Manage subscriptions” is right below the comment box – it’s just text, it’s not clear it’s actually a link until you mouse over it.

    January 22, 2008
  30. Griff Wigley said:

    Bruce, it’s under the comment box. It’s not an obvious link so you have to mouse over it to see it.

    BTW, you have used two Gmail email addresses in this thread. One Gravatar is working (#30), the other isn’t.

    January 22, 2008
  31. Griff Wigley said:

    Rob Hardy, your face has shown up!

    Nathan Kuhlman, the rest of your face has arrived!

    Will Craig, good to have you emerge from the lurker underworld! But can you bring the rest of your face with you? 😉

    Nick, Carol, and Britt, you’re still disembodied.

    January 22, 2008
  32. Nick Benson said:

    It’s working now.

    Griff, I don’t like how your avatar cuts off the little soul patch you’ve been working on.

    January 22, 2008
  33. Tracy Davis said:

    I see Nick. Nice parrot!

    January 22, 2008
  34. Nick Benson said:

    Thanks! Luckily I didn’t end up with any souvenirs from that endeavor, asides from the picture, of course.

    January 22, 2008
  35. Paul Zorn said:

    I thought I was going to get some gravitaS, but all I got was this comic book picture.

    January 23, 2008
  36. Scott Davis said:

    What a bunch of good lookin’ folk we have here!

    January 23, 2008
  37. Mike Bull said:

    and me… ?

    January 23, 2008
  38. Griff Wigley said:

    Those of you having trouble, make sure your photo is linked to your email address.

    Ross was having trouble so I logged into his Gravatar account and took these two screenshots, before and after. You MUST manually associate each email address with the photo.

    rc-grav1.png rc-grav2.png

    January 23, 2008
  39. Anthony Pierre said:

    hi lol

    January 23, 2008
  40. Griff Wigley said:

    It’s a freakin’ juggernaut, now. Let’s have more lurkers join the partaaaay.

    January 23, 2008
  41. John George said:

    There’s the old Bull of the Woods, or at least of the cabbage patch. This should get rid of everyone’s vermin!

    January 23, 2008
  42. Parrot shmarott, Nick! Here I am with a macaw the 4th of July in Bridge Square!

    January 25, 2008
  43. Gravatar check.

    Lurking is fun, but having a chance to express yourself is
    even better.

    January 25, 2008
  44. Okay, I think I’ve got it this time. Don’t laugh! 🙂

    January 25, 2008
  45. Tracy Davis said:

    This is great. Thanks to all of you who’ve taken the time to post a picture of yourself. It makes a subtle but definite difference to be able to see who’s talking; you’re not just disembodied voices anymore. It helps to reinforce the idea of community.

    We do, however, have a couple of wise guys. No surprise there, really. But in my original post I said that, in the same way we require one’s real name in order to participate in the discussions on LoGro, we’re also requiring one’s real face. I’m iffy on the partial-face photos, but I have to admit that Will C.’s pic and comment above made me laugh out loud so I left it alone. I understand that some people just aren’t about self-revelation.

    Brendon E. is, as usual, pushing the envelope – his gravatar shows his real face, but…. he’s in drag. Technically that’s not a violation of my original request, but it doesn’t help the overall goal, which is to enable people who see you on the street to say “hello” and greet you by name. Jerry B. must’ve gotten completely carried away, because his gravatar is the monkey.

    I’m not trying to squelch creativity or be heavy-handed, but the reason we enabled the gravatars is because it was a tool to help foster the real-person community feel we’re after. Will you two change yours, please?

    January 26, 2008
  46. Ahh, crap! So, Tracy, do you mean I have to dress in drag whenever I’m on the street?

    Does that mean you feel the need to facilitate communication between participants off-line? I put my real name on my posts, which abide by the accepted tone guidelines, what does it matter if people say “hello” to me on the street? Seems to me that it’s my choice with whom I engage in public.

    That feels a little heavy-handed to me.

    The way I see it, I could be a lettuce head icon or the femmed-out version of myself, which, aside for the luscious lashes and make-up, actually still looks a lot like me. You’re getting more than lettuce.

    To tell you the truth, many of the gravatars are too small or old (younger versions of themselves – I won’t name names) to help me recognize those people on the street anyway. I doubt I’d be able to peg some of those people (those I don’t already know) if they sat next to me at Hogan Bros. or GBM based on these tiny images.

    Not trying to be difficult, but I feel that maybe LoGroNo is over-reaching in the earnestness category on this point.

    Besides, the Bella me is so much cuter. I mean, look at that gorgeous red hair!

    So, yeah, this is simply a plea for lightheartedness on this little issue.

    Now, I’m off to watch one of your extremely talented progeny act in one of my silly plays.

    As always, much love to the three of you, from me and from the Bella inside me.

    January 26, 2008
  47. Jerry Bilek said:

    Are you suggesting I look like a monkey? I do share 98.5% of my DNA with chimps. and I am the ape in charge.

    Seriously, I loaded a bunch of pictures and thought they would cycle through at random. I guess you have to change them from time to time, so you will various pictures of me with and without monkeys.

    January 26, 2008
  48. Tracy Davis said:

    So, Brendon, let me get this straight. I asked, “Will you please change your photo to something more in keeping with what we’re hoping to do on this site?” (not unlike the way one might ask in another social setting, “Would you mind moving your chair?”) and your response is, “NO. Bugger orf.”

    Is that an accurate summation?

    January 26, 2008
  49. Some gravatar comments: why does Sean’s gravatar have no mouth and Griff’s no chin? Is this a statement of some sort about them? Lurking Will’s half-picture is the new style of Time Magazine for pictures of their columnists, alas. Bright’s picture is not bright on my computer screen. My visiting brother Brad from Idaho showed me how to lighten mine. As for Brendon as Bella, well….perhaps we should let Brendon be Brendon, unless he starts a trend and unless his wife is not pleased with the face he is presenting to the Internet world with his name, which she shares as his better half (definitely the better half in the case of Bella–Ann is much prettier).

    January 26, 2008
  50. You don’t want to see me in the light, Susan. Believe me. Dark is good.
    Just kidding, actually that picture was taken at my funeral.


    January 26, 2008
  51. Tracy,

    Nice attempt to rephrase my brilliant argument into an offensive bit of spittle. I thought their were tone requirements that you had to maintain? I guess if you put the words in someone else’s mouth, it’s okay?

    Where will this madness stop, Tracy?

    Will you be a Resemblance Police Officer?

    How about pictures that sort of look like the person? What’s the threshold? In the LoGroNo labs, will scientists be conducting double blind tests to make sure that 95% of randomly polled residents can accurately label a person after seeing their tiny picture on this site? Those failing to reach that measure will be asked to pull their picture.

    I’m not sure a new person to town would recognize Sean or Gilly from their images on this site, for instance.

    What if a very large man with lots of hair and a beard loses a ton of weight and shaves his head and face? When you bump into him on the street, and, after a few moments of staring, you are able to just barely remember who he is, would you ask that man to post a new gravatar to LoGroNo that facilitates the external (not on this site) communication between citizens? Something that looks more like the new him?

    What if someone has plastic surgery or gets disfigured in an accident or dyes their hair and gets several facial piercings?

    See what I mean about the Resemblance Police?

    Have you considered that pictures might actually discourage participation in the site, especially from new readers? Even though it’s not a requirement, people aren’t necessarily going to know that. They may hold off because they’re not in the picture club. Something to think about.

    What if someone makes a comment on this site, and some crazy person objects to it so much that they track that person down from the picture on this site and kills him or her? Do you get sued for helping to facilitate this heinous crime? (This was hyperbole for hyperbole’s sake.)

    So, Tracy, what I am saying – not what you are saying I’m saying – is will you move your chair and recognize when you are taking things far too seriously?

    I thought you were pretty good at recognizing when people were jerking your chain.

    Yeah, I’m half-serious in my objections, not because I think the Gravatar Project (patent pending) is bad in its motives, but rather because your humorless objections seem unnecessary, almost silly.

    I guess the only personality you want injected in this site is from the three of you? That actually is a big mistake in terms of facilitating communication and attracting visitors. It’s not like I was putting anyone down. A community is made up of individuals with very different personalities. Variety goes much further to encouraging traffic than meaningless strictures.

    So, what you are saying is a lettuce icon will be a better representation of me than a drag picture that really looks a lot like me? Doesn’t make any sense.

    There is another issue here that’s actually more serious than some of my tongue-in-cheek hypotheticals above: My gravatar image shows up on other sites as well. What gives you the authority to ask me to remove it? I don’t want to manage 5 e-mail accounts with 5 gravatars. LoGroNo has no claims on the gravatar images as they apply to other sites, right?


    So, how do I remove the oh-so-bitterly-offensive gravatar image from this site without removing it from other sites where I’ve left comments? You put the images online here using Gravatar which is in no way owned or controlled by LoGroNo, seems to me you have to take whatever images people have established in that program, or ban those individuals from your site, or create a proprietary, in-house image host for LoGroNo only.

    Tracy, I’m not telling you to “bugger orf”; if you want to spin it that way, fine. I’m telling you I don’t agree with the logic or the reach or the purported effectiveness of the gravatars. I thought this site was about discussion, not allegiance. I want “Bella” to stay on other sites.

    So, Tracy, will you move your chair, please? If not, then ban me.

    January 26, 2008
  52. Tracy Davis said:

    Brendan BrenDON, my objections are never humorless. Now who’s jerked whose chain? I’m loving this.

    January 26, 2008
  53. One more thought before I’m sent to digital Siberia for my crimes against humanity: Tracy, don’t hate me because I’m beautiful.

    January 26, 2008
  54. Ohhhh, and you spelled my name wrongly just to jerk me again…

    Ummm… maybe I should rephrase that…

    Alright, fine, you got me. I’ve heard you were an acid wit, but consider me well-jerked like Jamaican chicken or…

    Let’s leave it at Jamaican chicken.

    I knew there was a reason I loved you guys.

    Well, I like you guys… I mean there’s no way I’m French-kissing Ross and Griff again, no matter how much they pay me this time. You on the other hand… well, I’ve heard a few things from my good friend, Ed Settera…

    PS: I also fully recognize that I make for a very homely woman at best, which, since Bella does resemble Brendon in many ways, maybe doesn’t speak well of me in my “home gender”.

    January 26, 2008
  55. Tracy Davis said:

    I’ll correct the spelling. That was really below the belt. I’m sorry.

    January 26, 2008
  56. jessica paxotn said:

    BrenDON/aka Bella,
    I am forthwith your not-so-humble servant. I high-five your comments to the Nth degree!

    January 26, 2008
  57. Holly Cairns said:

    Oh, what is going on here? Wow.

    Brendon, I spelled your name wrong earlier, and sorry about that. I can’t spell for the life of me, but you shouldn’t have to suffer the consequences. And you look beautiful, by the way.

    January 26, 2008
  58. No big deal, Holly… Tracy spelled my name wrong on purpose only because I have rejected her amorous advances so many times…

    (Full Disclosure: Tracy won’t return my calls.)

    (Fuller Disclosure: Their not calls so much as me standing outside her house and hollering her name, plaintively. Perhaps I should hold a boom box above my head while doing so?)

    (Fullest Disclosure: Come to think of it, I’m not sure it’s actually Tracy’s house.)

    (Fullester Disclosure: I’m not even sure it’s a house really; more of a police station-type-thingy.)

    Jessica, I’m glad you high-five my comments, but could you clarify exactly what number the variable ‘N’ in “Nth degree” is representing?

    If it’s N= -3, then you are actually not high-fiving my comments, but rather high-1/125ing them, which would mean you support them less than one percent. On the other hand, if it’s like N=97 or something, then, well, you are high-reallyhugenumbering them. Which would be freakin’ awesome!

    January 26, 2008
  59. The gravatar I sent in is really a picture of my identical twin. Hehehe.

    Also, I agree with BE, but won’t admit it cuz he didn’t spell ‘they’re’ correctly, and no spell check would check that out, but I forgive Ann and she can forgive BE for me.

    January 27, 2008
  60. Yeah, Bright, I caught my misuse of their / there / they’re after I posted, but, alas, no editing enabled for li’l ol’ me. Sometimes you get going quickly and don’t catch things.

    I wasn’t able too sleep to much last night because of it. It was two much.

    January 27, 2008
  61. BE, or should I say, um, Brella? Well, it is good that you don’t catch things.
    Especially if they’re our too or moor.

    January 27, 2008
  62. Patrick Enders said:

    Is that really me? Someone must’ve posted one of my work pictures.

    February 1, 2008
  63. Felicity Enders said:

    Apparently we don’t use our camera often enough, Patrick.

    February 1, 2008
  64. Griff Wigley said:

    The Enders join the Gravatar gang!

    Britt Ackerman (#19) your test photo is working, however, that doesn’t really look like you. She’s cute, tho!

    Jessica, how about you next? I have some photos of you that I’d be happy to loan you for your Gravatar.

    February 3, 2008
  65. Jessica Paxton said:

    No doubt…Britt’s a major babe.
    In spite of my extreme hesitation, I was all set to create my Gravatar. But once I realized it wouldn’t meet Tracy’s guidelines, I kinda lost interest. Sorry.
    Of course, now I see this thread and realize the pressure’s on….do I maintain my individualism or join the pack???? What a quandary.
    Griff, as I recall, most the of the photos you have of me quality as blackmail material….

    February 4, 2008
  66. Griff Wigley said:

    I do have some of those, Jessica, but I’ll send you one that should pass muster.

    February 4, 2008
  67. Tracy Davis said:

    Geez….let this be a lesson for everyone: Try to do a little community-building (by requesting relatively accurate photos to go along with our real-name policy) and be forever demonized as the squelcher of individual expression.

    Oh, well, I guess I’ll take one for the team.

    February 4, 2008
  68. One thing I noticed about the Try Umph Er At I is that they are not very flexible.

    If someone wants to self express, just start a self express train thread.

    Be *and/both*, not *either/or* – it’s the 21 st century peopol, peopol!

    February 4, 2008
  69. Jessica Paxton said:

    Geez. I seem to have extreme proof-reading problems of late.

    No apologies necessary, Tracy. I think my need for “self-expression” is based primarily on insecurity — a partial or obscured or “artistically-rendered” image of myself is much preferable (to me) than the real thing.

    But, it seems now that I, too, will be joining the crew….watch out, LoGroNo, here I come (with sincere thanks to mister wigley, of course)…..

    February 4, 2008
  70. Jessica Paxton said:

    and, she takes the plunge.

    February 4, 2008
  71. Holy crap, Tracy, I was only trying to temporarily demonize you… not “forever”.

    I’m vindictive, not mean.

    February 4, 2008
  72. Tracy Davis said:

    Oh, good! I feel better now. Thanks, Bella. Now can we have a group hug and sing “Kumbaya”?

    February 4, 2008
  73. Sure, Tracy, as long as you and I don’t let anyone else in our group… but can we sing “Welcome to the Jungle” instead? I want to practice my Axl falsetto yelps.

    February 4, 2008
  74. Tracy Davis said:

    Just keep your hands on the table where I can see ’em, Etter. I don’t care what we sing.

    February 4, 2008
  75. Jessica Paxton said:

    Me thinks I did something incorrectly.

    I’ll bring my ukelele for the sing-a-long.

    Group hug, people!

    February 4, 2008
  76. I’m so so late with this gravatar business!
    Loving it!

    February 7, 2008
  77. Griff Wigley said:

    Jessica and Scott: it’s about time you got your faces on.

    Tracy, can you send Guido over to Britt’s office to convince him to change his Gravatar?

    February 8, 2008
  78. Do I want to be recognized on the street?

    February 9, 2008
  79. Griff Wigley said:

    Hey Linda, kudos! Tell the truth, tho: did Peter help you?

    February 9, 2008
  80. @Griff 9:29
    Tell the truth, tho: did Peter help you?

    No. He often does, but I didn’t need to ask him this time. On the other hand, the earlier comments were useful at places where I might have made the wrong guess.

    Speaking of help, any time you can find time to steer me through the bewildering maze of WordPress (or send another ministering angel), I’d be very appreciative. (Peter and Jesse are still bogged down with moving aftereffects.)

    And are there in-person get-togethers for locallygrown bloggers? I’d be glad to meet more of you, but my driving is quite limited, and in the winter, nonexistent.

    February 9, 2008
  81. Linda, there are some good public transportation busses in Northfield,
    and a good taxi company, too. They can get you to the library, restaurant
    or shopping. If you are a gardener, I can see if I can get you a guest space
    at the garden club’s luncheon next Tuesday. Email me at bright@beautywood.com and I will fill you in on the particulars. Also,
    I’ll have a cup of tea with you when the weather warms up a notch.

    February 10, 2008
  82. Oh, and let me say that I am much more charming and less confrontational in person. Really.

    February 10, 2008
  83. Griff Wigley said:

    Britt, I’ve been informed that you’re actually a ‘she’. My bad! Time to update your attorney profile?

    February 11, 2008
  84. Griff Wigley said:

    Linda, I keep hoping someone steps up to the plate to form a NWUG (Northfield WordPress Users Group) like I wrote about last fall in my blog post WordPress Q and A, tips, news. In the meantime, feel free to post questions there.

    February 11, 2008
  85. Anne Bretts said:

    Welcome back to town…there is a growing group of bloggers, commenters, lurkers and online junkies who get together from time to time. We aren’t sponsored by any particular blog or organization, and it’s all very informal. We just had a party Saturday and we’re looking at meeting for happy hour somewhere soon. It’s just a way for newcomers, oldtimers, returnees, commuters and others to get to know each other socially without committing to a particular activity or organization. If you — or anyone else — is interested, just drop me an e-mail and I’ll be sure to keep you up to speed as we figure things out. I can guarantee there will be no dues, no agendas, no volunteer requests, just conversation and adult beverages. In the meantime, if you need a ride anywhere, anytime, let me know and I’ll do my best to get you there and back. Some of us just weren’t meant to hibernate.
    Anne editoranne@yahoo.com

    February 11, 2008
  86. Britt Ackerman said:

    No worries, Griff. Did you think I’m a boy ’cause I look like I’m in drag in my pic like Brendon? Anyway, I’m a girl. 🙂 Hey, what would it cost us to have you remaster our website? Send me an email at britt.ackerman@gmail.com.

    February 11, 2008
  87. Julie Bixby said:

    Better late than never!
    (I would rather put in a picture of who I would like to look like!)

    February 11, 2008
  88. Julie Bixby said:

    The sparkle in my eye is because I was looking at my grandson Gavin!

    February 11, 2008
  89. I’ll post a real picture if you all agree to chip in for my legal defense fund. 🙂

    February 13, 2008
  90. Griff Wigley said:

    It’s a deal, Peter. Just make sure it’s a photo of you and not some Tom Cruise-lookalike.

    February 13, 2008

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