I am an avid user of Stack Overflow and other Stack Exchange websites. I have noticed that some of the Gravatars used by members which were x-rated, get displayed. Why does the Stack Exchange community allow users to keep x-rated Gravatars? Why can't we filter the X-rated Gravatars for the members?

It has already been mentioned by ceejayoz in his answer to this question and my query is why can't we block the x-rated Gravatars here? There are many budding programmers under 18 visiting this site regularly.


1 Answer 1


Stack Exchange requests the PG version from Gravatar, not the X-rated version. So it is up to the users to correctly classify their gravatar images.

If you see an X-rated gravatar you can flag a post from that user for moderator attention, the images are expected to be safe for work here. There's some disagreement on what people find offensive or inappropriate, but in general any 18+ only content is not a good idea for a gravatar image.

  • 1
    Stupid question: can a moderator do anything about this other than kindly ask the user to change it?
    – Bart
    Nov 30, 2012 at 13:34
  • 3
    Given the context, that "18+" is disproportionately amusing, since the "sufficient" age varies from country to country (and even [sub-national political administrative/territorial unit] to [sub-national political administrative/territorial unit]).
    – Pops
    Nov 30, 2012 at 13:37
  • 1
    @Bart I don't remember the details, but a few months ago a mod removed some user's avatar (not sure if he had to kick the issue up to the dev team or not, though). EDIT: oh wait, here we go, and another one for good measure.
    – Pops
    Nov 30, 2012 at 13:38
  • @Bart It's a bit of a hack, but the gravatar is tied to the mail address, a moderator can change that one. Not an ideal solution, but possible. Nov 30, 2012 at 13:39
  • 5
    @MadScientist you're exactly right, as Kyle explains for the second link: "Since it was GMail, I added a '+youravatarisoffensive' before the @gmail.com. This won't affect notification, but it's technically a different address, so it has a different hash."
    – Pops
    Nov 30, 2012 at 13:43
  • why cant we have flag this avatar under user profile page,since it sounds indirect method to flag the user's post/activity,it may help moderators of se sites to maintain the site Nov 30, 2012 at 14:09
  • @vignesh flagging a post is totally sufficient.
    – Pekka
    Nov 30, 2012 at 14:34
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    @vignesh4303: I think you overestimate how many inappropriate avatars are used here. It's probably a very tiny minority. So why waste valuable developer time on such a feature? Besides that, you could always contact gravatar about the inappropriate avatar rating - I'm sure they'll remove such an avatar quickly. Nov 30, 2012 at 14:43

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