I have noticed that some users are getting a bluish Gravatar which looks like the following:


Bluish Gravatar-1

Clara Diaz Sanchez

Bluish Gravatar-2


Bluish Gravatar-3

Is this intentional or just a bug?

  • 2
    You probably will need to specify what device your using the access those gravatars. On the web, Physics.SE doesn't look like that. – Rebecca J. Stones Jan 28 at 6:19
  • 1
    Also, share a link to specific users, so others can verify/falsify – Luuklag Jan 28 at 6:24
  • @Rebbecca I am using mobile site – Johan Liebert Jan 28 at 6:45
  • Ah, I can reproduce... via the browser, not the app. – Rebecca J. Stones Jan 28 at 7:18
  • It's blank due to missing Google profile picture, already reported in the past. – Shadow Wizard is Ear For You Jan 28 at 7:46

When I visit those user profiles on the main site, their profile image returns a 404.

The ones I checked were all hosted by Google on the lh[3|5|6].googleusercontent.com domain. It could be that there is a temporary outage or that the user decided to remove that image / deleted their Google account or Google stopped offering the service.

This is a 3rd-party problem and not something Stack Exchange, or you for that matter, can fix.

If this is permanent the impacted users need to take action, for example by uploading a new profile image, preferable into the imgur instance of Stack Exchange.

  • Would it be an issue if they didn't take action and just left the profile image blank? – Dan K Jan 28 at 12:50
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    @DanK No, I don't think that is an issue. At best it is confusing. You could argue that maybe SE should fallback to a generated avatar but I think it is hard to determine if the 404 is temporary or permanent. – rene Jan 28 at 12:58
  • @rene also hard (and expensive) to catch broken image in server side, currently SE just throw what Google gives as the profile picture without checking it. Client side fallback is possible (using onerror JS event) but it's hacky and not elegant. All in all, IMHO better leave it as it is now. – Shadow Wizard is Ear For You Jan 29 at 6:53

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