I'm aware similar issues have already been reported, but I'm able to consistently reproduce another strange aspect of the bug on step 5:

  1. Edit my profile on any non-beta Stack Exchange site
  2. Click Save and copy changes to all public communities
    • My profile on all other sites, including the meta site of the main profile that was edited, now use the Identicon image
  3. Navigate to my main profile on another site, click Change picture, and select "Gravatar"
  4. Click Save changes just for this community
    • My profile on the respective meta site still uses the Identicon image
  5. Navigate to the meta site, and simply click Ask Question
    • My profile on the meta site now uses the Gravatar image?!

In the meantime, I've opted to upload my profile image manually rather than going through gravatar. That appears to apply the change to all my networks without issues, as far as I can tell.

I thought that reporting these bizarre reproducible steps might help narrow down the cause of the bug.

  • 1
    This is a reoccurring nuisance: meta.stackexchange.com/q/289854/282094 and meta.stackexchange.com/q/283643/282094 (and related links in the right column).
    – Rob
    Apr 12, 2020 at 2:37
  • @Rob thanks I hadn't seen those. I guess my search for duplicates wasn't thorough enough. Those explanations are a lot more satisfying than the posts I've found. I can't help but wonder why navigating to "Ask Question" forces Gravatar's faulty cached image to clear though. Apr 12, 2020 at 3:16
  • 1
    Patrick: ... why navigating to "Ask Question" forces Gravatar's faulty cached .... Because the per-site-meta updates slower than the parent site: meta.stackexchange.com/q/290081/282094 meta.stackexchange.com/a/107584/282094 meta.stackexchange.com/a/304048/282094 meta.stackexchange.com/q/345350/282094 etc.
    – Rob
    Apr 12, 2020 at 3:39
  • I'm not sure what reputation has to do with image caching, but okay Apr 12, 2020 at 4:48
  • Patrick, the last one complains that reputation wasn't updated on the child meta for over a year; it's an extreme case of the per-site-meta being behind the main site. The whole point of 3rd party hosted images (Gravatar, Identicon, Google, etc.) is that it's not "cached", it's live - you change it at the 3rd party's site and it is served live throughout the Internet (with them collecting the IP addresses of everyone viewing the image, and the webpage that they viewed). "Image caching" isn't helpful (desirable) for their business model, they don't need to serve the correct image.
    – Rob
    Apr 12, 2020 at 5:16
  • Are you saying the explanations in the first two posts you sent are incorrect then? They point at caching as the cause of the issue, yet you're saying here (if I'm understanding correctly) that you don't think gravatar is caching the images, because that goes against their business model. Apr 12, 2020 at 5:34
  • You brought up the term image caching to our conversation. The first link doesn't mention cache, the second link speculates about it in a guess, the 3rd has a comment using the term incorrectly, [continued] ...
    – Rob
    Apr 12, 2020 at 6:26
  • [continued] ... and the forth isn't correct English - so, no I'm not altering what I wrote above.
    – Rob
    Apr 12, 2020 at 6:26


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