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Given an imgur image URL (e.g., https://i.stack.imgur.com/ZZRVq.png, I uploaded it just for the example), can one see which user uploaded it, and if so, how?

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No. I'm not sure if that information is stored at all, but it's certainly not available to the public. The IDs (in your case ZZRVq) are generated randomly and provide no indication about the upload time either. EXIF data and the like are also stripped, according to a quick test.

You could search for the URL on stackexchange.com: url:"https://i.stack.imgur.com/ZZRVq.png" and figure out in which posts it's used, and check the revision history to see who added it. But that does not guarantee it wasn't used (and uploaded) earlier by another user. With SEDE you could go through the entire post history, detecting now-deleted usages, but for larger sites such a query is likely to time out. And it still wouldn't detect usages in now-deleted posts.

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  • It also wouldn't detect images originally uploaded in chat.
    – PM 2Ring
    Apr 30 at 2:52

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