Update: New versions of BuddyPress (1.7+) only need to add the following snippet to their bp-custom.php file

    add_filter('bp_core_fetch_avatar_no_grav', '__return_true');

Gravatars are pretty darn great in general. But for certain communities there might be privacy reasons to disable them. BuddyPress let’s you do this, but it does not stop the calls being made to the Gravatar servers. This can sometimes lead to slower page loading times, and thus the people at BuddyPress.org came to the rescue! It took them a while to figure it out, but Scabadaska found a way to do it! Below is the complete code you need to put in functions.php or bp-custom.php. Enjoy!

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function bp_remove_gravatar ($image, $params, $item_id, $avatar_dir, $css_id, $html_width, $html_height, $avatar_folder_url, $avatar_folder_dir) {

    $default = get_stylesheet_directory_uri() .'/_inc/images/bp_default_avatar.jpg';

    if( $image && strpos( $image, "gravatar.com" ) ){ 

        return '<img src="' . $default . '" alt="avatar" class="avatar" ' . $html_width . $html_height . ' />';
    } else {
        return $image;

    }

}
add_filter('bp_core_fetch_avatar', 'bp_remove_gravatar', 1, 9 );

function remove_gravatar ($avatar, $id_or_email, $size, $default, $alt) {

    $default = get_stylesheet_directory_uri() .'/_inc/images/bp_default_avatar.jpg';
    return "<img alt='{$alt}' src='{$default}' class='avatar avatar-{$size} photo avatar-default' height='{$size}' width='{$size}' />";
}

add_filter('get_avatar', 'remove_gravatar', 1, 5);

function bp_remove_signup_gravatar ($image) {

    $default = get_stylesheet_directory_uri() .'/_inc/images/bp_default_avatar.jpg';

    if( $image && strpos( $image, "gravatar.com" ) ){ 

        return '<img src="' . $default . '" alt="avatar" class="avatar" width="150" height="150" />';
    } else {
        return $image;
    }

}
add_filter('bp_get_signup_avatar', 'bp_remove_signup_gravatar', 1, 1 );

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11 thoughts on “Completely disable the use of Gravatars on your BuddyPress site

Author gravatar

Very nice thanks ! Do you have also solution how to remove avatars only from activity stream ?

    Author gravatar

    Did you ever figure out how to remove the avatars from just the activity and comments etc?

      Author gravatar

      The Gravatar solution has some merit, but it adds coxitemply to the initial sign up, which is already fairly technical. This raises barriers to broad acceptance of your service.

Author gravatar

I’m looking at this and I’m trying to think of a way to include a check to see if the user has entered the gender profile field and have 3 mystery default images depending on what was selected M/F/ or none and show the corresponding mystery avatar as default. Any Ideas.

Author gravatar

Thanks. Been crazy for month, and testing 20 plugins to get rid of that gravatar call in Buddypress. Now it works as I wanna! Yap!!

Author gravatar

Someone can tell why the code after making avatars disappeared, although in the path of such a file exists. Sorry for my english

Author gravatar

I just thought I’d let people know that this code snippet still works as of Buddypress 2.0.2. Thank you for sharing.

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