The first time I left a comment on another blog, it was pretty exciting to see my name “in print”. When I registered my avatar, that was exciting to see, too.

I don’t think I’m alone. I believe most bloggers love to see their names and/or avatars on other sites.

So, to feed the egotistical side of us bloggers, I’m showcasing a plugin for my “Free-n-Easy Friday Finds” (FEFF).

This one is for recent comments.

What I like about this plugin, it also includes the commenter’s avatar (see it in action in the left sidebar).

The name of the plugin is: “Get Recent Comments”. (This link is for the author’s site.)

To download the plugin, go to “WordPress.org” Plugin Directory.

It is widget supported or can be manually inserted by using code. Use the options page to configure yours to your liking.

To show avatars/gravatars, you’ll need to add “%gravatar” (without the quotations) to the “comments” option. For reference, here’s what the coding (on the comments option page) looks like for my site:

<li><a href=”%comment_link” title=”%post_title, %post_date”>%gravatar %comment_author : %comment_excerpt</a></li>

Krischan Jodies is the author of this plugin. ///clap, clap, clap\\\. Thank you Krischan.

Did you miss the lesson on avatars (also called gravatars)? Here’s the link: How To Get and/or Add A Gravatar To Your Post Comments

If you really want to work behind the scenes of your blog and add/try other great plugins, John Hoff @ eVenturebiz.com just posted a list of 50+ WordPress plugins he found (links included).

Thank you John for all of your hard work.

Don’t forget, leave a comment and watch your name and avatar show up under “Recent Comments”


Photo Credit: LollyKnit’s photostream

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  1. Hey thanks for the spotlight Barbara! That list I have on my blog is the result of many hours finding, stumbling onto, and hearing about from others a bunch of nifty little WordPress plugins.

    I think this is a great plugin for those blogs that allow showcasing of avatars. At one point I was thinking about putting a “Recent Comments” widget in my sidebar, however since I only have a two-column blog my sidebar real estate is limited.

    I’m planning to expand my footer though and may put this plugin there.

    Also, what’s this? Coding I see in your post? πŸ˜‰

    John Hoff – eVentureBizs last blog post..50+ WordPress Plugins & Hacks Candy Store

  2. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi John,

    You’re very welcome. I appreciate that you shared the list with your readers, and now I can link to you and share it with even more. I love how that works.

    I do realize those with two column themes do have limited real estate, so this plugin may not work for everyone.

    Hehe, the coding…The plugin supplies a “default” code. I just added the “%gravatar” part. You didn’t really think I would be able to figure that whole string out, did you? πŸ˜†

  3. DavinaNo Gravatar says:

    This interesting and definitely something I’ll have to look into. I have an avatar on my blog, but I’ve noticed that when I leave comments on other blogs, this avatar does not show up. Hmmmm.

  4. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Davina,

    Do you have your avatar registered with Gravatar.com? That may be the problem. The link I supplied to a previous post (How to Get and/or Add….) has a link to the Gravatar.com site.

    Let me know if you need any help.

  5. Cath LawsonNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks Barbara – I tried to install a get recent comments plugin before but I couldn’t seem to get it right. I will have another go with this one.

    Cath Lawsons last blog post..Immigrating to Canada or Australia – Pros and Cons

  6. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Catherine,

    This one was a easy install for me. It gives you quite a few options as well.

  7. Sunil PathakNo Gravatar says:

    This is really interesting πŸ™‚

    another great plugin is sezwho Which provides activity-stream of participants you can see this plugin in action on my blog

    Sunil Pathaks last blog post..Practical Guide For Successful Blog

  8. Al at 7PNo Gravatar says:

    @ Davina – what might be happening is that some blogs don’t use Gravatar for their avatars. MyBlogLog also has a similar service.

    An example is Aaron’s blog at Today is That Day. The avatars he uses for comments come from MyBlogLog rather than Gravatar.

    Al at 7Ps last blog post..The Hidden Water of Life

  9. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Sunil,

    Thank you for the link to sezwho. I’ll be by later to see it in action on your blog.

    Hi Al,

    Thanks for helping out Davina, and the MyBlogLog source.

  10. Al at 7PNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks Barbara – after reading your post, I went ahead and got it working on mine as well.

    Cool link to the 50+ plugins. Still reading thru it…

    Al at 7Ps last blog post..The Hidden Water of Life

  11. This is a great plugin Barbara and when I re-design my blog I’ll probably put it on. For the moment, I’m not making any changes while I try and decide what kind of look I’m after for SHE-POWER.

    Like Davina, my avatar doesn’t seem to be coming up lately and I’m not sure why. I just checked that the account was still valid and everything seems to be fine at that end, so who knows.

    I’ll see if it comes up today.


    Kelly@SHE-POWERs last blog post..It’s official: Australians are Fat and Badly Dressed

  12. Nope, it didn’t come up. I have no idea why.


    Kelly@SHE-POWERs last blog post..It’s official: Australians are Fat and Badly Dressed

  13. Scott McIntyreNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    I really like the idea of not being a “faceless icon” on the blogs I visit.

    I tried to sign up for the gravatar facility but I had problems- I’ve contacted their tech. support.

    PS Thank you very much, Linda Abbit and yourself, for the feedback on my first guest post. It means a great deal πŸ˜‰

  14. JayNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks for this! I’m going to check out the list of plug-ins and the ‘Sez who’ too. I’ve been looking for a few things for mine lately! πŸ™‚

  15. JenniferNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks for this information Barbara! You are so right in that people love to see their name and picture all over the place. There’s just something about us that loves it.

    I just added (well, ok my husband actually did it for me) the Comment Luv plugin and the subscribe to this post’s comments plugin this week. I’ll have to take a look at this “get recent comment” plugin with the gravatar. I like it alot! Thanks again for sharing it with us. Thanks for always sharing great tips with us to make our sites better!!!

    Jennifers last blog post..How to Stop Negative Thinking in its Tracks

  16. veredNo Gravatar says:

    Of course I enjoy it when my name and photo are published – I wouldn’t be blogging otherwise. πŸ™‚

    vereds last blog post..Google Search Terms: The Funny, The Sad, And The CREEPY

  17. LanceNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks Barbara – I’ll check these out! It’s an area I haven’t really delved too deeply into yet.

    Lances last blog post..Weeds…In Your Life

  18. I’ve been meaning to take care of my avatar. Now I know what to do. Thanks for that little extra push.

    Karl Staib – Your Work Happiness Matterss last blog post..Give It Your All, Not for Your Boss, But for Your Own Work Happiness

  19. MarelisaNo Gravatar says:

    I love reading about new plug-ins to improve my blog, thank you Barbara. I’m definitely going to check out John’s list. Yesterday I added the “All in One SEO” plug-in to my site, we’ll see if it helps bring in google traffic like it’s supposed to. And yes, I like seeing my name and picture on other blogs! πŸ™‚

    Marelisas last blog post..Create a Long List of Ways for You to Feel Good

  20. I tried this and it looked awful with my theme! I was so disappointed. Each line had a new bullet point, regardless of whether it was a new item or not. Yuck. I’ll definitely be adding this in if I change my theme.

  21. @ Barbara – You’re so funny. I don’t think you give yourself enough credit with the whole coding and all.

    @ Al at 7P – thanks for reading through my list and I’m glad you like them. I hope you find a few useful. Feel free to stumble, wink-wink.

    @ Davina, Scott & Kelly – The funny thing is, I had the opposite problem. My avatar would show up on everyone else’s blog but not mine. I finally found a gravatar plugin that seemed to work with my template: Filosofo’s WordPress Gravatar Plugin.

    Weird that you’re having issues with setting up your avatar. Are you sure you’re using the right email address that’s linked to it when commenting on other blogs (and yours). Also, be sure the size is correct – I think it’s 80×80. If you have an image you want to use and need it reduced to the proper size, let me know and I’ll do it for you.

    @ Marelisa – All in One SEO is good but I found a much better one. It’s #35 on my list called Platinum SEO. It automatically generates a description and keywords for your posts and pages, you never have to worry about it.

  22. Avani-MehtaNo Gravatar says:

    This looks like a great plugin. Should try it out. Thanks for sharing.

    Avani-Mehtas last blog post..The Art of NOT Making Decisions through Mental Chatter

  23. JenniferNo Gravatar says:

    I wanted to come back and say that you inspired me to activate my gravatars on my blog. Now everyone can see their beautiful selves. Thanks for the inspirition! Maybe I’ll get my hubby to help me with this plugin you recommended at some point….

    Jennifers last blog post..How to Stop Negative Thinking in its Tracks

  24. Linda AbbitNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    Thanks for these plug-in resources & directions.

    Since my blog is pretty new and I had someone create it for me, I’m terrified of mucking around with how it looks at all! How long did it take you before you were ready to dig “behind the scenes” and get into coding? Eeek! On the other hand I’d like to be in full control of my blog, and not have to rely on someone else to make changes as I want them.

    Have a great weekend!

  25. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Al,

    I checked out your site, caught up on your fabulous post, left a comment and WOW, there I was. πŸ™‚

    BTW: You’ll love John’s list of plugins.

    Hi Kelly,

    With Gravatar.com, I had the same problem when I was working on my test site. Then I realized I didn’t have one of my email addresses registered. When I added the address, my problem was solved.

    John might be able to help you as he had a problem with his too.

    Hi Scott,

    I look forward to seeing your avatar. Hopefully support gets your problem solved soon.

    You’re welcome. Your first guest post was a fabulous read. I’m looking forward to reading the whole series.

    Hi Jay,

    You’re welcome. The choices for plugins are never ending. Checking them all out will be a fun project.

    Hi Jennifer,

    You’re welcome.

    Isn’t it fun adding (or having things added) to make your blog more user friendly?

    Bloggers have so much to contend with (just with posting), if I find something I think may be helpful, I’m more than happy to share. We’re all in this together. πŸ™‚

    Hi Vered,

    Isn’t that a great part of blogging? We can be seen all over the world. WooHoo!

    Hi Lance,

    You’re welcome!

    For a new blogger, some of this can seem overwhelming. Just work at a pace you feel comfortable.

    Hi Karl,

    You’re welcome!

    I’ll be on the lookout for your avatar. It’s a fun process (either picking one out or making one).

    Hi Marelisa,

    You’re welcome!

    You’ll love John’s list. He has a plugin he claims is better than the All in one SEO. I’m going to check it out this weekend.

    Hi Sara,

    I just looked at your theme, and see how that could happen. You could probably correct that by adjusting the coding, but I’m not the person to ask about that.

    Hi John,

    Good to see you back.

    As you know, I dabble in coding, but it takes a lot of experimentation before I get it right. I would prefer to copy and paste. Hehe πŸ˜†

    Stumble? Why didn’t I think of that? I’ll be over as soon as I finish answering my comments and Stumble that list. That’s something everyone should know about.

    Hi Avani,

    You’re welcome! I’ll be watching your blog to see if you activate it. Remember, if you need help, just come back here and ask. πŸ™‚

    Hi Jennifer,

    Thanks for coming back and letting us know we can see ourselves when we comment. Yipee!!!!

    Hi Linda,

    You’re welcome!

    I hear you! I didn’t mess with coding right away, but then I got brave. I made many mistakes like crashing my blogs and collapsing my sidebars. It was a great learning experience. Fortunately I was doing it when my readership was very low.

    Now I have another blog set up which is my learning/test site. I can experiment to my hearts content, and no one is the wiser

    Have a great weekend, too!

    You’re we

  26. I’m a big proponent of avatars. Mine gets a little blurry when the avatar box is larger than with my blog – not sure why.

    Either way, avatars are the way to go! If you have the option to have one, why not?

    And, I really like when blogs allow them. I think it makes the commenting section more fun.

    Bamboo Forests last blog post..Be Embarrassed about Nothing

  27. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Bamboo,

    Like you, I like the avatars in the comment section.

    Like when I see yours (on my site or others), I say, “Oh, Bamboo is here, what is he saying? ” πŸ™‚

  28. NaturalNo Gravatar says:

    i’ve been seeing that plug-in a lot lately. nice find, especially with the avatars. we all love to see our mini-mes.

    Naturals last blog post..Brain Damaged

  29. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Natural,

    Those mini “mes” are cute, hey?

  30. hyrcanNo Gravatar says:

    The personal touches visitors can leave on blogs and websites definitely builds community, and a sense of belonging.

    It always feels good to not just be one of the faceless masses.

    The theme I’m working on will include touches like this. πŸ™‚

    @Sara at On Simplicity: a simple way around the bullets is to add a little CSS. You can restrict it to just that block on the right, but it will require you to know what the ID is for that block. For example, your Top Commentators block’s ID is “top-commentators”. Knowing this will give you the chance to do something like this in the WordPress Edit CSS screen (using top-commentators as an example):

    #top-commentators ul {
    background-image: none;
    background-color: #F7FBE5;

    This should remove the image used to produce the “bullet” effect, but still maintain the pale background color. If it doesn’t adding a !important before the semi-colon should do the trick.

    hmm… time to go enjoy the weekend… πŸ˜€

    hyrcans last blog post..What makes something racist?

  31. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Hyrcan,

    I totally agree. When we allow our fellow bloggers to have a place on our blog, they often begin to feel “at home”.

    Enjoy your weekend! See you again on Monday. πŸ™‚

  32. Hey thanks for the stumble, Barbara.

    @ Bamboo – I’m sure the problem with the fuzzy picture is the original image size is wrong. Do you have the original image you can give me? I’ll see if I can resize it for you so it’ll work better.

    John Hoff – eVentureBizs last blog post..50+ WordPress Plugins & Hacks Candy Store

  33. Dr. CasonNo Gravatar says:

    Oh I like this! I’m going to tweek my blog a little bit before I go to Hawaii. John sent me a CSS cheat sheet so that helps a lot!

    And BTW thank you for the tip regarding feedburner. I did it and it helped. I’ll see if i get more subscribers that way!

    Dr. Casons last blog post..Do Self Help Books or Blogs Really Help?

  34. Thanks! Will check out setting up an avatar. I really appreciate articles like this because it saves me the potential frustrations associated with searching for the information. And I’m with Vered. Do I like to see my name ‘in lights’? Oh ya!!!!

    Urban Panthers last blog post..Why men don’t react

  35. Thanks! I really need to keep myself updated with the plugins. Hoping to find some time in the next few days!


    Evelyn Lim | Attraction Mind Maps last blog post..Draw Inspiration From Never-Give-Up Success Stories

  36. @ Urban Panther – “Potential frustrations” oh yeah, I like that comment and relate well πŸ˜‰

    John Hoff – eVentureBizs last blog post..50+ WordPress Plugins & Hacks Candy Store

  37. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi John,

    You’re welcome. Hope it brought some attention to your great blog post. The list of plugins is awesome.

    Hi Dr. Cason,

    This is a pretty neat plugin, hey?

    I hope you pick up more subscribers via email. Some prefer that method of receiving updates, so we need to offer it as an option.

    Hi Urban Panther,

    I know all about searching for stuff. Sometimes it gets so frustrating.

    I’ll be looking forward to see what your avatar will be.

    Hi Evelyn,

    I like doing this “assignment” on Fridays so everyone can test them on their blogs over the weekend. (Haha – like we don’t have anything better, or more fun to do)

  38. Ian DennyNo Gravatar says:

    Another one for my things to do list! Currently in the throes of a re-design so when I get to the end, I’ll have to catch up on your Friday articles!

    Thanks for amazing consistency!

  39. chrisNo Gravatar says:

    The best thing about an avatar is that it puts a friendly face behind the words. And most of the times, I tend to click on the comments with avatars.

    chriss last blog post..My Achilles Heel

  40. Thank you Barbara. I love your tips. I discovered your site recently I am still going through your archives so I am sure I will find more useful tips.

    For someone like me who has just started a blog and struggles with the technical side of blogging you certainly provide some very useful information.

  41. @ chris – Me too, however I went with a different approach with my avatar. Instead of my face, I chose to use an avatar that is representative of my website. Not sure if it works for me or not – but I like it.

    @ Leanne – This is definitely a great place to learn about blogging and there’s lots of information here, but that’s not all you get with Barbara’s blog. The nice thing here is her community all helps each other.

    John Hoff – eVentureBizs last blog post..50+ WordPress Plugins & Hacks Candy Store

  42. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Ian,

    You’re welcome.

    You know where to find me when you get caught up. πŸ™‚

    Hi Chris,

    Avatars do make a little bit of a difference, don’t they?

    Hi Leanne,

    Welcome to the BWAB community!

    Thank you for your kind words. Please feel free to dig through the archives. If you ever have a question, feel free to ask.

    Hi again John,

    Yes, we do all try to help each other, don’t we? I really appreciate how you always show up when someone has a question I don’t know the answer to. πŸ™‚

  43. Scott McIntyreNo Gravatar says:


    I’ve tried to set up a Gravatar, but when I time in a nickname, it says “only lowercase letters and numbers can be used”.

    Yet, I’ve seen Gravatar names with capitals e.g. on here and on zenhabits.

    Could anyone please help tell me how I set up a Gravatar nickname with capitals?

    Thank you. πŸ™‚

  44. Hello Scott. Did you go to gravatar.com and create an account? I don’t recall being able to enter text, just an image.

    I’m not a pro myself at graphics, however I know a little. If you like, you can email me your image and tell me what text it is you’re wanting to put on the image (and where) and I’ll see what I can do.

    My email is blog (at) eventurebiz.com

    Also, can you give me an example image of how you want your text to look (like from zenhabits)?

    John Hoff – eVentureBizs last blog post..A Glimmer Of Hope For Those With Bad Credit

  45. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Scott,

    I believe what that means is for your nickname (for login purposes only, to gravatar.com) you need to use lowercase letters. That does not affect your gravatar.

    Let me know if this helps, and if what John said helps too.

  46. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi John,

    Thank you so much for being so helpful to your fellow BWAB community members. It’s always a joy to see someone stepping up to volunteer their expertise.

    That’s what I love about blogging communities. πŸ™‚

  47. See now that’s a cool plugin. I’ll admit, it is pretty neat when you see your name pop up on a site when you’ve recently commented.

    Being a typepad user I’m faced with a challenge… I can’t find a plugin that would allow me to show recent comments and include the commentators avatar. Am I missing something or does wordpress simply rock?

    Ricardo Buenos last blog post..Be Consistently Interesting

  48. […] lieu of my Free-N-Easy Friday Find (FEFF), I’ve created an “Open Mic” post. The comment section will be open to any […]