Friday, August 05, 2011

Blogger Will Not Provide, To The Blog Owner, Email Addresses Of Commenters Or Readers

Occasionally, in Blogger Help Forum: How Do I?, we see a hopeful and naive query
How do I get the email addresses of people who comment, on my blog?
or alternately
How do I keep my email address secret, when I post comments, surf Blogger blogs, join a blog?

The promise to keep our email addresses secret is a part of the strategy employed by Blogger, in keeping our blogs secure, and under our control.


Blogger does not reveal our email addresses, casually, to anybody. Whether we wish to read a blog (anonymously, or as a designated reader), post comments, or post articles as an author, our email address is not revealed to the owner of any blog.

The only time an email address is used is so a blog owner can send a membership invitation - to be a blog author (in a team blog), or a designated reader (in a private blog). This does not happen unless you (the prospective blog author or reader) provide an email address to the blog owner, who enters it into the Permissions wizard. At the option of the prospective member, the email address used for the invitation may, or may not, be the same as the Blogger account used to join the blog.

If you, as the blog owner, wish to obtain email addresses of your blogs readers, you can add a FeedBurner Email Subscription as a blog accessory. People reading your blog are offered the option to subscribe to ("Follow") your blog by email. You can use the FeedBurner Subscriber Management wizard to obtain a list of your readers who, voluntarily, choose to subscribe by email.

In general, being concerned about anonymity issues is not a bad idea - but there's no specific identity exposure problem here - whether you wish to read a blog anonymously, join a blog as a designated reader, post comments, or join a blog as an author.

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1 comment:

Penny said...

So, subscribing to a blog's RSS Feed could potentially open a person up to spam, since via RSS your email address becomes available. I'm thinking that a person could set up a fake blog and use the feed to obtain email addresses. Although, I guess it would have to be a spectacular blog to obtain enough addresses to make the effort of deception worthwhile.