This is an informational post for anyone searching for information.
Whats happening, at some point in your internet history you used that email address to sign up for either a WordPress.com account OR a Gravatar.com account. I know you probly don’t remember it, but thats ok. If you have a custom picture next to your posts normally then you at the very least definetly have a Gravatar account. Also, if you use Askimet on your blog (regardless of TYPE of blog), you have a Gravatar account, and infact it will have created a 2nd one just for Askimet if you used a different email. Fun right?
If you do NOT wish to use your WP.com account, and are willing to sacrifice the custom picture here’s the simplest way I’ve found to solve the problem.
First head to www.wordpress.com (yes, even if you swear you didn’t have a wp.com account, see, they’re owned by the same people, and the fact that you only agreed to a TOS for one service apparently doesn’t matter to them), if you have no idea what the password would be (and you probly don’t), use the password retrieval, type in the email and go to the email then send you to get into your account. THEN, change the email on the account (there are two places for emails, only one counts, yes it sucks) to something that you never use (I have an old hotmail account). Follow the process to change the email (this will require you to go to that email and click on a link from that email too), then log out. NOTE: if you get an error that says that email is already in use then WP.com created more than one account for you at some point, yes that was nice of them huh? Especially since its possible you didn’t actually sign up for it and agree to a TOS….(I had two accounts, one of them a brand new haven’t even confirmed the account via confirmation email yet new, on the email attached to THIS hosting package, which is thus brand new, and has NEVER been attached to wp.com EVER).
Then go to www.gravatar.com, log in if you know the log in, if you don’t use the password retrieval. Once you’re in the first thing you need to do is add another email address, add the email you want on the account, follow the process with the confirmation emails. Then make the new email your “primary email”, then delete the original email. Now log out.
Clear your browsers cookies.
Go back to Gravatar and click on the retrieve password option, yes I know you just did this, trust me….you are going to do it AGAIN. If you’re lucky it’ll tell you that there is no such account with that email, if you’re not lucky then you have more than one Gravatar account (I turned out to have 3, and I only signed up for one of them).
Note: if you use Askimet and you used that email when you signed up for the API key, you will have to SHUT DOWN Askimet before Gravatar will stop “correcting” your email address. You can redo Askiment with the “new” email if you really want it.
You WILL have to clear cookies again once you’ve got everything switched, shut down your browser while you’re at it just to be sure. If you’re still getting the log-in error then either there’s an account you missed or you didn’t clear cookies well enough.
Yes it sucks, and I’m pretty sure that the using a customer’s information to create a new account with their other services without informing the customer much less having the customer agree to a TOS is borderline illegal at best. Hopefully WP will figure that out before someone sues them….