The Flying Developer

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21 May 2013
Remember: Your Git Commit Email is Public

Here’s a fact I don’t think a lot of people know. Or rather they do know, but haven’t thought about:

Your git commit email is public

I spend a lot of my time on GitHub looking for talented developers to work with me at Shopify. In order to get in touch with them, I usually just click the email link on their profile.

When there isn’t an email listed, I simply use GitHub’s public API to get that person’s recent public activity, and search for an ‘@’ symbol. This yields a valid email in 100% of cases.

Here’s my profile page as an example:

Now here’s my recent public activity:

If you browse the JSON you’ll actually get two addresses of mine: My personal email ( and my work address (

I’m not concerned with who has my email address. I consider it to be public info anyway. But if you don’t want all and sundry reading yours, consider using a fake address in your git identity.

Update: vsbuffalo on Hacker News points out that GitHub has a help page to help you configure your commit email if you so desire:

Thanks for reading! If you like my writing, you may be interested in my book: Healthy Webhook Consumption with Rails

David at 10:51


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