I mean, not for demonstrating the fate of downvoters, but because it's related to the question.

  • Does this contradict any rules in the site?
  • If not, what criteria can justify it?
  • $\begingroup$ We have some questions that deal with pretty brutal stuff, e.g. this and this. But they normally try to avoid pictures as this site should be safe for work and there is no age restriction. I would recommend not to put gore pictures into questions. Is it really necessary for your question to use the picture? Is your question meaningless without the picture? Can you find a sketch that illustrates the idea without the gore? $\endgroup$
    – Secespitus
    Mar 11, 2017 at 15:29
  • $\begingroup$ @Secespitus My specific problem was, that while making a question about robots with red stuff that clearly resembles blood and is hard to distinguish. And I wanted to include that why I want this to my story and at what levels by using this gif $\endgroup$ Mar 11, 2017 at 15:34
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ There is always the spoiler markup to mark something like this. With an appropriate warning this might be sufficient. I would recommend posting your question in the Sandbox to get feedback on the style There you can also write that you are especially unsure about the use of the gif. I doubt that it is really necessary to include this gif, your text should be sufficient. But that is, of course, your decision. $\endgroup$
    – Secespitus
    Mar 11, 2017 at 15:42
  • $\begingroup$ Ah the spoiler markup is a great idea and you can probably prefix it with "Unsuitable for people under the age of N or that is apposed to X or are Work." That alone probably gets a lot of views. Being serious, it does meet @Secespitus valid point and is a 1 size fits all compromise. $\endgroup$ Mar 11, 2017 at 17:31

1 Answer 1


The optimal Stack Exchange question is like a dolphin - streamlined, quick, and with a predilection for eating fish aesthetically pleasing. Basically, anything unnecessary should be removed. I've learned the hard way that the number of people who read the entirety of a post is inversely proportional to how long the post is1. Therefore, for your sake and theirs, the ideal thing to do is to write a question with all the necessary details, caveats, and constraints, and then edit down anything totally unnecessary. This may include unnecessary

  • Equations
  • Quotes
  • Certain bits of background information
  • Images

It's said that a picture is worth a thousand words. In reality, it might be worth a thousand characters - at least, it may take up as much space as 1,000 characters. That's a lot of space, and can be distracting. My rule of thumb: Don't add an image to your post unless you really need it. 75% of the time, that rule alone can make the decision for you.

Let's say you really think that the image is necessary. As far as I know, there is no overarching Stack Exchange policy on violent images; there's certainly nothing in the content policy, although that does briefly mention sexual content. That said, as Grace Note has pointed out, (sexually) explicit material could lead to the network getting blocked, and the same logic could apply to violent images. Besides alienating outside users, you also risk offending Worldbuilding users who happen to be passing by. Remember, the youngest (legal) users are thirteen years old, and while that doesn't mean we have to keep everything PG-13, it's always best to consider that anyone could be dropping by.

Essentially, adding images like this will rarely make the question better, and will likely alienate people who might otherwise read and appreciate the question. In almost all cases, I'd recommend leaving it out. But if you really think the image is needed, consider using spoiler formatting:

>! Image

. . . or simply just adding a formatted link to the image:

[Here's a related image (May be not safe for work)](Link to image)

1 Yes, my latest answer is over 13,000 characters long. So maybe there's a bit of hypocrisy here.


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