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I’ve seen posts containing (possibly large) pictures heavily downvoted and (now that I'm a ♦-mod) flagged. (Most recent example)

I’d like to have this topic be a reference for what the general WB culture finds “appropriate” or “not our style”.

So, can those who have noticed this articulate or explain the criteria, for future reference?

(Meta-example — after all, this is a meta post — I did not insert a curious cat photo here to illustrate the mood or tone of the question.)

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    $\begingroup$ To be honest that post had a few more issues, beyond the images. $\endgroup$ – apaul Apr 15 '17 at 16:26
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    $\begingroup$ @apaul34208 ok, but images have come up multiple times. Perhaps there is a corallation between use of “disliked” images and other editorial style choices. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Apr 15 '17 at 16:28
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I think the general rule should be to avoid gratuitous or unnecessary images. Does the image really add something relevant or is it just noise?

If the image is just noise feel free to edit it out like any other noise.

We may be a little more relaxed than some of the more technical sites, but some of the lessons learned there will still work here.


In this specific case, the images don't really add anything. The link attached to the first one may be helpful, but the meme is just a meme. The second image was pure noise, no reason to keep it.

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  • $\begingroup$ While I like your comment it does not address "Religious vs Not Religious", the degree of dress of human forms, racial or sexual prejudice. As a guideline, you can also throw in the use of profanity in the questions, answers and comments. These are all tying into the exact same thing, like it or not it is censorship (DO NOT read me saying that is bad). So can you expand it to include those pieces or what ever you may or may not think is appropriate. $\endgroup$ – Enigma Maitreya Apr 15 '17 at 19:18
  • $\begingroup$ @EnigmaMaitreya I didn't really think that was the focus of this particular post, but I think those things are already covered by existing Stack Exchange policy $\endgroup$ – apaul Apr 15 '17 at 21:25
  • $\begingroup$ @EnigmaMaitreya meta.stackexchange.com/a/58035/217863 $\endgroup$ – apaul Apr 15 '17 at 21:38
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    $\begingroup$ This is the only thing in that link that I saw that you might be referencing - "if a user posts obscene images to the site". IS obscene defined? I have seen q/a's railed on because of human form robots with no close on. One can only imagine this is under the heading of "obscene". The point being all of this is subjective. That is what makes this particular issue so hard to get right. We hold out for this belief that we will all behave like rational adults. The reality is that is the exception, not the rule. The first line in your answer is great it deals with a part of the image issue .... $\endgroup$ – Enigma Maitreya Apr 15 '17 at 22:37
  • $\begingroup$ It does not really handle the obscene aspect of images and apparently relies on the reference in the link you supplied and that reference is a punt the ball, permission for the person to decide what is obscene. In regards to that same link I did not see any mention of Racist, Sexist etc. Yet I see Q/A's being VtC because those that can see them as such. When, in my opinion, they may not be my cup of tea, but they do not qualify being a VtC for that reason. $\endgroup$ – Enigma Maitreya Apr 15 '17 at 22:42
  • $\begingroup$ @EnigmaMaitreya Because these things tend to be subjective it's​ probably better to handle them case by case. If you see something that you personally find objectionable, flag it. If you're unsure raise a Meta question and let people chime in. $\endgroup$ – apaul Apr 16 '17 at 0:34
  • $\begingroup$ It was not my intent to get clarification on what I should do. I was asking if your answer could be expanded upon to give better guide lines than appear to be already in place on Obscene, Racism, Sexism etc. There was a World Building question about what if the need for women was obsoleted in terms of creating a baby. That raised a crap storm is one example. IF your not up for it just say so, I would understand .... :) $\endgroup$ – Enigma Maitreya Apr 16 '17 at 0:38
  • $\begingroup$ So how would you judge this one? At least he worked it in, but it's a joke added as a coda and not the main point. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Apr 21 '17 at 14:02
  • $\begingroup$ @JDługosz That's a judgement call, personally I wouldn't bother to remove it, but leaving a comment about not making a habit of it may be appropriate. $\endgroup$ – apaul Apr 21 '17 at 15:09
  • $\begingroup$ @JDługosz I just downsized the image a bit - the joke was funny but the image was taking over the whole screen. $\endgroup$ – Tim B Apr 21 '17 at 21:03
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Image that brings nothing and just takes space - remove it.

Image that is NSFW and without spoiler block - remove it. Or, if it was really needed, put a spoiler block on it.

Image that's clearly 18+ - remove it, its content probably could have been provided in text form anyway. Note that purely medical images aren't really 18+, but still can count as NSFW.

Image that's significantly bigger than this site will show - move it to imgur. If licence does not allow that - remove it, find a replacement etc. Slowing site down is harmful.

Copyrighted (non-CC) image copied to imgur - follow specific procedures, whatever they are. Comment asking for cc-compatibility wouldn't hurt.


Only images that should really be here are ones that illustrate the question or answer, make it clearer, easier to understand. But even then, everything that's on image should also be reflected in text - search engines are "blind". Not to mention that blind people are blind, too.

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    $\begingroup$ Moderators shouldn't be arbiters of whether copyright infringement has taken place or not. Stack Exchange the company has a content take-down process which can be used by copyright holders; for good reason, diamond moderators are not a part of that process. If you believe copyright infringement has taken place, contact the copyright holder and suggest that they follow the content take-down process. See How does deleting work? What can cause a post to be deleted, and what does that actually mean? What are the criteria for deletion? on Meta Stack Exchange. $\endgroup$ – a CVn Apr 21 '17 at 11:09
  • $\begingroup$ What about this one? $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Apr 21 '17 at 14:00
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    $\begingroup$ @JDługosz well, it is remotely relevant but I doubt if it is a good use of image in post. $\endgroup$ – Mołot Apr 21 '17 at 15:36
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    $\begingroup$ Also a simple a comment on the answer asking about the copyright status of images is something that has been done with success in the past. $\endgroup$ – Tim B Apr 21 '17 at 16:16

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