I stumbled upon a profile where the profile picture is, from my point of view, islamophobic.

After browsing the Terms of Service and searching meta for the search term "offensive" I'm still not quite sure if this should be flagged or not. On one hand people are saying you can post (nearly) whatever you like in your profile, on the other hand people are offended by using f-words or semi-naked women in profiles. In the later example people argued that it was inappropriate because it would be seen with every post the user would make. In this case, the offending profile-picture is not readable in the shrinked version next to a post.

I would tend to say it is inappropriate but I'd like to hear if the community shares my point of view.

  • 1
    As Tim Post mentioned in a comment under Barts answer, someone dealt already with this issue and the picture has been removed. Commented Nov 22, 2013 at 14:17
  • 2
    Related: User "Jesus Christ"
    – jscs
    Commented Nov 22, 2013 at 20:09

2 Answers 2


Don't hesitate to flag. Even if nothing ends up being done about it, at least some other people will have looked at it as well, and will have held it against the TOS and common sense. (Yes, I do accuse moderators of common sense here).

I'd say such an image should simply go. It pretty much violates "be nice". You can have your "political" beliefs, but I'm not sure SO/SE should be the platform for them.


If an average person would clearly take offense at an avatar or profile due to:

  • Graphic violence, nudity or sexual content
  • Targeting of any race, religion, gender or ethnic group
  • Exceptional cases where very poor taste would be likely to offend most people

... then you should flag it for moderator review. To be clear, we give people as much latitude as possible when it comes to their avatar and profile page. It's all about them, and we try to let them just be themselves.

When a profile page or avatar has, or is likely to create a disruption, we need to be made aware of it and investigate. We might not take action in some cases, but we really do need to be aware of it.

Flag any of their posts as 'other', let the moderators know, and if it's something that we need to look into the moderators can pass it to us quickly if they're uncertain, or just handle it themselves when they receive the flag.

  • 2
    How do we flag a profile that has no posts to flag? I stumbled on a profile image with nudity in it when I was searching for a user. I clicked on the profile to flag a post, but they don't have any. Commented Aug 7, 2018 at 16:22
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    Late response, @JoshWithee but I'll put it here for others who may need it - if the user has written any posts or comments, flag one of them for moderator attention and explain why you're flagging - "The username / avatar / profile content is offensive and should be removed" - and the mods will get to it.
    – Catija
    Commented May 26, 2021 at 17:48
  • @Catija And if no comments or other posts exist (which is what I think Josh meant)?
    – Joachim
    Commented May 27, 2021 at 9:16
  • 3
    @Joachim At that point, you'd need to use the contact link, select the other option, and provide a link to the profile along with some kind of description of what's off with it (so that they know, in the event the user changes it in the interim). There's currently no way to flag a profile that I know of, only a way to flag content associated with it. Additionally, if you see a moderator in chat, you can point it out there. Now, if the offensive avatar is IN chat, it can be kicked / etc.
    – user50049
    Commented May 27, 2021 at 12:28

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