This question was asked here: How to handle potentially NSFW yet valid images

I'm looking to provide a formalised protocol that may be added to the
FAQ for Stack Exchange sites.

I've asked this question on Pets.SE:

How to care for a severe wound on horses leg

Within it are very graphic photos of an injury. The photos are hidden - so that they can only be seen with a hover.

I've included large warnings using headings, but I'm fearful people may hover accidentally over these images.

The images are relevant, as the answer will show the story of the recovery (I haven't posted the answer at the writing of this, as I want to post many images in the answer). The question and answer will also be highly useful.

I'm looking for a canonical answer, so we can advise people what's the best way to proceed with such cases.

Is it ok to format such posts as I have or should these types of images be linked externally, so there's no potential to hover?

  • 1
    An external link is probably not a solution since the link could be broken. Maybe do one of those "spoilers" where it just says that the image is graphic (kind of like what you did but the message would be on the spoiler. – Anthony Pham Sep 2 '17 at 1:33
  • @AnthonyPham what do mean? The message would be on the spoiler? – Yvette Colomb Sep 2 '17 at 3:31
  • @JourneymanGeek you mean >! ? – Yvette Colomb Sep 2 '17 at 5:06
  • 1
    Re: the linked question on Pet.SE, I appreciate the effort to warn readers about potentially graphic image, but I'd refrain from putting too much warning & formatting. IMHO, it doesn't look good to my eyes. Just a bold (definitely not header, because they're not headers!) is enough for me, or if you want, just preface the post with "Warning: the post contains potentially graphic image hidden behind the spoiler.". – Meta Andrew T. Sep 2 '17 at 7:07
  • @Elias yes my terror of someone accidentally hovering over it may have influenced the warnings. I'm worried people may not realise that if they hover near it, it will display – Yvette Colomb Sep 2 '17 at 9:54

Just upload the images to Imgur as usual, but replace the embedded image with a plain link and mark the link with a warning about the type of image behind it.

This means that users will have to follow the link to view the image, but that is a minor inconvenience. I would not rely on spoiler markup to hide images, that is not the original purpose of the spoiler markup and I wouldn't trust this to work in all circumstances. It's also pretty easy to accidentally hover over the spoiler area.

The warnings also don't need to be excessively large and verbose. A simple warning, maybe in bold if you want to be extra careful, should be sufficient.

  • Yep that is what I was wondering - it may be the better option - with a description and brief warning. I've only made huge warnings, as I'm terrified people will accidentally hover. There is a picture of the leg cut open showing the bone. I don't want people to stumble upon it. – Yvette Colomb Sep 2 '17 at 10:16
  • This is my preference - it ensures there's no accidental pic reveals and disrupts the flow of the post less, with blank spaces – Yvette Colomb Sep 2 '17 at 10:27

I'd recommend putting it behind a spoiler tag, and make it explicit in the earlier part of the question

There's an image of a dog under the spoiler, as an example of an image behind a spoiler.

Of course, there's a few other things that need to be met IMO - that it be relevant to the question (but of course!), is reasonable in context and so on.

The goals would be both to create a better question, and one that has any potentially disturbing bits optional, so what you've done is fine.

I'd note though, the situations where this is necessary would be somewhat uncommon, so not entirely sold on it being formalized. Its certainly a good common sense rule tho.

Then of course, a spoiler makes it harder to accidentally go "oh goodness, that's terrible" by accident.

enter image description here

  • 2
    The image behind the spoiler seems very graphic, especially the sliced body behind the dog... – Meta Andrew T. Sep 2 '17 at 7:04
  • That's why it is behind a spoiler. Terrible isn't it? And that foot. – Journeyman Geek Sep 2 '17 at 7:08
  • @Elias it's fruit crime. – Yvette Colomb Sep 2 '17 at 10:27

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