Image display, anyone? April 18, 2001 10:40 AM   Subscribe

Would anyone like to weigh in on the use of images in MeFi posts? In the past, some have expressed a desire to keep things lean & mean, text only. When images are used, should they reside in the poster's own files, or is it ok to grab an image from someone else's site? I don't mean to single aaron out here, and I'm sure that webmaster is happy to get the publicity from the thread. I see how someone could get pretty pissed, though, under certain circumstances.

posted by gimli to Etiquette/Policy at 10:40 AM (16 comments total)

My opinion? Thus far, I have seen no problem with images in threads. Theoretically, one could arise if enough people decided to do it frequently. As for the second issue, it seems best to use one's own files. Again, I don't think aaron hurt anyone (small file from huge site, not somebody's masterpiece), but in the case of someone's "labor of love" I imagine feathers could be easily ruffled by directly linking to an uncredited image.
posted by gimli at 11:06 AM on April 18, 2001

I don't care about linking images on other servers, but like you said, it's only good when done very sparingly.

When I setup the site two years ago now, the first beta test comments were "dude! you've got to limit html in comments."

Two years later, and people are still being nice about it. It still shocks me (I have the code to lock out anything besides italics, bold, or link tags, but I've never felt the need to add it).
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:46 PM on April 18, 2001

That's awesome, Matt. Really makes me have some faith that the internet population has some maturity and restraint. Go to some Yahoo discussion rooms if you want to have that faith obliterated...
posted by fooljay at 2:19 PM on April 18, 2001

Matt, I want to add a 1.2Mb animated gif as my signature. Can you implement signature files so I can do it?
posted by dhartung at 2:44 PM on April 18, 2001

I'll get right on it.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 3:11 PM on April 18, 2001

1.2MB animated gif! ... holey crappy connection batman! ...

that would take forever for my 56k butt to download.
hehe... just saying that's all. :)
posted by a11an at 6:49 PM on April 18, 2001

So, Matt, what you're saying is that all this time I could've embedded Donna Summer midi files into my posts? Dang! Talk about your missed opportunities.
posted by lia at 11:10 PM on April 18, 2001

I know there's that rule about self-linking, so I was thinking of embedding my webpage directly into all of my posts.
posted by Doug at 11:20 PM on April 18, 2001

I've had an image in my profile for awhile. Glad to know I'm not breaking any rules.
posted by norm at 8:43 AM on April 19, 2001

It's broken, Norm. ("he's dead, Jim")
posted by rodii at 9:23 AM on April 19, 2001

Damn. I saw that too and had a buddy check it out with IE. It works for him, but not in my Netscrape. ARRRGGHH.

posted by norm at 10:51 AM on April 19, 2001

And now, for no good reason at all, it's working again for me.

posted by norm at 10:57 AM on April 19, 2001

Maybe the reason few people have abused the open HTML posting here is that few people really know HTML anymore, and the ones that do are aware enough of common netiquette to avoid abusing the privilege here.

It's also possible that since so many other sites are restricted, people just don't think of it as much of an option anymore.

Or maybe it's just more evidence that Matt has managed to build an amazingly impressive community that is able to keep itself in check to a large extent. Good work, Matt.
posted by daveadams at 11:42 AM on April 19, 2001

I'm pretty much a novice, so is it considered bad netiquette to just link to someone's image file? I linked directly to a wav in the Hawking thread the other day, but my conscience got to me & I credited the guy's site a few minutes later. I guess he could restrict his site if he cared, but it felt like a grey area to me. Is there a set of ethics that you more webwise folks go by?
posted by gimli at 2:16 PM on April 19, 2001

gimli, most of us probably feel that putting something out in public ... i.e. on the web ... automatically means that it's acceptable to link to. This can be abused, of course, and can be both a contextual annoyance1 and a bandwidth problem for the host.

1 From this essay, where he renamed the gif to suicide2.gif due to so many people linking to it standalone. I couldn't remember where that was and it took me 15 minutes to find!
posted by dhartung at 6:40 PM on April 19, 2001

When possible it's generally better to link to a page that contains the image, that way the people that created the image are more likely to get traffic to their "main" site (via a link on that page that says "main site" or somesuch) but generally speaking, when you want to embed an image in the actual page, I'd suggest embedding the image, then providing a link to the site you found it on.
posted by cCranium at 7:18 AM on April 20, 2001

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