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RfC Should we include this image?[edit]

The following discussion is an archived record of a request for comment. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion. A summary of the conclusions reached follows.
There is consensus for including the image. The majority opinion cites WP:NOTCENSORED, in this section of the policy page we find that the main page is WP:DISC which warns of triggering by images. The minority argument is mainly that the image may cause physical harm, but offers no examples of physical harm happening from the specific image. It also cites WP:UNDO, but only for the image and not for the other uses of the same source. There is also discussion of collapsing the image, but there is no consensus to do so. AlbinoFerret 20:27, 24 October 2015 (UTC)

Nelumbo Nucifera fruit - botanic garden Adelaide.jpg

Should we include this image? Last RfC one year or so ago was inconclusive [1] Further discussion here Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 00:58, 24 August 2015 (UTC)

Support inclusion and show[edit]

  • Support
  1. Term is virtually unknown and therefore the image is useful/educational to identify the supposed fear.
  2. It is controversial whether or not the condition even exists[2]
  3. If the condition does exist those that have it have likely turned off images generally on their browser so that they only view text as similar images abound on the Internet per Help:Options_to_hide_an_image
  4. Many media sources show similar images when discussing this topic so we are not out of line with social norms [3]

You put these together and I simply do not see evidence of harm to anyone by including this image and I see a detriment to the many people who are looking up this topic after seeing the media regarding it.Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 00:37, 24 August 2015 (UTC)

  • support I believe it best if the reader has full access to the article, text and image, we would be doing harm by not showing the image...IMO (only knowledge can defeat fear)--Ozzie10aaaa (talk) 00:46, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • An RfC is meant to be a discussion, similar to MfDs, where actual arguments are presented. It is not a tally of votes. So unless you expand your support with an actual explanation, it will be discounted by the closer. SilverserenC 01:12, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Do you feel then that we should be including triggering images in the article on epilepsy and other neurological articles? If not, then why not? How is that different? SilverserenC 01:21, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
staying on topic, I believe, showing the image best--Ozzie10aaaa (talk) 01:33, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
It is different in many ways. 1) there excellent evidence that epilepsy exists 2) that sort of image is not central to the understanding of epilepsy 3) significant harm would result. None of that applies here. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 02:07, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
3 applies to including strobing images in epilepsy, and contradicts 2. If the condition is real enough that someone would be doing that, then there is harm for including it.
@Ozzie10aaaa: Please read Phobia, it's not simply the same as fear from ignorance. Ian.thomson (talk) 02:48, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
to be clear "is a claimed pathological fear of objects with irregular patterns of holes" [4]--Ozzie10aaaa (talk) 10:08, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Do you have sources saying that mental health authorities have concluded that phobias (which are real) cannot be focused on irregular arrangements of holes? The APA saying they haven't gotten around to distinguishing it from the other varieties of phobia is not the same as a denial. Do you have a reason for (indirectly) accusing an upstanding and good-faith editor of nine years of lying? Ian.thomson (talk) 12:03, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Noone is claiming that anyone is lying, just that you've misunderstood the nature of phobias. By your reasoning pantophobia should be entirely blank because anything can trigger the phobia (but maybe that could trigger leukophobia; or kenophobia – a fear of empty spaces aka horror vacui). Wikipedia is not a WP:CRYSTALBALL and even if this were one day in the future be recognized (it won't) as a clinical phobia that is irrelevant now. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 14:41, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Support People with this condition encounter triggering images frequently. They may not like it, but they aren't surprised by it. And this particular image is a relatively moderate trigger. Similar images are commonly used by journalistic sources that cover the condition. Looie496 (talk) 13:36, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • @Looie496: This is not about encountering such images elsewhere, this is only about on the specific phobia pages that discuss such phobias. People with said phobias are highly likely to come to these articles to learn about them and it is irresponsible to our readers for us to involuntarily trigger their phobias when they do so. At minimum, we should allow them the option to view such images on the specific phobia articles by clicking to show them. Similarly, we do not show flashing or strobing lights on the epilepsy page, even though that is the primary public understanding of a causative agent for epileptic seizures. SilverserenC 16:40, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Strong support as it is not a recognized condition, and the image has been chosen to give an inkling of what the article is about. We do not hide images and the only other alternative is removing it in its entirety – which would be be catering to fringe science, with some interpretation of the condition being pure pseudoscience. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 14:22, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Support without an infobox and with a reduced size. QuackGuru (talk) 18:36, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Do you have an actual argument? Because you haven't given one. SilverserenC 18:39, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Support whatever. Since the condition isn't acknowledged to be real and there are no protocols in place for either doing harm or doing no harm, arguments to that effect are moot. Keep the image or remove it, but do not base the argument on the claims that anyone at all "suffers" from this supposed phobia. jps (talk) 19:00, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Support inclusion as (1) encyclopedic, and (2) reflective of practice followed by reliable sources. To expand:
  1. I came across this discussion through WP:VPP, and frankly the description "fear of holes", "irregular patterns of holes" is not close to as helpful in explaining what is being talked about (I initially imagined something like caves or fishing nets), as the image. The image is not simply gratuitous, but useful to the general reader in understanding the subject of the article.
  2. I am not the only one who seems to think so, since the editorial decision to include such images has been made by almost every source on the subject including the first scientific paper describing the phenomenon, as well as popular accounts in mainstream publications such as the Scientific American, Washington Post, Popular Science, CBS News, Smithsonian Magazine, NPR, The Atlantic, and The Independent (the Statesman Journal appears to be the sole exception, although only the first page seems to have been archived so that too is not certain).
FWIW, the above two reasons would stand even if the existence and prevalence of the phobio were conclusively demonstrated/refuted, and I am not sure why the controversy over that issue is relevant to this discussion. Also note I am not making a "include it just because we can" argument; I believe there is a positive case for inclusion of the image(s). Abecedare (talk) 20:35, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
@Abecedare: So, basically, you are advocating we do things like putting a strobing light image into the epilepsy article, since that would explain to our readers what the main known cause is for causing epileptic seizures? You are directly advocating physical harm on our readers? SilverserenC 21:09, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
I see lots of sources which indicate that low frequency flashing lights can cause a reflexive seizure for some with photosensitive epilepsy. I see absolutely no sources that indicate that pictures of lotus seed pods have ever caused any physical harm to anyone anywhere. jps (talk) 21:33, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
@Silver seren:, firstly "basically you are advocating <something extreme>" is not a helpful approach to discussion, and I hope you'll avoid such hyperbole and misrepresentation in the future. But addressing the merits of your point: I would be opposed to including such a strobing light video in the Epileptic seizure article because (1) strobing lights are not "the main known cause" or even among the top known causes for epileptic seizures (and, thus not essential to understanding the subject), (2) unlike ""irregular patterns of holes", the meaning of strobing lights is IMO unambiguous in general use, and (3) reliable sources on the subject don't do so. Abecedare (talk) 21:42, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Yes I also do not think we should show flashing lights in the epilepsy article. But that is not the discussion here. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 02:54, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • support inclusion of image - wikipedia is not censored because some people may be squeamish. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 20:49, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Shall we abolish MediaWiki:Bad_image_list? EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 20:50, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
I am not aware that any of the images on that list are there because they made someone squeamish. If they are, they should be removed. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 12:14, 2 October 2015 (UTC)
@TheRedPenOfDoom: I am admittedly close to a position of flipping you off for that comment. Screw you and your desire to cause physical harm to our readers. SilverserenC 21:09, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
@Silver seren: We are not here to "help protect" people from imaginary things. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 21:11, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Are you an asshole like this to people all the time? SilverserenC 21:15, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Do you always make ad hominem attacks against others or do you sometimes base your discussions on content, sources and policy? -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 12:42, 26 August 2015 (UTC)
There is absolutely no evidence that the image of a lotus seed pod can cause physical harm to readers. jps (talk) 21:30, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Except for, you know, the published evidence. SilverserenC 21:41, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
That source does not show that an image of a lotus seed pod has ever caused any physical harm to anyone. jps (talk) 22:04, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Is that a truly necessary restriction? Let's say that it "only" makes someone severely distressed for an hour or two. Do you want to be the person who goes on record as believing that if something makes you hyperventilate for 60 seconds, then it's really bad because it's "physical harm", but if it only makes you get so emotionally upset that you behaved strangely and therefore lost your job or prompted the neighbors to call the police because they thought you were mentally ill, then there's nothing wrong with it at all? I believe that limiting our concept of "harm" to purely physical harm, or to purely permanent harm, is inappropriate. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:20, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
Fair enough, but I'm not even sure it causes any harm. The studies presented do not seem to indicate this. jps (talk) 01:50, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Strong support - this must rank up there with the silliest RfCs ever. МандичкаYO 😜 09:32, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Strongly support inclusion. I think the image is necessary for understanding the topic, since it makes it clear that it relates to clusters of holes in certain patterns, not maintenance holes or sewer gratings. Even if the image were to elicit a response in some readers (and I do not think the majority of readers of this articles will be trypophobes), there is substantial evidence that exposure therapy is an effective way of reducing phobias. The reaction may be unpleasant, but it is not harmful. Even a panic attack, which is said to feel like a heart attack, does not harm the body. (In contrast, an epileptic seizure triggered by strobe lights is medically dangerous.)
In reference to the scenarios described by WhatamIdoing (talk · contribs): how could the subject in that example manage to function in their own home, let alone at a job, without ever seeing patterns of holes, only to have Wikipedia cause their downfall? A true trypophobe would almost certainly make efforts to avoid seeing trigger objects; that's a part of phobias. So they would assume this page would trigger them. And it could just as easily cause a response without an image; reading or thinking about the object might be sufficient. Concluding, reactions to phobias are not harmful and treatment would probably include cognitive behavioral therapy where the person is exposed to the trigger. Roches (talk) 01:40, 29 August 2015 (UTC)
I think you'll find that it's more complicated than that. First of all, it's not "a pattern of holes"; it's being disgusted solely by an irregular pattern of holes (or bumps). This is much more "disgusted by skin diseases" than "frightened by polka dots", and these patterns don't turn up very often in everyday life. I'm looking around me, and I don't see anything that qualifies. Secondly, surprise matters for things that are disgusting or frightening. This makes sense if you think about cleaning up dog poop: a dog owner might not mind doing it on purpose, but even if you're wearing gloves, you don't want to be surprised to discover poop in your hands. Thirdly, if the trigger is visual, then reading words about it won't trigger it. For example, people who have a problem with visually induced motion sickness don't develop symptoms from talking about the fact that reading in the car triggers nausea and vomiting.
Also, your assertion below that desensitization therapy is harmless is false. It doesn't always work, and it can trigger panic attacks or increase symptoms. Treatment is always about the tradeoffs between risks and benefits. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:00, 31 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Support per WP:NOTCENSORED. If a proposal is to be presented to change this policy by making an exception for phobias, it should be done at a different forum. The image aids in the explanation of the subject. The encyclopedia serves all readers, not just those with this particular phobia, whom may find the image unsettling.Godsy(TALKCONT) 05:54, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Do note that I was already doing just as such in another forum when Doc felt the need to drag us over here for this specific topic because of it. SilverserenC 18:20, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
That is wrong. There was a specific discussion about this page at the village pump–and this article was specifically targeted with removal of the image. There was no mention of trying to change policies. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 00:07, 3 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Support per Doc James above and MOS:IMAGES, which, to my reading, suggests the default should be to include such an image. Having gone through the opposes and finding the arguments unconvincing, I'm supporting the default position. However, that's because this proposal is premised on including this image or not (or collapsing it). If instead we were choosing between this image and a second image of equal encyclopedic value that didn't present such a risk, I'd likely support the other image. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 19:42, 4 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Strongly Support The wiki isn't censored. I think most people visiting the page would be visiting it to find out what it is, rather than those who have it trying to read what Wikipedia says about it. Jerod Lycett (talk) 00:08, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Support - image is necessary for understanding the topic of this Wikipedia article. We are doing no harm in including the image. Comatmebro User talk:Comatmebro 17:57, 17 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Support - in accordance with Wikipedia:Offensive material. Whether the image is offensive or not is immaterial as it a tremendous benefit to the article and no suitable substitute exists. Stickee (talk) 04:51, 23 September 2015 (UTC)

Show or collapse[edit]

  • show preferred, collapse OK I'm not convinced that the principal audience of this is people who think they have the condition, but if need be the image can be collapsed. For those who don't know about the supposed condition, an image is obviously helpful (I'm assuming we have some source that says that this is the sort of image that allegedly causes problems: if it isn't then obviously it shouldn't be here anyway). Mangoe (talk) 00:16, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Show preferred, collapse OK As per my comment below. I can't find any policy reason to exclude the image. I do believe the article is less informative without an image of the types of holes that trigger this condition. I don't have a strong reason for or against spoiler-collapsing the image but I do worry about the precedent if we collapse it. SPACKlick (talk) 14:35, 25 August 2015 (UTC)

Remove or collapse[edit]

  • Remove or collapse The article is short the image is large and thus appears wp:undue. The article is not about lotus blossoms, so the image is clearly tangential, which would lead to remove ,however, it may be helpful to the understanding of some, so collapse is fine too. (Collapse was also the result at the end of the last RfC) Alanscottwalker (talk) 00:48, 24 August 2015 (UTC) Changing to remove only, in deference those who think that collapse cannot accord with the MOS, the image remains undue. See WP:ONUS Alanscottwalker (talk) 07:55, 1 September 2015 (UTC) Also persuaded by the remove comments below, where they argue the misleading or tangential nature of the proposed image. Alanscottwalker (talk) 15:55, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Remove or collapse I don't feel that the image is necessary for understanding of the topic, as this phobia is pretty clear cut compared to others, nor do we want to immediately be presenting an image to our readers that will cause involuntary negative physical reactions. Per WP:SURPRISE and WP:LEADIMAGE, the principle of least astonishment calls for circumspection in this regard. While we do not censor images that offend people or are a part of moral panic, I do not feel that it is beneficial to include images that will cause our readers to actually have a physical attack. This is also why we don't include an image of flashing or strobing lights in the epilepsy article. At the very least, we should collapse it under a show tab so that our readers have the choice to look at it on their own. SilverserenC 01:09, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
" The average reader should not be shocked, surprised, or overwhelmingly confused by your article. " and [[Wikipedia:Offensive_material#.22Not_censored.22_does_not_give_special_favor_to_offensive_content| " controversial images should follow the principle of 'least astonishment': we should choose images that respect the conventional expectations of readers for a given topic as much as is possible without sacrificing the quality of the article. "] Given that every publicly available source that we use features images prominently [5] [6] [7] [8] [9], the average reader would be ASTONISHED that we didn't include such identifying image. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 12:39, 26 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Remove If someone doesn't understand the written word "pathological fear of objects with irregular patterns of holes," the image would leave the poor illiterate with the impression that this article is about a plant. The image does nothing except perhaps test whether one has trypophobia, which is not Wikipedia's job. If it depicted the phobia itself (as the cartoon at Arachnophobia does), it'd be a different. The article affirms that there are thousands of people for whom the condition appears to be real, even if the APA has not classified this specific phobia beyond their general catch-all for phobias (a broad and variable condition which is confirmed by mental health authorities, of which this is a plausible variation on). The article loses nothing from removing the picture, and stands to cause harm if included. This is not like removing images which offend chosen beliefs, because this is not a matter of choice -- in other words, WP:NOTCENSORED is counterbalanced by WP:IAR, WP:DBAJ, and WP:POINT. Ian.thomson (talk) 03:00, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Do you have any evidence that the image stands to cause harm if included? Perhaps you could point to an expert in phobias who indicates that this is the case, for example? jps (talk) 14:33, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Remove or choose different image - Image adds minimal information but has potential to cause readers real distress. It's reasonable to extend WP:SHIT to this. Further, the text of the article does not specify lotus seed pods as an example, so its inclusion is WP:OR without further citation. This also violates WP:LEADIMAGE points #2 and #3. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 03:45, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
    Can you point to a reliable source that indicates that an image of lotus seed pods can cause readers real distress? I haven't found anything convincingly showing this to be the case. jps (talk) 14:32, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
    @I9Q79oL78KiL0QTFHgyc: source is on the caption of the image in the article. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 16:29, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
    Whaaaaaat? You're using a speculative article in the Washington Post to show that an image of lotus seed pods can cause readers real distress? Care to quote the source exactly and explain how this is at all convincing? jps (talk) 18:03, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Hide image with a trigger warning or remove. By the way, the assertion by Doc James that the RfC a year ago was inconclusive does not appear to be true. Cla68 (talk) 04:32, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • It was only nominally inconclusive. The consensus for removal was clear, but then nothing happened for a long time and it was eventually just forgotten about. SilverserenC 05:02, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • I th8ink that collapse is the best choice. An image is helpful, although not required, to allow readers to have a better idea of what sort of things cause this reaction in people (and there seems no doubt that there is a reaction, whether it is a "true" phobia or not). But as was mentioned in the original VPP discussion, a lead image is displayed on previews before anyone even opens the article on the mobile site, and is instantly visible when a person opens the article, as people who suffer from this condition might be more prone to do than random people. The potential for harm is real, and a collapsed image that cvan be displayed with a single cl9ick is not censored. I have been strong in applying WP:NOTCRNSORED in the past, but this seems to em a very different situation. This is not a matter of offending someone's beliefs, political, religious or whatever. This is a medical issue. DES (talk) 12:15, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
    • Can you point to any documented evidence that seeing this image harms people? jps (talk) 14:27, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Remove or collapse The article's short enough that a visual aid is not required to explain that the phobia is based on irregular patterns of holes in an object. It is very much reasonable that a person that involuntarily suffers from this (whether it is a "real" phobia or not) will want to read on our article about it, and so it makes no sense to present an unfiltered image that would set off this involuntarily fear particularly when it doesn't need an illustration to understand it. --MASEM (t) 16:23, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
    • How do you know that the image will set off this involuntary fear? Do you have evidence that such is the case? jps (talk) 18:06, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
      • Since this article is based around studies to see what this fear might come from (and associating with an reflexive response of the brain) while it might not be the same type of psychological fear that, say, arachnophobia, is, we do have a source from professions that say that people reacted to images as such in a similar fashion. To that end we should be giving the benefit of doubt that this is a legit fear and avoid having an immediate visible image that could trigger it. (Same reason we'd not put a picture of a spider, immediately visible on the arachnophobia page, even though we do know that is an established psychological fear). --MASEM (t) 19:15, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
But the article isn't based around studies! It's based solely on popular press releases and anecdotes! Where do we have a source that says people react similar,y all I am seeing is sources that state it isn't the same thing. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 19:31, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, User:Masem, there doesn't seem to exist any studies that show anything at all about whether there is any harm in the triggering that may occur from such images. Hiding or removing the image here is no more reasonable than hiding or removing the image at the article on lotus flower. jps (talk) 20:33, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
A study like [11] or [12] seem to exist, and while not proving with 100% uncertainity it is a fear, it is affirming that in a subset of the population they do see a response that they believe is related to instincts rather than a direct psychological fear. And we should not be looking if the response is "harmful", but just that it is an involuntary response, which is what these appear to confirm. --MASEM (t) 20:46, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
If the images are not harmful (and neither of the preliminary studies you cite make any claims that are even close to that idea), then no one truly suffers from them. That makes your argument moot. jps (talk) 20:52, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
If we are including images that cause readers to involuntarily respond in an unusual manner, we should not be showing them front and center. It's not about harm to readers but the idea of "shock value" (this is the whole point of principle of least astonishment). --MASEM (t) 20:57, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
You are claiming that the image has a certain "shock value", but I find that claim to be dubious. I think that discomfort is not the same thing as shock. jps (talk) 21:01, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
The key word to keep in mind is involuntary. Other images that have used as what what we don't censor, like nudity, are images that create a voluntary reaction - the person has opted to react in a given way (whether through society or personal choice or a number of other manners). Psychological fears and instincts and things like photo-sensitivity are things that people come by unwillingly, and we should be respecting that to the best of our abilities. --MASEM (t) 21:33, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
No, that's not the key word, and your analysis is ludicrous. Involuntary reactions happen with lots of things, that doesn't make the reaction something that is more important than any other reaction. Some people have involuntary reactions to nudity (and that's actually IN the DSM!!!) but the involuntary nature of these reactions is not what indicates that they are harmful. Photosensitivity can be harmful. Pictures of lotus seed pods are not harmful. jps (talk) 21:37, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Let's be clear, that I mean the different being using a nude image to discuss a part of human anatomy as a lead image, compared to using a nude image to illustrate Gymnophobia (which is what I believe you mean is in the DSM). People will take offense to the first, but that's a voluntary result, while the latter is involuntarily and potentially harmful if the reader has no idea how their body will react. That feeling of not known what your body will do (the whole nature of these psychological fears) is what we should not be causing to our readers on topics related to that fear that they might be reading. --MASEM (t) 21:48, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────To understand your point completely, then, you are only concerned when an image will cause an involuntary reaction that is judged by you to be negative in an article about that reaction. jps (talk) 22:03, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
In general yes; first its any involuntary reaction (which is hard to judge as negative or not, it's simply a reaction completely out of the person's control). But it only appears to the article about that reaction, and not elsewhere, as there is reasonable expectation that a person that learns they suffer from X (a phobia or the like) is going to come to WP to read about X. It does not apply to images across the board; the image of the lotus blossom should still be presented at the lotus blossom page for visual identification of the flower. --MASEM (t) 22:34, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Obviously we wouldn't remove or hide images that would provoke positive involuntary reactions on pages written about those reactions, would we? jps (talk) 23:05, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
I'd beg the question of a "positive" involuntary reaction. If your body reacts to something in a manner not under your control, that's pretty much a negative; severity might be the next question (there's a difference between a reflex tic and having a panic attack) but its not really appropriate to categorize involuntary actions as positive or negative, just they are involuntary. --MASEM (t) 23:14, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Sexual attractions are involuntary and not often considered "negative" on the whole (though there are instances of such). Many images we have in our discussion of human sexual impulses could cause involuntary reactions in readers. jps (talk) 23:37, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Remove, don't collapse I think this is actually a beautiful image, but I didn't learn anything from looking at it. I think it would be adequate to name examples in the text with links to multiple pages like Nelumbo nucifera#Uses (which has a gallery of three images that all show this pattern). If we're going to include it, then don't collapse it, because that produces accessibility problems. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:26, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Remove. Several people have already pointed out the obvious compromise, which is to remove the picture and just include an inline link to the lotus article; given that this simple solution exists, it's hard to understand why people are so vociferously insisting that the picture remain in the article. It seems like some people are arguing from an ideological WP:NOTCENSORED standpoint, but let's look at what NOTCENSORED actually says. It doesn't give editors carte blanche to add offensive material wherever they like, but offers advice on how to intelligently discuss the inclusion of such material. For example:
Discussion of potentially objectionable content should usually focus not on its potential offensiveness but on whether it is an appropriate image, text, or link.
Well, this simply isn't an appropriate image, per WP:LEADIMAGE points #2 and #3 (and arguably #1), and also per basic human decency. NOTCENSORED also directs the reader to WP:Offensive material, which says
controversial images should follow the principle of 'least astonishment': we should choose images that respect the conventional expectations of readers for a given topic as much as is possible without sacrificing the quality of the article.
and also
Offensive material should be used only if its omission would cause the article to be less informative, relevant, or accurate, and no equally suitable alternative is available.
In this case, there is an equally suitable alternative (an inline link), which means removing the picture won't make the article the slightest iota less informative. Personally, I think this whole NOTCENSORED thing is a red herring, because the policy wasn't written with this kind of image in mind – but even if it isn't completely irrelevant, it doesn't say what some editors seem to think it says. DoctorKubla (talk) 07:45, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
In a discussion between people who support removing an image and who support keeping an image it is not a compromise to simply remove the image and replace it with a link. I tend to agree with you that WP:NOTCENSORED is irrelevant here. The real question needs to be whether this is an editorially justified inclusion. I don't really have an answer one way or another, but think that our editorial decisions should not be made by appeals to human decency when there doesn't seem to be any harm done by an image. After all, it is entirely possible that the desires to remove the image are all just pointy trolling. Of course, we're supposed to assume good faith that this is not the case, but when the arguments for removal are as anemic as those being given here, it's difficult to wrap one's head around why the arguments are being made. To be clear, the best argument for removal was the one by WhatamIdoing above which is that the image, for her, apparently serves no purpose and did not teach her anything. Fair enough, remove images that are not doing any good editorially. But all the other justifications are based on innuendo and assumptions about harm that are not backed up by evidence. jps (talk) 11:12, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Collapse or remove per the rationale offered by EvergreenFir. Regardless of whether it is recognized by the DSM, I think having the image there could prevent readers who think they have this from learning about it. gobonobo + c 12:15, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Collapse I do not think that the picture should be removed because that seems like unneccesary censorship but I do believe that it should be collapsable and provide a warning in order to prevent any physical harm. Tortle (talk) 02:11, 26 August 2015 (UTC)
What physical harm? jps (talk) 12:01, 26 August 2015 (UTC)
Well feeling distress to the point of throwing up is harmful as one would feel physically ill. Tortle (talk) 20:50, 27 August 2015 (UTC)
Reactions such as that to images are not harmful. Please don't peddle ignorance. jps (talk) 17:59, 29 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Collapse, do not remove- Maybe I'm just unimaginative, but I found the picture greatly aided my understanding of the article. In particular, it was helpful to read the characterizations of the phobia by those who experience it while looking at an example. I don't think linking to different articles for examples will be as effective. At the same time, I can see the merit in not including phobia-inducing images in phobia articles. That sort of self-censorship, even where warranted, should always be as minimally intrusive as possible, which suggests collapsing rather than removing.--Trystan (talk) 13:29, 28 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Remove: collapsing is just going to bring on a whole bunch of unnecessary hate from the MOS fundamentalists.

    If this is a thing, the image will make it more difficult for sufferers to read the article, and they're a pretty important segment of the article's audience. If it's not a thing, we lose nothing: the article's description is more than clear enough; the image adds nothing but decoration. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 05:15, 30 August 2015 (UTC)

its not an actual thing, so no, that is not an "important segment" of readers. and we do not edit to appease a segment of readers even if it were real. THAT would indeed be a slippery slope that we do not want to go down. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 18:34, 30 August 2015 (UTC)
@TheRedPenOfDoom: Are you saying that i'm lying? SilverserenC 01:57, 31 August 2015 (UTC)
Silver seren – I'm sorry, what? Since when does anecdotal evidence mean anything? -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 07:01, 31 August 2015 (UTC)
TRPOD isn't discussing the science either. He is accusing everyone who says they have trypophobia of lying and making it up. SilverserenC 08:56, 31 August 2015 (UTC)
No, delusions are neither lying nor making things up. Neither is self-diagnosis on the basis of ignorance. There are many reasons beyond lying that people who might think they have a condition may actually be mistaken. jps (talk) 12:18, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Collapse if it's available. If Wikipedia style says no, then the style needs to change. If it's not available, then remove it and provide links if it's so necessary. I've noticed this condition about myself since I was in elementary school 30 years ago and my friends all thought I was a little nutty when I would tell them about it. Finally, I looked on the internet about 5 years ago, and found a significant number of people that describe pretty much EXACTLY what I've felt since childhood. If it's a delusion, it's apparently a singular delusion shared by thousands of people with very similar symptoms. Why would we make this up? The amount of arrogance displayed here with people who have no idea what they're talking about and have not studied it telling people who have lived with this their entire lives that they're making it up is astounding. Also, would you force someone who wanted to know more about torture to experience it first hand literally? Because that's exactly what putting that picture on the top is for some of us. I have to expend serious self control to avert my eyes when looking at this article. I frankly find it amazing people can talk so confidently about something they know nothing about. If you don't know, you don't know. On the other hand, if you've lived it your entire life, maybe you have some inkling about what bothers you, whether it's a delusion or it's real. The people who make it their mission in life to cite style guides that only a tiny percentage of editors read or care about are what's killing Wikipedia. Wongba (talk) 02:32, 10 September 2015 (UTC)
But that just the point, even if you have a reaction it is not a phobia. And if it is a phobia you are not making anything better by avoiding the stimulus. It would be like explaining Myiasis without images–because they could disguest people.-- CFCF 🍌 (email) 23:42, 12 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Collapse or remove I have to say I did not know anything about this until I came here to respond to the RfC, but I just had a very noticeable "reaction" to the image. Very strange. In any event, it would seem imprudent to include an image of the cause of a phobia to be placed without some sort of filter for it. Yobol (talk) 17:31, 12 September 2015 (UTC)
Having a "reaction" is not a reason to remove or hide the image–Wikipedia is WP:NOTCENSORED. The literature indicates this is a physiological disgust reaction, possible related to the ingrained fear of botfly infection. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 23:45, 12 September 2015 (UTC)
I get your argument, I just don't agree with it. I happen to believe we should not intentionally invoke a physiologic disgust response, (or whatever the response is) in readers - make it collapsed, and let the reader decide. Doubly true since the people who have this reactions are more likely to be the ones reading the article to find out about it. Yobol (talk) 23:49, 12 September 2015 (UTC)
Get over yourself CFCF. This is not censorship in any traditional sense. It's not preventing the public from finding out about some corrupt government or business issue. This isn't hiding porn from virgin minds. This isn't about protecting hate speech. People are just asking to collapse an image. ANYONE who wants to view the image just has to expend the energy of a single click. Your intransigence on this issue means people like me will not visit the article in the future, and people like me are the very ones that might find the most use from it. You say this isn't a phobia. Are you a psychologist? If not, then you really don't have any standing to say that. After seeing one of these types of images, I couldn't get the image out of my head for several days. My skin would crawl incessantly over that time if I even thought about the context of the image much less view it. Your response even includes the word "fear". I seriously don't understand the puritanical and zealous reaction to this. Do we have a graphic picture of dismembered bodies on the mutilation article? No we don't. Is that censorship or good taste? People are telling you this picture negatively affects their ability to read the article compared to other articles. Just collapse the image and be done with it. Collapsing the image is NOT CENSORSHIP because it's still available with a click. It's just good taste not to stick a hot poker in the reader's eyes. Wongba (talk) 02:54, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Since you love pointing to the MOS so much, the 2nd sentence is: Use common sense in applying it; it will have occasional exceptions... I believe this is worth an exception. Wongba (talk) 02:59, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Anecdote is not worth anything. The current image of a plant can not be compared to pictures of mutilation – it is an extremely mild example. CFCF 💌 📧 22:52, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Collapse I checked a few, and other wikipedia pages on phobias avoid potentially harmful images. It would thus be consistent to not have an image here either. However, it would be in the spirit of education to include a collapsed example, so the many many ignorant people can see what a trypophobia-inducing picture 'looks like'. The plant already used will suffice. For what it's worth, the mutilated heel with myiasis does not trigger my mild trypophobia, where the plant does. (talk) 02:45, 16 December 2015 (UTC)
Extended content
Using this picture of a heel with myiasis would be going to far.


  • I don't think creating this RFC was the most productive avenue to take. This involves the WP:NOTCENSORED policy and a class of articles. Better to have discussion on a policy page with something like, "Should we avoid having images that trigger involuntary negative physiological effects in articles specifically about the involuntary negative physiological effects?" --NeilN talk to me 01:26, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
      • This should be decided on a case by case basis not by some rule IMO and thus the RfC here. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 02:09, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
If a problem is the result of the (mis)application of a policy to a specific class of articles, and that problem is resolved through an addendum to the policy, then it is a policy problem, not an article problem. Directing it to the article hides the problem. If the problem is not real, then there would be no reason to change policy. Ian.thomson (talk) 12:07, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
We had the discussion on a policy page, specifically WP:VPP. There was consensus there, People came from this page to say that consensus didn't apply. Hence this RfC, although i might have started it in a new section on a that page or adifferent page. DES (talk) 12:18, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Why is it that when something like an opt-in family-friendly filter is proposed (something that I would bet that a great many readers would love to have and that parents are rather surprised to find out that their kids are being shown explicit pictures), it usually gets shouted down, but we're talking about censoring Wikipedia because someone with an obscure phobia might have that phobia triggered? Whatever argument you can come up with for censoring pictures of obscure phobia triggers, there are 10,000 times as many people who wish that we would exercise a modicum of decency when it comes to not accidentally exposing children to x-rated images. --B (talk) 02:00, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
      • I supported the idea of an image filter for those who wanted to use it. I did agree with the concern that it could be misused but did not see that concern as great enough not to allow it. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 02:04, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
No idea, but that's OTHERSTUFF. Filter proposal failure does not mean we shouldn't address this issue. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 03:50, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Except offense and modesty aren't something we can control. Ideas and opinions on such things vary widely around the world and we can't accommodate all of them. If so, we would have to do ridiculous things like never show the bottom of feet or, for that matter, never show women's skin. But phobias aren't something that is based on opinion, they are scientific, physiological symptoms. Thus, accommodating for them is simpler and much more reasonable, since they can cause physical harm to readers. SilverserenC 02:06, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
    • There's such a thing as not letting perfect be the enemy of good enough. List of phobias has a huge number of phobias and censoring Wikipedia for anything that might trigger one of them is ridiculous. On the other hand, most normal people believe that young children shouldn't be exposed to sexually explicit images. And while very few people suffer from trypophobia, 100% of the population, at some point, experienced being a child. Providing an opt-in family filter is a reasonable step - cleansing Wikipedia of phobia triggers is not. --B (talk) 02:21, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
There's a difference between removing all images which might be phobic stimuli from any article, and not putting a phobic stimulus in the specific article on that particular phobia. Spiders in the spider article? Totally relevant. Spiders in the biology article? Sure. Spiders in the arachnophobia article? Obviously WP:DICKish and against WP:COMMONSENSE. "Cleansing Wikipedia of phobia triggers" is a strawman argument that people need to drop already. Ian.thomson (talk) 03:05, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Correct that it's a straw man and appeal to slippery slope. The VP discussion was clear that this was about image on articles specifically about phobias or topics of specific triggers. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 05:21, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
If it did not cause anxiety, would an upstanding and good faith editor who's been around and active as long as you and I have claimed to have vomited because of it? Ian.thomson (talk) 03:08, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
The issue for me is the size. QuackGuru (talk) 03:15, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • I just wanted to comment that this is an unusual phobia to try to describe. Telling the reader that "arachnophobia is a fear of spiders" gets the point across perfectly well. I feel like most phobias fall into that category where an image of the feared object would be superfluous. "An irregular arrangement of holes" is...different. Someguy1221 (talk) 05:00, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • I agree. Cla68 (talk) 05:04, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Then, at minimum, if such an image needs to be included, shouldn't we put it behind a Show template? Forcing readers, many of which who will likely be coming to this page because they have the phobia and want to learn more about it, to see a triggering image is not appropriate. The censorship policy was never meant to cover the wiki bringing physical harm to readers. SilverserenC 05:06, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
If it's unclear, then given an example in the prose. ...An irregular arrangement of holes such as a Nelumbo seed pod or a sponge.(cite CBS news) There are simple ways around the image and any lack of clarity. We're not trying to describe a tesseract here. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 05:25, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Do we have any sources beyond the say-so of certain Wikipedians that the image is actually triggering anything that is harmful? jps (talk) 14:35, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
No.-- CFCF 🍌 (email) 14:50, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Yes. Multiple sources used in this article use the lotus pod as an example. Check the source used in the caption of the image. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 16:33, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
I can understand why the lotus seed pod is used as an image. I cannot understand why it's thought that this image is a trigger. jps (talk) 18:04, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
@I9Q79oL78KiL0QTFHgyc: I'm not gonna spoon-feed it to you. The sources in the article say it causes anxiety in some: [13], [14] EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 18:18, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Not at all convincing. People have anxiety about all sorts of things. That does not mean that this image is a trigger. You have not met your WP:BURDEN. jps (talk) 18:57, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Giving you two reliable sources that specify lotus pods as a source of this anxiety is more than meeting my burden. You are choosing to disregard it for some reason. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:01, 24 August 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Try WP:MEDRS and see what sources may pass for a legitimate source about whether something may cause harmful anxiety or not. jps (talk) 19:02, 24 August 2015 (UTC)

As already discussed, this is not in the DSM. We don't need MEDRS to make claims about it. Nor do we need MEDRS to discuss images and their effects on users. MEDRS is for making specific medical claims or discussing medical issues. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:04, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
You have no evidence that this image has a negative effect on anybody. The NPR and WaPo sources do not do that. They merely report on claims of anxiety, but there is no evidence whatsoever of any harm being done by such images. None. jps (talk) 19:07, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Becoming tendentious. We do not need double blind studies to discuss reasonably problematic images. No such request was ever made for, say, MediaWiki:Bad_image_list. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:11, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
But that is just it, it isn't a reasonable problematic image, its an unreasonably problematic image. If the condition does not exist it can not be problematic. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 19:34, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
I think you mean it is unreasonably to call it a problematic image :-) Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 20:26, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
It is WP:DICK to say that just because it's not medicalized it's not real. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 20:41, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
No, it is not. We are allowed to have that opinion, and it seems a legitimate one. There are a lot of contested diseases out there and it is perfectly fine to contest them as such. On the other hand, referencing the meta essay as you've done has been identified by many members of the Wikipedia community as being a problematic and uncivil maneuver. jps (talk) 20:47, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
Sure, and doctors in the 19th century were "allowed to have the opinion" that women's complaints were imaginary because they were inferior beings, and that homosexuality was just a moral problem. Things don't spring into being on the day that they are voted on by a health authority. Something can be real without being recognized, and it can be recognized without being real. I think that when someone says that he's disgusted by something, that it's quite reasonable to assume that he's not lying, even if the authorities haven't decided whether that disgust should be called "a disease". WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:32, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
Well, sure, of course that's true. But we cannot right great wrongs here at Wikipedia on the basis of someone's say-so. There are a lot of people who say that this or that is true and this or that is false contrary to the evidence or the sources we have on a subject. Some of them may be right. If history is any guide, most of them are wrong. There is no way for us to decide who is right and who is wrong before the consensus is swayed one way or another. If Wikipedia had been around in a less enlightened time, I'm sure it would have promulgated problematic ideas and suppressed necessary innovations. I think that's just the price we pay for having a website whose editorial control is dictated by external sources rather than an editorial board. I mean, I'd be happy to have you making our editorial decisions by fiat, but that's really not how things are supposed to work if I understand WP:PAG correctly. jps (talk) 01:54, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
Is showing compassion for readers who are disgusted by (IMO) a relatively unimportant decoration truly a matter of "righting great wrongs"? WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:00, 27 August 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I was referring to your concern over whether the fact that this is not recognized as an actual condition in medical science might be a "great wrong" associated with the way in which medical science in the 19th Century handled certain situations. jps (talk) 12:14, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

  • Discussion regarding removing or hidding this image are not that important except that it would set a precedence. People will use the arguement "others seeing this picture will cause harm" to try to hide all sorts of images. And yes the arguement is typically always "others". We have people trying to remove images of psychological tests as they claim if the uninitiated see them it could cause them harm. We have people attempting to remove information about lie detector tests as they claim it could allow people to "cheat". We have people of certain faiths requesting remove of images as they state it causes them psychological and physical harm. And yes having pictures of Mohammad very likely do cause more harm on the Mahammad page than this one here. The article is simply looked at more frequently by people of that faith.
  • We are an encyclopdia. We provide text and image descriptions of topics. We are not in the job of trying to protect people from themselves. Most people come to Wikipedia via a google search. Does google hide these pictures and only provide text? Nope. Some of their pictures are truely disturbing as they make the holes look like diseases / infestations. Yes does sort of make ones skin crawl. Likely why people are normally repulsed by these images because we are inately repulsed by images that look like disease. Which of course makes evolutionary sense. Similar to how we are repused by feces. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 20:15, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • You are comparing things that are personal prejudices and otherwise nothing to do with harm to readers to things that are actually scientifically shown to be involuntary negative physical reactions. You are being purposefully disingenuous and I think you are aware that you are. And Google's actions have no bearing whatsoever to Wikipedia. Yet another disingenuous claim. SilverserenC 21:19, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • You haven't shown that images of lotus seed pods have ever caused any harm. A squeamish reaction is not harm. jps (talk) 21:34, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • And what exactly would it take to show that? This published study already determined the physiological effects such images had on those with trypophobia. SilverserenC 21:40, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • That study does not show any harm caused by lotus seed pod images. jps (talk) 22:03, 24 August 2015 (UTC)
  • You all need to remember that one of our missions here is to cause no harm. If an image is making people feel insecure, unsafe, threatened, or, especially, physically sick, then we have a duty to remove that photo or, at least, hide it from sight with a trigger warning. Cla68 (talk) 02:00, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • "Cause no harm", as far as I can tell, is not the mission of Wikipedia, as laudable a goal it may be. The problem with the adage that we need to remove things that are causing people to feel insecure, unsafe, threatened, or even physically sick is that unless there is a way to determine whether this has happened or not, there's nothing to prevent me or you or anyone we know from going around and saying, e.g., that all military history articles ought to be removed or have trigger warnings owing to their depictions of violence which makes certain people feel physically ill. The question is, who is qualified here at Wikipedia to make the determination that a particular bit of content or an image is liable to cause harm? I'm happy to accept that we might want to remove or hide certain things that may have that characteristic. I don't want to do it on the basis of whoever decides to show up and contribute on any given day. I'd rather do it on the basis of excellent sources, and, as far as I can tell, there are no sources who are coming close to claiming that the image of a lotus seed pod has made anyone feel insecure, unsafe, threatened, or even physically ill. The level of anxiety reported in the studies was not harmful or threatening in the least. jps (talk) 02:10, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
"Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia" and it is not a bunch of other stuff. People use the argument that we cannot include X or Y as it will harm people with respect to information about drugs of abuse frequently. We have a whole article on Cannabis_cultivation and there is good evidence that cannabis use harms people (either their health or ends them up in jail). Thus we could make a reasonable argument that this article harms people. Should we delete it? Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 03:03, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
A bit off topic, but a worthwhile subject of discussion nonetheless is the question of when content should be removed that causes harm. In my estimation, simply providing information on cannabis cultivation causes no direct harm. It would only be application of the information that could in some circumstances (but by no means all) seen to be causing harm. On the other hand, reprinting child pornography, for example, apart from being illegal also causes direct harm to essentially all involved. The question is, which is the picture of the lotus seed pod? Is it closer to child pornography or is it closer to information on cannabis cultivation? I tend to lead toward the latter. jps (talk) 11:20, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • I'm torn on this one. Whether or not this disease exists we can reasonably expect those who believe they have it to come to this article. Making it so that the first thing they see isn't the object of their believed fear seems reasonable. For instance we don't show a picture of pennywise on coulrophobia or a knife on Aichmophobia although we do have a video of a dog on Cynophobia. Then again the article must also be informative to the non-familiar reader and without the image I think "irregular pattern of holes" is harder to give an impression of to the reader than clown or pointy thing. I think the policy answer is to show the image. I don't think the wiki is harmed by collapsing the image. I think removing the image altogether greatly reduces how informative the article is. SPACKlick (talk) 14:33, 25 August 2015 (UTC)

  • The claim that this will set a precedent is a parade of horribles fallacy. The only "precedent" alluded to on this page is what was done at Arachnophobia. Besides, the actual precedent, already exists: we regularly exclude or reduce information that is tangential, at best. Moreover, it is those who wish to include that have the WP:ONUS to require inclusion - policy is clear that without "consensus to include", it does not go in. Alanscottwalker (talk) 16:04, 25 August 2015 (UTC)
  • As I stated above, the anxiety experienced by individuals with phobias does not cause any enduring physical harm. It is unpleasant; it is discomfort, but not harm. At Phobia, the section on treatments shows that exposure to the object is usually part of therapy. This couldn't be done if exposure carried any medical risks. Any person who reacts strongly enough to feel "physically sick" (which I suppose means nausea) is in need of treatment, and the article should indicate (at least by linking to Phobia) what treatment exists. It does no good (and it may do harm) to facilitate avoidance of the object of a phobia. I think it is also harmful if some kind of 'trigger warning' is used. A phobia is an irrational fear, and providing a means of avoiding the fear helps a subject believe the fear is rational. So saying this article will hurt people if it includes the image is, in a sense, somewhat like saying that we should have spoiler boxes to hide every occurrence of the number 13. Roches (talk) 02:26, 29 August 2015 (UTC)
No. Wikipedia is not therapy. Alanscottwalker (talk) 19:30, 29 August 2015 (UTC)
Alanscottwalker – care to clarify just what you mean? What I see if a well-argumented case by Roches for including mild images to explain the condition. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 07:05, 31 August 2015 (UTC)
Roches is advocating that Wikipedia use exposure therapy on its readers by forcing them to confront images that will cause them psychological distress. SilverserenC 08:59, 31 August 2015 (UTC)
We are not writing a patient handout but an encyclopedia. This there is no reason to exclude these images. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 07:10, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
No. There is no reason to include, at least sufficient to gain a consensus for inclusion. As for Roches comments, they are advocating using this article as therapy. -- Alanscottwalker (talk) 07:38, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Yes there is, first of all it isn't a recognized condition and the only argument against including the image was debunked by Roches. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 10:29, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Entirely incorrect. Per policy, the reason for exclusion or reduction in emphasis is a judgement made all the time on all articles, does its relevance outweigh it's irrelevance, and/or would the information better go in another article. Roches comments are irrelevant, as they propose to use this article for therapy. Your, 'it's not a real thing' hobby horse is also irrelevant, your argument certainly does not make the image anymore useful - its not, at all, an image of a 'not real thing'. --Alanscottwalker (talk) 13:14, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Isn't the image useful for illustrating what kind of image is typical of those included in the Reddit and Youtube compilations? jps (talk) 13:30, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

"Typical" of reddit and youtube does not lead me to think it useful, in the least. The judgement on "typical" is also suspect, if your argument is that an image of a lotus represents an image of a sponge, or any other thing than, no, it does not. Alanscottwalker (talk) 13:37, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Since this is mostly a condition that is blabbed about on reddit and youtube and it is definitely from these locations that it gains the notability necessary for inclusion at all at Wikipedia, it seems only fair that we try to give the reader an indication of what the fuss is all about. Claiming that the judgment of "typical" is suspect makes me believe you didn't read the reliable sources in the article which indicate that the lotus seed pod is a pretty popular image with these trypophobia enthusiasts. jps (talk) 13:41, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Yes, I read the sources. But your personalization argument is as disruptive as it unpersuasive: it does not answer the critique that a lotus does not represent a sponge, nor cheese, nor any of the other things in RS. Alanscottwalker (talk) 13:46, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
So for you it's all or nothing? Either a gallery of images or nothing at all? jps (talk) 13:50, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
No, for me it is nothing, because I am sticking to the question posed in this RfC, and the image is undue, for this short article. -- Alanscottwalker (talk) 14:07, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
But part of your argument seems to be that it isn't a good idea for Wikipedia editors to choose between a lotus seed pod, a sponge, or a brick of cheese. Right? jps (talk) 14:10, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
What's not a good idea is for Wikipedia editors to abandon their editorial discretion. And I don't buy the argument that this image must be here, if it's selected solely as a matter of what may be one trigger - if you think it not real, than the image pretends it is real or gives credence to the claim that this is a possible trigger, and if you think it real, than the image may or may not be a trigger - and is thus, on both counts, that this image is undue, as well as the fact that the information can be, if relevant to any reader, found in other articles and the article is short and simple - so again the image is undue. Alanscottwalker (talk) 14:23, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Aren't we supposed to report what people say and not make judgments on the veracity? I think it is undeniable that images such as these are used in the context of this particular topic. The ontological status of the phobia itself is irrelevant. Claiming the image is "undue" must certainly mean that you think the images are unduly weighted in this topic. That's surprising to me considering that this topic is basically about internet denizens freaking out about images. jps (talk) 14:34, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Reporting what people say does not require using this or any image. This image is undue for the many reasons I stated. Alanscottwalker (talk) 14:58, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Yeah, I read your reasons, but none of them seem to fit WP:UNDUE. On the other hand, your claim that reporting what people say about this topic does not require using this or any image is akin to saying that a particular word is not required to be used in the article. The question is, if someone wants to illustrate an article with an image that is representative of many of the images that are the main focus of this topic's notable online presence, is it a good argument to say, "Remove the image because it's not required to explain the topic."? jps (talk) 15:06, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

Then apparently your argument is we must include anything anyone deems "relevant", no matter how partial the information is, which would render the encyclopedia useless and makes no sense. WP:Undue and WP:ONUS is precisely there to make certain that does not happen. Your last argument for relevance just shows it is undue: the image proposed is not an image of "internet denizens freaking out about images", so not relevant, in the least, let alone due. Alanscottwalker (talk) 15:13, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
What is partial about information that includes an example image of the kinds of images the redditors and youtubers are freaking out about? If you think that the only image that would be appropriate for this article would be one of images of people looking at images, you're either being needlessly pedantic or don't understand what means WP:IMAGE RELEVANCE at all. I note you still haven't explained how your argument relates to the actual text of WP:UNDUE at all. The arguments against image inclusion are, on the whole, just indicative of ignorance. jps (talk) 16:12, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
What is partial about information that includes one example? Unless you are ignorant of what the word partial means than the question answers itself. As for what it has to do with undue, I have explained it, so any ignorance is on your part, not anyone elses. Undue and Onus, keep out information that consensus cannot come to agreement on that it improves the presentation of the encyclopedic article. I perfectly understand WP:IR -- it does not force anyone to support this image in this article. You yourself said in your ivote above: "Keep the image or remove it" so, obviously it is reasonable to remove it. Alanscottwalker (talk) 16:39, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Yep, there are reasonable arguments possible for removing the image. That it is only a "partial" representation of the total collection of images that people bug out about is not one. The "ONUS" has been met by those who say that the image is illustrative. If you have good reason to think the image is not illustrative, you have not yet provided it. jps (talk) 17:41, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
It's a fine reason (partial representation regularly leads to unencyclopedic representation and misrepresentation), and given that there are other fine reasons, as you acknowledge (whether you acknowledge that one or not is irrelevant), than exclude is the way to go. Really, if you think tangential images must be included everywhere, than we will have to disagree. They have not met the ONUS, the ONUS is to get consensus that this image should be included, here, as proposed. --Alanscottwalker (talk) 18:00, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
Again with the gallery argument. It wasn't convincing before and it isn't convincing now. That there are reasonable arguments against including the image is no reason to say that they must win the day as the arguments for inclusion could be better. Further, ONUS is different from CONSENSUS. If most of the arguments are not based in reasonable interpretation of policy, the consensus should not default to the faulty reasoning. jps (talk) 18:33, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
No. There is no gallery argument. No one is proposing any gallery. The RfC is about whether this image is educationally worthwhile to include in this proposed circumstance. You have praised the reasoning that the image does not provide sufficient educational value for inclusion -- my argument is another way to say that, although it also includes the reasonable extension that the claimed benefit of partial representation makes whatever educational value there maybe worse, not educationally better. So, again, if your argument is we must always include an image, even where editors do not find it beneficial to the educational value of the encyclopedia article, then we must disagree. That is called no consensus. Alanscottwalker (talk) 18:45, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Not sufficiently educational because it doesn't include all examples? Got it. And if one example is chosen out of many, it maybe makes the education worse. That's not very convincing. My argument is not that we must always include an image, my argument is that we should consider only well-reasoned arguments. One other has said the picture wasn't useful because it wasn't illustrative. I'm not sure I buy that argument, but at least I understand it. I simply do not understand how using one image of many possible is educationally damaging. jps (talk) 20:26, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

No. Once again, you don't "got it." It's not sufficiently educational because the image is, at very best, tangential, and because it is, as is acknowledged by the support party, partial, as well. They say, it is meant to be very partial, and therefore add to education, but as it is, at most, tangential (not the subject) it does not, quite the opposite. As I said, if you think it not real, than the image pretends it is real or gives credence to the claim that this is a possible trigger, and if you think it real, than the image may or may not be a trigger - and is thus, on both counts, that this image is undue, as well as the fact that the information can be, if relevant to any reader, found in other articles and the article is short and simple - so again the image is undue. See. WP:ONUS. You are also wrong, about "one other": comments like, "[i]f someone doesn't understand the written word "pathological fear of objects with irregular patterns of holes," the image would leave the poor illiterate with the impression that this article is about a plant, or that argue the words are more than sufficient, or that it's educational value is at best, very limited, all argue the image is not a useful illustration for this article -- and this makes sense to anyone with eyes because the image is just a single plant. Alanscottwalker (talk) 21:00, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
The image merely gives an example of one of the images that trypophobia-trippers like(hate) to feast their eyes upon. Since that's the subject of the article, I find the rest of your analysis to be ludicrous. To imagine that an illiterate person would think the article is about a plant is assuming, basically, a level of illiteracy so profound it would be difficult for them to find Wikipedia let alone the page itself. I cannot imagine a scenario where this would occur. Most of the other arguments by others above argue that the image is harmful. Your argument is only intriguing because it's so difficult to understand. jps (talk) 02:00, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
The image merely is a lotus pod. That's not the subject of this article. What is ludicris is your claim to not understand that. Then too, your weak claimed relevance is it's one possible trigger out of many, further demonstrating how absurd the argument is that this image should be used -- your argument is emphatically to place emphasis on one out of many, but that's just placing undue emphasis. Most of the arguments above dispute the educational value of the image, the others have merely failed to convince that it does have the claimed educational value. -- Alanscottwalker (talk) 02:45, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
By your logic, no abstract concept could ever have an image. The subject of this article is an image-tripping game played by people on the internet who look at images such as the one provided. What kinds of images do they look at? For example, lotus seed pods. jps (talk) 11:34, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
No. Given the meaning of "abstract", it only makes sense sometimes editors will have a difference of opinion, on what, if any image to choose (that's where WP:ONUS, comes in) - that does not mean it never happens, I think it happens often. But what's the worse that could happen, this article does not have this image? And, so? Claims that are not even in the article like "image-tripping game" probably don't help to reach consensus, though. Alanscottwalker (talk) 12:13, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
Bad arguments against an image (it causes harm, it doesn't include sponges and cheese) are not what should drive a "no consensus default to remove" argument. jps (talk) 13:36, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
The bad arguments are the supports that seek to give major emphasis to an image based on tenuous relevance claim, and that doesn't actually teach anything, and indeed is meant to be of such partial nature. Alanscottwalker (talk) 16:17, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
The relevance claim is that this image is used by the trypophobia-trippers and the educational value is to show someone who are not familiar with these trippers one such image. You've been unsuccessful in explaining how the image is "partial" at all. A sample or example is not forbidden by any Wikipedia rules. jps (talk) 16:27, 2 September 2015 (UTC)

When I said above that exposure to objects of phobias is often used in therapy, I didn't intend to advocate using this article as therapy, and I don't think I said that including the image would be therapeutic. I did suggest that not including the image, or hiding it, might not really be helpful.

I came here for a random RfC request, and I'm not qualified to say whether exposure to phobic objects works outside the context of exposure therapy guided by a competent professional. However, that therapy is based on the idea that phobias are irrational fears and that it is not dangerous to experience the fear. That would mean that seeing this image cannot actually harm anyone, and it renders irrelevant the argument that this image should be removed because there aren't flashing lights in Epilepsy.

A lot of phobias only exist in the same sense that a group of crows is called a murder; a Greek word, plus "phobia", is the fear of that thing. So, from, it's clear that this is probably not something that exists in any real sense. All of the images in the series would be appropriate somewhere in Wikipedia. Many of them are genuinely nasty, but many medical articles have photos that illustrate the condition and are appropriate at that article. The site, and the videos, show a progression from ordinary objects (like the lotus image used in this article) to images of diseases and some images that are edited. In the videos, nasty objects are interspersed with normal objects. There are suggestions on how to feel.

A normal person might briefly feel disgusted by a photo of a lotus pod after seeing a mesh in a skin graft, or a person with digital holes on them. A normal person might even experience nausea after seeing some of the images, but that's because pictures of wounds, rotting meat, insects, and so on cause that response. It's not because they're clusters of holes. So, if any harm or offense is caused by this article, it is the fault of the people who put those images together.

The talk page guidelines discourage commenting on other editors' comments, and it is not acceptable to misrepresent those comments. "Forcing" people to look at images of lotus seed pods as some part of therapy is unethical, so it must be assumed that I would not advocate that unless I explicitly said that. Please do not advocate for people who supposedly have this condition, because there is no evidence that it is an actual condition, and I am not prepared to accept the research of two psychologists as evidence that anyone at all could be offended by the lotus pod image.

Again, I don't think "irregular patterns of holes" in text adequately describes this, and since this is about the association of images, an example image is necessary. Roches (talk) 21:14, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

Apologies, if you feel misunderstood, but when you said "It does no good (and it may do harm) to facilitate avoidance of the object of a phobia." It seemed, you were advocating we use this article as a means to confront. Regardless, your argument that, "[a]ll of the images in the series would be appropriate somewhere in Wikipedia. Many of them are genuinely nasty, but many medical articles have photos that illustrate the condition and are appropriate at that article. The site, and the videos, show a progression from ordinary objects (like the lotus image used in this article) to images of diseases and some images that are edited. In the videos, nasty objects are interspersed with normal objects." Does not even suggest the conclusion that this image is a good example, of "adequately describing". Alanscottwalker (talk) 21:33, 1 September 2015 (UTC)
So once again you are suggesting a gallery? I don't see why not–except that including too many examples in such a short article is WP:UNDUE–in the same way we don't include every painting on articles about artists.-- CFCF 🍌 (email) 01:25, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
No. I see no need for a gallery, if I did, I would propose one. Alanscottwalker (talk) 02:45, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
Then I suggest you be more coherent about what you are proposing. -- CFCF 🍌 (email) 12:14, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
I'm not proposing anything, the proposal we are discussing in the one in the RfC we are discussing, so, your comment makes no sense. Alanscottwalker (talk) 15:59, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment: May I request that both User:Alanscottwalker and jps step-back from, or at least dial down their contributions to, this discussion? Your respective views on the subject are crystal clear by now and having made >50 edits to the page each, I don't think an additional restaatement or two will change either of your mind, or help other contributors or RFC closer reach a decision. Abecedare (talk) 16:33, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
    • Sorry. I was truly fascinated by his position. jps (talk) 17:17, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
OK. Alanscottwalker (talk) 20:00, 2 September 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment Does it have to be this image? Based on the research and other documentation, couldn't someone "draw" up a reasonable facsimile that wouldn't activate the phobia? For example: Inomyabcs (talk) 12:30, 4 September 2015 (UTC)
    Draft Trypophobia Example.png
First of all, it isn't a phobia–and without provoking the physiological reaction towards the image what is the point?-- CFCF 🍌 (email) 05:29, 7 September 2015 (UTC)
It can be a specific phobia. Not all of the specific phobias are going to be listed out in a nice little list, because there are so many different stimuli in the world that can cause a anxiety disorder. In fact the DSM only lists one phobia, agoraphobia. The rest, it recommends placing under five broad categories when diagnosing the specific phobia: animal, natural environment, blood-injection-injury, situational, or other. As for your second question, I don't know and I don't have the medical background in psychology or mental health services to make that decision. Therefore, I made a different image recommendation and will help out if we want to go that route in using a different image. Inomyabcs (talk) 13:51, 7 September 2015 (UTC)
The current image is supported by references which makes it more suitable. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 09:55, 2 October 2015 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the debate. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

There was no such thing as a consensus. Total lie. Wongba (talk) 06:02, 25 October 2015 (UTC)

At Wikipedia WP:CONSENSUS is based upon the strength of the argument's basis in policy, not on snout counts. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 20:03, 26 October 2015 (UTC)

This image makes me want to stop existing. Can't be on this page while it's visible. — Preceding unsigned comment added by HumanTarget (talkcontribs) 00:24, 14 September 2016 (UTC)

Wikipedia App Version[edit]

The article in the Wikipedia App shows "Of Nicki Minaj" under the header of "Trypophobia". It does not appear in the web version, and I can't figure out how to edit it (to delete it) in the app version. (talk) 18:08, 14 November 2016 (UTC)

Thank you. That is Wikidata related vandalism that has been in place since Sept 24th[15]. Fixed. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 19:21, 14 November 2016 (UTC)
wow nice that you figured that out. horrible that there is a whole new way to vandalize Wikipedia. Jytdog (talk) 20:53, 14 November 2016 (UTC)
Yes have seen a half dozen or so cases like this. IMO all admin on the WPedia should be automatically made admins on Wikidata so that we can take care of these issues more efficiently. Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 21:36, 14 November 2016 (UTC)