Cartoon chaos

Controversial cartoon leads to fierce debate

The image placement of twelve satirical cartoons depicting Muhammad sparked controversy this week, even as Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy, the article in which the cartoons are shown, was linked from the main page.

The cartoons, which were published in a Danish newspaper in September 2005, have attracted international press coverage, and have drawn the ire of many Muslims, who feel the cartoon is insensitive to Muhammad. Similarly, some users believe that the inclusion of the image in Wikipedia's entry is offensive and unnecessary. Other users, however, contended that the article was about the cartoons, and that the collection of cartoons should therefore be displayed near the top of the article.

Three polls showed that most Wikipedians believed the image of the collection should be shown near the top of the article. More than 80% of the voters felt that the image belonged in the article, and over 70% believed that the image should be displayed at the top of the article, rather than further down in it. The third poll, over whether only one of the 12 cartoons should be shown, obtained similar results.

Jimbo Wales weighed in on the debate, saying that even though the "issue is not up to me to decide" and that he would only comment as a normal user, he would "argue for keeping the image in this article" and moving the image to the middle of the article. Nevertheless, the picture remains at the top of the article.

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