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Pictures in signatures are not the occasional used pictures to illustrate something, but show up in every topic. It's already possible that one page contains 25 different 4.5 kb avatars. Users with slow modems will experience serious trouble when loading pages with many (larger) graphics.
Pictures are limited and the limits applies to all images together in the signature:
-250 kbytes max.
-max 650 pixels wide, max 150 pixels high.
This doesn't apply to occasionally used pictures in posts, though one should keep in mind that 56k modem users should be able to download it within a reasonable time.
Scrolling topics containing high signatures is considered difficult, so they are limited there too. A signature can be 10 lines high, 500 characters long, 200 pixels high or what limit is reached first.
The Backroom is an opt-in forum where spicier topics are discussed. Backroom content is not suitable for signatures.
We understand that hardware and bandwidth advanced and we don't want to limit those users, while at the same time we don't want to make signatures unsuitable for those who can't or don't want to use extra. There's a BroadBand toggle in your UserCP. Enable that if you want to see more images. Go to Edit Profile and enter the url of an image you want to use in the Extra signature picture box.
The current limits for that extra picture are: Animated images are no problem, as long as it does not contain sound and/or eye/brain unpleasant animations. Pictures can be 650 pixels wide and 200 high. The filesize is set to 100.0 kb. These are todays limits and members are expected to respect those. However, they are always open to discussion and will be changed when the BroadBand users agree about new limits.
Please use this topic to discuss changes for that extra picture.
The policy is to cover the middle ground by default: there is an option for broadbanders, so there's also one for narrowbanders. Thread Display Options allows to disable pictures, which disables any picture, or just signatures. There are also some other options like the choice to select a different skin to speed up browsing (Miscellaneous Options).
There's a default middle ground, individual options for more and less and some automated guidance. Staff can PM you in case your signature doesn't follow the limits. Signatures containing unsuitable content will be removed.