I often come across questions where the author uses a linked image of an equation instead of typesetting it as MathJax. Should I edit the question to typeset the equation in MathJax, comment to let the author know that the site supports MathJax?

I find equations linked as images on this site distasteful, but are they actually against policy? I didn't find any specific proscription in the help center.

  • $\begingroup$ Yes, eventually Google will improve it's indexing of non standard text. $\endgroup$
    – user176049
    Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 17:26

1 Answer 1


Yes, you should edit and/or leave a comment in these cases because

  • Images are fixed size and will display poorly in small browser windows, particularly on phones.

  • MathJax is searchable, although the search functionality is usually not all that useful.

  • MathJax provides a uniform style for typesetting, while the typesetting in images can vary wildly depending on the source.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Is there a reason apart from preferred style? For example are typeset equations searchable? $\endgroup$
    – Styg
    Commented Nov 18, 2017 at 16:08
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ @renegade_anteater Yes, they are searchable (but search doesn't work all that well, tbh). Also, I think it's less about preferred style and more about uniform style. The typesetting in images varies wildly depending on where the images are taken from, but MathJax provides a uniform style everyone can use. $\endgroup$
    – ACuriousMind Mod
    Commented Nov 18, 2017 at 16:12
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @ACuriousMind Uniformity is really helpful on mobile browsers especially I find. You never quite know when an image will load to take up a full page, or load at really low resolution so it can't be read. $\endgroup$
    – JMac
    Commented Nov 18, 2017 at 17:27

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