The use of the presidential seal is not an inappropriate use of an icon in the context of their placement and function in the presidential series box. @Graham11: Here is why:
The Manual of Style for the use of icons states the guidelines by which their use is appropriate in the wikipedia context. It defines an icon as "any small images, including logos, crests, coats of arms, seals and flags." The seal of the U.S. president certainly falls under this definition.
1.Guideline: "Icons should not be used in the article body, as in, "... and after her novel was published, Jackson moved to Bristol, England, in April 2004." This breaks up the continuity of the text, distracting the reader (example)."
For this criterion, use of the seal is appropriate. There is no body as this is a navigational context containing neither prose, definition, nor description, only links. The nature of a series box precludes violation of this criterion.
Summary: In a category of usage in general prose, application of the seal is not inappropriate.
2.Guideline: "Icons should serve an encyclopedic purpose and not merely be decorative. They should provide additional useful information on the article subject, serve as visual cues that aid the reader's comprehension, or improve navigation. Icons should not be added only because they look good: one reader's harmless decoration may be another reader's distraction. An icon is purely decorative if it does not improve comprehension of the article subject and serves no navigational function."
In this respect, use of the presidential seal, as applied in the general standard of relevant series boxes, is satisfactory. Because the series box appears not simply on the individual's biography, but on articles related to events, legislation, speeches, world affairs, etc., the visual (and "alt") component of the seal gives the reader (on a non-mobile platform, naturally) an idea of why that series box is there and why the individual it is dedicated to is relevant to such subjects. Not everybody may know a person as/is/was POTUS, especially extra-American readers, and the seal, which represents the office, indicates that the individual is or was in fact, President of the United States.
The use of the seal additionally serves a navigational function. When incorporated in the general standard of design of the presidential series box, whose aesthetic appearance is uniform and non-partisan, it serves not only as a visual (or otherwise "alt"-ed) indicator of the office , but when clicked upon it is not a redirect to the commons file but rather to the article on the topic of the office of President of the United States. It serves as the only link on the series box to an article of extreme relevance in a series about a president and presidents in their general application. It is a logical and efficient placement of this redirect, and satisfies the relevant requirement for its usage.
Summary: In this category, of three major criteria laid for appropriate use of an icon: a) useful information, b) helpful visual cue c) improve navigation, the use of the seal satisfies 2/3 of those criteria, although only 1 is necessary.
3.Guideline: "Icons can represent a specific entity and should not be repurposed to represent something else, e.g. because an actually appropriate flag is not available. For example, do not abuse the flag of the United Nations to represent the entire world, as this is not an accurate application of the official flag of that international organization."
Here, the clear entity which the Seal of the President of the United States is the office of the Presidency of the United States and the person who occupies that office. It is in no way being "repurposed to represent something else".
Summary: In the category of inappropriate application with respect to its original purpose, the criterion is not violated.
By this standard, use of the seal does not clutter the box. It occurs at the end, after all text is applied, and may only be further complemented by the individual's signature, which is not an icon. Nor does the use of the seal render any redundancy, for aforementioned reasons along with its sole application.
Summary: In the category of clutter and redundancy, a sole icon occurring after all textual elements is not clutter.
5.Guideline: "Do not modify or use non-generic icons in a way that is not notably used outside of Wikipedia. See Wikipedia:OR#Original images for further clarification. One example of such a distortion is a user-modified fusing of North American flags."
This standard is clear. To begin with, the seal is neither modified nor used in a manner not used outside of Wikipedia. The seal is applied in infoboxes and lists, where relevant (and relevancy here is mentioned avove), specifically to visually (and by "alt") to represent not only the office of the Presidency, but any other offices specific to any other official seals applied in any other context. For example, in the list of Vice Presidents, the VPOTUS official seal is used to stand-in for a portrait when denoting a period of vacancy of the same.
The purpose of this rule is further clarified with an example of the North American flag modification, which is an unofficial, unsanctioned, user-created symbol which has neither official nor otherwise accurately representative qualities thereto.
Summary: In the category of distortion of icons, neither manipulation, modification, or nonstandard placement of the seal is used in the series boxes.
Any further guidelines presented by the manual of use for icons are also satisfied. The seal is not original research, and in all series boxes, the seal has (or should have) an "alt" tag for satisfaction of accessibility concerns. In summation, the aforementioned guidelines are satisfied sufficiently, and usage of the seal here is appropriate under the manual of style. Spartan7W§ 23:41, 2 September 2016 (UTC)