LibreOffice makes collaborating on documents quite simple. But if you want to differentiate the comments you add from those of others, there is a way to do it.
As a writer, I collaborate with many people on documents, whether they’re proofreaders, editors, or layout artists. When I do this, I like to make sure my comments stand out, so that there is no confusion as to who made an initial comment or a response to a comment.
By default, LibreOffice uses a different background color for each commenter. But sometimes that’s not enough. I’ve also encountered a few cases where the background color of someone else’s comment ended up matching my own, leading to general confusion. To make matters worse, if someone hasn’t added their name to the section Identity data of LibreOffice in the Optionsthings can get even more confusing.
That’s why I customize the formatting of my comments, so everyone knows exactly who is commenting.
Let me show you how to do it.
How to customize comment formatting
The only thing you will need for this functionality is the LibreOffice office suite installed on your desktop or laptop computer. Make sure you are using the latest version (220.127.116.11).
One thing to keep in mind is that when you customize the formatting, you are changing it for all comments and not just yours!
Of course, if someone else opens your document and changes the formatting of the comments, yours will be affected too. I would like the LibreOffice developers to add the ability to change comment formatting per user. Which would mean that each collaborator could act on their own comments without having to worry about changing the formatting of other users.
However, this is not an option currently. I have submitted a request for this feature, and I hope that the Document Foundation finds this request viable.
But in the meantime, let me show you how to customize comment formatting in LibreOffice.
1. Open a LibreOffice document
The first thing to do is open a LibreOffice document that contains comments that you have already added or that requires comments from you. Make sure you are the only user who has added comments to the document so far.
2. Open the formatting window
Locate or add a comment to the document. Then click the drop-down arrow in the bottom right corner of the comment. In the resulting menu, click Format all comments.
You can access the “Format All Comments” option from any comment in the document. Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET
3. Customize the formatting
In the Character Formatting window, you can change the font family, style, size, language, color, text decoration, effects, position, scale, spacing, and highlighting. You can give free rein to your imagination to make your comments stand out.
Once you have made your formatting changes, click OK to close the character formatting window. You should immediately see the appearance of your comments reflecting the attributes you changed.
You can customize a number of options for your comments. Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET
Add your name
As I mentioned earlier, one of the most important changes you can make to boost collaboration is to add your name to LibreOffice.
By completing this task, all comments will display your name, allowing collaborators to know which comment was made by you.
To add your name, open the menu Toolsand choose Options. In the section LibreOfficeclick on Identity data. Then type your first and last name, then click on OK.
You can also add your address and email address, if you wish. Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET
That’s all there is to do to make your comments in LibreOffice stand out from those of your colleagues.