Is it possible to review changes made by collaborators to a document before publishing them on Google Docs?

By November 15, 2013Uncategorized

Answer by Cameron Crest:

You can review changes to a Google doc before publishing a couple of ways depending on how you are publishing.

Assuming you are publishing documents in shared folders:

You can accomplish this by using folders and the built in revision history.

  • Create a folder to keep documents in while they are being worked on which only your collaborators can see.
  • Create new documents in this folder for your collaboration team to tackle.
  • Use the built in document discussion @ system to notify and issue orders or converse about the work being done. Mark each order or comment as resolved as they are tackled.
  • View the revision history to see who has done what, if there is an question.
  • Move the document to its published folder where end users can see it.
  • For document updates, create a copy of the original document in your collaboration folder and replace the published version when the update is done by your team.

Assuming you are updating documents published to the web:

  • Go to: File > Publish to the web,  and uncheck: "Automatically publish when changes are made". 
  • Make your updates to the document with collaborators.
  • Use revision history and the built in discussion system as necessary.
  • When all updates are done, Go to: File > Publish to the web,  and stop and start publishing again to update the document on the web.
  • Go to: File > Publish to the web,  and start publishing.

These are very workable methods

The revision history keeps track of all changes made to a document and even shows you who made the change, what they did and when.  It even lets you revert a document to an earlier state.  But not only that, you can then revert it back to its future (current) state.  This has been a solution for me on MANY occasions where a collaborator deleted a whole page by accident and it went unnoticed by everybody for a long period.  Simply reverting back to when the page existed isn't a solution when so much more work was done after the page when missing.  I also find myself jumping back and fourth in time with spreadsheets to get formulas in cells that went missing who-knows-when, snatching them up at an earlier time when they existed and pasting them back into the future. 🙂

The discussions system allows you to highlight a word or more, right click and comment on the highlighted area.  Adding am "@" in the text of your comment will pull up a list of collaborators to choose from and add to your comment.  The chosen collaborator will be sent a notification via email with a link to open the document and participate in the discussion.

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