How can we improve InDesign?

Make InDesign be able to import/Export comments from/to PDF

I want to be able to get the comments from PDF into InDesign so that I can easily incorporate/respond on the comments from people.

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Jesper shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →


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  • [Jongware] commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Note that a lot of the above suggestions are already available through a 3rd party plugin: DTP Tools Annotations ( This works with Acrobat *comments* but not with touchup edits (which is NOT a recommended workflow by any standard; even Acrobat Pro can barely detect what changed at what position).

  • Bart Vandeputte commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Another use case for this *kind of* functionality is translating content.

    We often design documents in 1 language that get translated afterwards in multiple languages. Currently the designer adds a new layer for each language in the indesign file and copy-paste the translations upon receipt of the translator.

    It would be a really big step forward if a translator could translate directly in a pdf and the designer could then import the translation into his indesign file on its own "language layer".

  • Bart Vandeputte commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Hi Javed, thx for replying!

    Imo the bare minimum functionality should cater a 1-designer + 1-editor flow:

    1. Designer finishes design, exports to pdf and puts it to some acrobat-in-the-cloud edition which is preferably freely available (sometimes our editors/clients do not have inCopy/acrobat Pro/...)
    2. Client receives link to pdf, adds text corrections AND notes (as pdf comments or similar) to that pdf
    3. Client contacts designer that the pdf is corrected
    4. Designer can import each text correction 1-by-1 back into his source indesign file. Notes are not imported.
    5. Designer checks each note (typically design / image issues) and solves it
    6. Designer exports new pdf
    6.1. Back to 1 to let editors check again.
    6.2. When all ok -> designer exports pdf for printer company

    This would already save a lot of time instead of figuring out what is changed and copy-pasting it back into indesign.

    Nevertheless in reality we have a multiple-designer + multiple-editor workflow. We send pdf's to each of the editors which add pdf-comments to them via acrobat reader.
    This means that the designer has extra work to consolidate all changes first before actually incorporating them back into indesign. This often also results in conflicting corrections which results in a lot of overhead communication between designer/editor instead of editor/editor.

    I wouldn't mind getting this functionality via PDF Document Cloud or another paid for solution (preferably via the designer's subscription), but then we should be able to give a client/editor "free" access to a pdf without him having a full-blown PDF Document Cloud subscription for adding the corrections/annotations. Most of our clients never use it for anything more then "helping us" centralizing the comments anyway.

  • Admin[Deleted User] (Admin, Adobe InDesign) commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Hi all, thanks for making/upvoting this suggestion.

    What would really help is if you can describe the workflow from beginning to end, this way we may be better able to understand the situation. The kind of description I am looking for is like:
    1. Design completed by the designer
    2. Sent to the client
    3. Client makes changes in the PDF itself and sends it across to us

    Other steps could be, How you incorporate those changes, typically is it just one reviewer or are they multiple, are your clients/reviewers OK using PDF Document cloud, if no, why not.

    Anything else that you feel will help us understand these problems better.


  • Steve Edwards commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I totally agree with this. We have a number of clients that decide not to comment on a PDF but to make the changes themselves. Then the original InDesign file is out of sync with what they've done and we have to go through and copy and paste everything again to make sure we've captured the changes. Especially when the customer doesn't remember what they've changed (that happens a lot!)

  • Bart Vandeputte commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Currently we have 3 ways of dealing with text corrections coming from the client:

    1. PDF comments via acrobat reader, then the designer adds each correction 1-by-1 to the indesign file, re-exports and delivers back to client.
    2. Incopy; takes the correction flow back to the client/copywriter but not all our customers have incopy :-(
    3. User updates his pdf via Acrobat DC (can do multiple times), but then the designer doesn't know what has been changed and when he has to do "major" changes that can't be done via Acrobat DC you have basically different versions floating around which nobody knows which is the latest :-(

    I would like to see some way to combine 2 & 3 in an invisible way. Some kind of API which keeps tracks of what has been changed via Acrobat DC and an easy way to "import" those changes into indesign before the designer has to do major updates.

    Imho that would really improve the correction-workflow AND experience!!

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