Data Merge function "Remove Blank Lines for Empty Fields" deletes the wrong paragraph
Version of Adobe InDesign, InCopy or InDesign Server
Adobe InDesign 15.0.1
macOS High Sierra 10.13.6
iMac 27 Zoll End 2012
Steps to reproduce the issues
See also attached video
Open Document "02VKLeerzeilenTEMPEnde.indd"
Open Data-Merge Panel
Generate a merged document with click on the button
Uncheck "Remove Blank Lines for Empty Fields" in Content Placement Options
Repeat Step 3 this time Check "Remove Blank Lines for Empty Fields" in Content Placement Options
Put the documents side by side
Activate "Show Style override" in the paragraph panel
Jump to page 2
On the left side (Merged Document, Blank line intact) you can see the 2 markers followed by a paragraph symbol
On the right side (Merged Document, Blank line removed) you can see that the 2 markers with paragraph symbol moved 1 line up behind the 7 and the other paragraph symbol is deleted
Everything is o.k. because the paragraph style (07padresse) of the line "Mobile" and the deleted "Blank line" are the same
Jump to page 3
On the left side you can see the 2 markers followed by a paragraph symbol
On the right side (Merged Document, Blank line removed) you can see that the 2 markers with paragraph symbol moved 1 line up and the other paragraph symbol (blue highlighted on the left side) is deleted BUT this time the paragraph style of these 2 paragraph are NOT the same! The result is a bigger gap between the two sentence "Frau Marie…" and Tel: 012…" on the right then it should be as you can see on the left
The Blank line (2 markers and paragraph symbol) should be deleted/removed
Instead of the Blank line (2 markers and paragraph symbol) the paragraph symbol before that (blue highlighted on the left side) is removed AND the remaining paragraph also picks up the paragraph style from the "Blank line" (if there were text in my example you could see that as well)
You can generate a merged document with Blank lines and delete/remove them with Find/Change
Find > (markers) + paragraph symbol = <FEFF><FEFF>^p
Change > to nothing
This way everything stays intact!
Test file, screenshot, video or GIF capturing the issue (optional)
Video and sample files attached
This issue has been fixed in the latest update of InDesign 2022 - version 17.3
Please update to this latest version of InDesign using Creative Cloud Desktop Application to get the fix.
Tim Gouder commented
Here you can finde the demo files I used > https://seinundhaben-my.sharepoint.com/:u:/g/personal/gouder_sein-und-haben_de/EXDXFsStItRIsozHOdv85osBx6LTpAV2ozFEnYanscXJuQ?e=xXap96
Tim Gouder commented
This BUG-Report is also facing the issue > https://indesign.uservoice.com/forums/601180-adobe-indesign-bugs/suggestions/37576366-removing-blank-lines-from-data-merge-resets-the-pa
Stuart Webster commented
Thats correct it doesn't work in iD CC 2018
Mark Rudge commented
solution is the veriable data heading can not have any spaces in it.
When you make it one word it will fix the problem.
I have done this with 100% success
I figured it out, I think! For me, I had to change the shift enter "soft returns" returns at the end of each line to a regular hard carriage return - then it worked!
Remove blank lines is not working for me either, and it's so frustrating. I hope Adobe fixes this soon. I've tried hard returns and soft returns and every merge hack I can think of but ... alas. No luck.
Leo Duffy commented
I've only begun using InDesign's Data merge function but have considerable experience in databases. The 'Remove Blank Lines for Empty Fields does not seem to work in CC2018. In most cases it is putting a blank space in the field, even though there is no space in the data file.
Our work around is a series of find and replace runs on the merged file.
Find Return Space Return (^p ^p) and Replace with Return (^p) - gets rid of double returns with a leading space on the 2nd line.
Find return space (^p ) and replace with return (^p) - gets rid of a leading space on the 2nd line.
Find return return (^p^p) and replace with return (^p) - gets rid of double returns.
This is version 14.0.2 of InDesign for the mac
For example, in a business card, some employees have a direct and mobile phone number, some employees only have a direct phone number. If there is a "Direct" paragraph style and a "Mobile" paragraph style, on a record where there isn't a Mobile number, after previewing the next record with both numbers the "Direct" paragraph style is now applied to the Mobile number.
The data merge should retain the paragraph styles based on the placeholders, not the previewed data.
Images I have attached:
1: placeholder view showing Direct style
2: placeholder view showing Mobile style
3: preview view showing record without mobile number
4: preview view showing next record with mobile number (both lines have "O:" instead of top have "O:" and bottom having "M:").
See https://indesignsecrets.com/data-merge-remove-unwanted-lines.php for a better description of the problem.
Hope that helps describe the issue.
My 2 cents, check to make sure the line that is linked in the artwork has a hard return before it. Soft returns (shift+enter) don't trigger the remove line feature. That trips me up all the time.
Kathy Reece commented
As you can see in my post, I have the Remove Blank Lines checked. It is not a blank row in the CSV file, it's a blank column
Kathy Reece commented
InDesign CC2018 English latest update. Since the update when data merging from a CSV file blank lines are not deleted. Yes, Remove Blank Lines is checked in the options.
Cordula Hofacker commented
Obviously, the "remove blank lines for empty fields" is not working in the current german version of InDesign CC 18.104.22.168.