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Posted by in FAQ: Annotate for Word (2016+)

Annotate messes up formatting on bulleted/numbered lists?

You may notice that sometimes Annotate PRO for Microsoft Word incorrectly formats bulleted/numbered text when you insert a comment from your AP Libraries.

The good news? There’s an easy fix: toggle AP to Inline rather than Comment, then insert a Word comment the way you always would, then search/browse your AP content for the right comment and Insert. You’ll find the Inline/Comment toggle at the top of the AP taskpane.

There is a little more nuance and at least one other option to consider, especially if you appreciate AP’s automatic comment insertion feature: 

If you were to highlight text, as in the screenshot at right, then use AP to insert a comment, you might end up with the screenshot below – not ideal.

This is because, to do its magic and automatically insert a comment when you click a single button (an AP favorite, for instance), our code has to copy your selected text, then bundle it with the comment, then insert the whole thing back into the Word document.

When AP re-inserts your selected text the Word document doesn’t know that it was part of a larger numbered list…and so restarts numbering.

Sigh. Once Microsoft improve the comment ‘object’ for developers like 11trees this will get better. But we’ve been waiting since 2017 (updating this article in July 2021).

A similar thing happens when you use AP to insert comments from your Library if you’re a heavy user of Track Changes – you get a lot of unintended formatting changes because of the process AP uses to save you a step and add the comment bubble for you.

There are at least two solutions:

First, instead of highlighting the entire row or a word in the row, just insert a comment at a particular cursor location. Then the numbering/bullets will be unchanged by inserting a comment through AP’s feature.

Second, flip to the toggle selector to Inline, then manually insert a Word comment, then use AP to find just the right comment from your Libraries and insert it.