Reader Feedback: A Better Way to Ensure PDF Comments Print

March 25, 2008 - 2:00am ||| 0 Comments | Add new
In the last issue of DesignGeek, I described a way to ensure that any comments you add to a PDF appear on the printout, even if the person you sent the PDF to chooses "Document" (Instead of "Document and Markups") in Acrobat or Reader's Print dialog box. My way required you to "refry" the PDF by printing it to the Adobe PDF virtual printer. Doing so merges the comments into the PDF itself.

Within a couple days after sending out the issue, helpful readers e-mailed me to tell me about a better way to do this: Flatten the comments. You can do so with a Javascript, which gives you a Flatten Comments command under the File menu in Acrobat. All the readers pointed me to one of Lori DeFurio's blog posts on AcrobatUsers.com from last year, which describes the technique and has the Javascript you can download:

Ensuring that Your Comments and Stamps Print
http://www.acrobatusers.com/tutorials/2007/flattening_comments/

One of the readers who mentioned Lori's post said, "I use this trick all the time and it works great, especially the toolbar method explained at the end of the tip."

Another reader reply came from Rick Borstein, an Adobe muckety-muck (Business Development Manager specializing in the Acrobat/Legal Market) who also happens to be a long-time friend of mine here in Chicago. Rick runs a great blog called AcroLaw: Acrobat for Legal Professionals, which I subscribe to, but somehow missed a post of his where he described a whole bunch of ways to make sure comments print (one of these being the JavaScript method) :

Ensuring that PDF Comments Get Printed
http://blogs.adobe.com/acrolaw/2008/01/ensuring_the_pdf_comments_get_pr.html

I'm in awe of both Lori (who I finally got to meet at the Miami InDesign Conference a few weeks ago) and Rick, and their extremely helpful Acrobat tips they offer on their blogs. I learn a ton from both (yes, including AcroLaw, even though I'm not in the legal field — you never know when you might need to redact something!). So I'm not surprised that both of them wrote this up already. Thanks, guys.

And a tip of the hat to all you wonderful readers who clued me in to a better solution. Keep that feedback coming!

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