6 responses to “My favorite freelance technology innovation: Track Changes”

  1. Carroll Lachnit

    Great post, Michelle. I use track changes all the time–particularly when I’m working with attorney contributors to Workforce Management, who do really need to see what I’m changing in their articles.

    Track changes can be a bit of a shock to writers, though, if the editor is doing heavy, heavy revision with lots of questions and changes. The article ends up looking like a Freddy Krueger victim–red from head to toe. And it can be hard to read “through” lots of tracked changes, too. In those instances, I’ll send the writer a “clean” copy along with the redline version. Another virtue of track changes for writers is that you can see what an editor is up to. You can decide for yourself if she has really made your piece better–or just reworded it to suit her own preferences.

  2. Carissa W

    I love track changes, thanks for singing its praises! I work at a company with offices in cities all over the U.S., and they’ve been snail mailing physical proofs back and forth for our annual publication. This year I’m going to implement–and insist on!–a Track Changes policy.

    I’ve also used used a free Blogger blog for similar tracking. We have some copy that will be edited by people in 6 cities, so I post it to a blog (which they have to log into to see, it’s not public) and then each person can leave their comments and see the comments left by others.

    That way, when it comes back and their changes haven’t been made or other changes appeared, they know where it comes from without me having to email each person.

    It’s really helpful for people who aren’t used to editing and want to impart their own style on the writing. On a blog they can see that others didn’t like the things they liked, or suggested other words, etc.

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  4. Kim Priestap

    I used Word’s track changes feature about 7-8 years ago when I was working full time in the marketing department of a glass manufacturing company. It was good then. I imagine it’s even better now.