Chapter 13. Collaborating

It is unusual never to show a Word document to anyone else. Many of us pass Word documents around so that others can collaborate on and review them. This chapter covers the major Word tools for collaborating with multiple users on a document. These include:

Track Changes

This feature allows you to visibly keep track of each author’s revisions within a document. Word automatically marks each author’s edits with colored text. In addition, whenever you point to a marked change, a ScreenTip pops up to let you know the author and date.


These annotate a document with notes that don’t really belong in the document text itself.


This is a separate program that lets users collaborate in real time using tools such as chat, voice, video, and a shared whiteboard.

Web Discussions

This is a new tool that lets users who have access to a central discussion server create threaded discussions within and about a document and subscribe to documents so that they are emailed when the document changes.

Tracking Changes

Word’s Track Changes feature is one that many people find confusing. In truth, I find the feature itself pretty straightforward. Part of what makes it seem complicated is that there are several different ways to get at it in the Word interface.

Here is what Track Changes basically does:

  1. When Track Changes is turned on, Word marks any changes made to the document in a different color for each author that makes changes.

  2. You can then review the ...

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