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Editing & Re-Publishing Instructables Answered

I've been getting a lot of subscription emails lately and they are for the same Instructables. (NO, not a bug). 

I'm making the assumption that members are editing their Instructables and instead of just saving it, they are going through the publishing step again.... which sends yet another email about the same ible.

While I understand the need for re-publishing (say you made a significant update after a few months) so I'm not suggesting that the publishing step be removed after ibles are already published, BUT there must be a better way.

Perhaps there should be a NOTE on the publishing step saying "You're Instructable has already been published. It's unnecessary to re-publish". OR disable re-publishing within 24 hours of the last time the step was completed?

Its almost getting to the point that I want to turn off notifications completely for Instructables, because I don't want an email about the same ible 6 times in one day...

Thoughts anyone?


How to Edit an Instructable without Re-Publishing:

1. Open your Instructable, make your changes and click the "Save" button.
2. Then hover your mouse over "More" (to the right of the "edit", "publish" & "share" tabs) and click on "Full Preview".  
3. If you need to go back, click "edit" from the "Author Options".

As long as you've clicked on the "Save" button there is NO NEED to Re-Publish for edits to take effect.
Re-Publishing is unnecessary and just resends everyone who subscribes to you another subscription email.


I mentioned this to our development team recently, and they're working on a new system, wherein a "View" button or something will be a part of the editing page.
Right now, there's no easy way to see what changes you've made to an Instructable. The default is to hit the Publish button again. Which is super irritating! So yeah, they've been informed, and it will take a little while, as there's more to do than bodies to do it right now. I hope that helps a little!

Thanks for letting me know. I'm glad they're at least looking into it.

As far as the easiest way to see your changes... after you've saved your edits, hover your mouse over "More" (to the right of the "edit", "publish" & "share" tabs) and click on "Full Preview". It will open up the ible in the version you just saved. If you need to go back, click "edit" from the "Author Options".

Its not the most obvious, or straightforward method, (hence the suggestion for a prominently displayed "Preview" button), but it does work nonetheless and doesn't require re-publishing. :-)

I am guilty of this! Though I only click the save button these day, it wasn't clear that saving was going to update the published instructable, rather than just saving the edits until it's published.

it wasn't clear that saving was going to update the published instructable

Exactly. Methinks there is room for improvement here.

I agree... the current options don't make it clear what should (and shouldn't) be done. It couldn't hurt (imo) to fix this... plus they'd probably save some $ on bandwidth, not having to send out unnecessary emails...


5 years ago

I live with it :)

It seems to get worse though... (I follow almost twice as many members as you do... Maybe I need to do some housekeeping).

I select by interaction and early brilliance.
How do you decide to follow ?

It's part of the editing process, that you re-publish after editing (I'm going to guess that a lot of your emails related to my recent posts - damned proof-reading mistakes!).

Normally, most people do not edit their projects as often as I just did (fourteen pages of small print - my brain hurts), and most edits are improvements or fixes (maybe a supplier link is broken, or they took a better photo, rather than simple wording changes), so (IMO), the new notifications are a good thing, because followers can then go back and see the author's best work.

Oh - sudden thought - are the projects mainly bird related? I've just been back through several hundred projects to reclassify them into the new Birding Channel, and I don't know if that kind of change triggers an email.

Its not about any one member or Instructable (so please don't think you were the motivation for me posting this). There are MANY members who are making multiple edits and re-publishing after every little change, yet there doesn't appear to be any significant difference in what was there before. It's those cases that I don't agree with you that "its part of the editing process". Members can easily correct a simple spelling mistake without re-publishing and it being a full email blast to all their subscribers.

So, IDK, maybe its just me and this doesn't bother other members, in which case I know I can either un-follow members or opt-out of subscribers emails (but I'd rather not if I don't have to). :-)

I see what you mean.

I'll bring it up with HQ, but I'm fairly sure it would be a low-priority change (unless it's really easy and it's just nobody thought to do it before - this coding stuff is all black magic to me.)

The simplest solution (imo), is to create a note for the publish tab that only appears after the Instructable is published that just makes the author aware that re-publishing should only be done for significant changes (and not just spelling mistakes), as a notice is sent each time to their subscribers.

It might not solve all of life's problems, but in many cases, I think members just aren't aware that saving their changes is enough. I know that some members think you have to re-publish in order for the edits to appear...


Right, I've worked it out - if you make a change to your project, all you need to do is hit "save", not publish.

However, the issue is that there is no indication that the published version has changed when you hit save, but there is when you hit publish.

Ergo, folk (including me) have been hitting save, and then publish, which generates the emails that have been flooding your inbox.

As things stand, if you make a minor update, once you hit save, you should then navigate away from the project rather than hitting publish.

For the future, I've suggested some solutions to the team.

(Progress? All I did was discover a deep personal ignorance of the way this site works...)

lol... I was trying not to call attention to your epiphany... but if it makes you feel better, there's a few staffers that haven't figured this out either. :-)

Though it doesn't really fix it, you can make it so you only get emails when someone updates once a day. It will decrease the amount of times you are told things have been updated. If you already knew about this then nevermind :)

I appreciate the suggestion. I don't mind when they come "as they are published" as long as its not the same one re-published a ridiculous amount of times.

(I think I've just followed a few too many newbies that think you have to re-publish in order for the changes to appear). :-X