Pasted Bulleted Text from Google Docs Disappears Unexpectedly

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03-17-2022 01:30 PM
PeterKnoop
MVP Regular Contributor

I suspect this is a bug and have a case with Esri support for it, however, I thought I would share it as an FYI with the community.

If you create bulleted text in a Google Doc, copy it, and then paste it into a text block in StoryMaps, it appears correctly as bulleted text. If you then Preview, Publish, or otherwise cause the story to reload, then that text disappears. If you exit Preview, or return to Editing from Publishing, then the text is still gone, and cannot be recovered.

Workaround: after pasting the text into StoryMaps, immediately select it, and explicitly set its formatting to "Bulleted List".

5 Replies
OwenGeo
Esri Notable Contributor

@PeterKnoop - Thanks for reporting this and providing detailed information about how and when the issue occurs. I don't believe we've seen this, but we'll look into it.

Owen Evans
Lead Product Engineer | StoryMaps
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OwenGeo
Esri Notable Contributor

We looked into this issue and unfortunately Google Docs outputs invalid HTML, which makes it very difficult to predict and interpret. 😞 We don't have a good solution at this time, but we will keep looking into it.

The workaround posted above is the best one to use for now. Additionally, for anyone who has a longer Google Doc and they want to bring in the entire thing into a story you can download the doc as a TXT file and then copy the text from the TXT file into the story builder. Formatting will need to be redone in this case, but all the text should come in.

Owen Evans
Lead Product Engineer | StoryMaps
PeterKnoop
MVP Regular Contributor

As a follow-up for those potentially encountering similar issues, it now appears to be a much broader problem than just with bulleted lists.

Performing a standard cut-and-paste of more than one paragraph of text -- of any format -- from Google Docs will generally result in invalid HTML being pasted into StoryMaps. The end result being that some or all of the pasted text will be lost eventually when you Preview or Publish your story, or close your browser tab.

In addition to @OwenGeo's suggested workaround of saving your Google Doc as a text file, you can also use "paste-and-match-style" or "paste-as-plain-text", rather than the standard "paste" (i.e., shift-control-V/command-control-V rather than control-V/command-V.) Following this workflow, as with the downloaded text file, results in the loss of any formatting the text originally had in your Google Doc. So you will need to reformat the text once it is safely in StoryMaps.

AmyWork3
New Contributor III

We are encountering this issue as well. A user copied text from a Google Doc and pasted into the StoryMap. The StoryMap appeared to have saved the text, but when it was published, the text was lost. We haven't tried the "paste-as-plain-text" as mentioned above, but we did save the Google Doc out as a .txt and then copied/pasted from there.

PatriciaCarbajales-Dale
New Contributor III

We also have the same problem

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