ArcMap: Text element anchor points do not work

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08-23-2017 07:11 PM
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Occasional Contributor III

Anchor points for text elements are not honored and seem to ALWAYS be anchored bottom centre.

Situation:

I have 3 lines of text in one text element which are centre aligned and are positioned correctly in the template.

I'm updating this via arcpy but the behaviour can be replicated in ArcMap directly as well.

You would expect (?) that by setting the anchor point at one of the top positions, the text box would maintain its upper most position and, say if adding another line of text, this would be added to the bottom. Alternatively, if removing the 2nd and 3rd lines, the 1st line would stay in the same position.

This does not happen.

You would expect (?) that by setting the anchor point at one of the middle (up-down) positions, the text would maintain its middle most position and, say if adding another line of text, this would be added midway between bottom top. Alternatively, if removing the 2nd and 3rd lines, the 1st line would move to the position of the original 2nd line.

This does not happen.

You would expect (?) that by setting the anchor point at one of the bottom positions, the text would maintain its lower most position and, say if adding another line of text to the bottom of the list, this would cause the text box to 'grow' upwards. Alternatively, if removing the 2nd and 3rd lines, the 1st line would move to where the 3rd line was.

This DOES happen..but!:

Setting the anchor point to the bottom left, you'd expect text to then grow out to the right while the left most position would stay the same. 

This does not happen (text grows left and right)

Setting the anchor point to the bottom right, you'd expect text to then grow out to the left while the right most position would stay the same. 

This does not happen (text grows left and right)

So of all of these combinations, the only anchor point that works is bottom center (i.e. adding new lines of text, the extent will grow at the top and adding more characters will grow both left and right)

Can anyone confirm this happens/does not happen and if an ESRI employee sees this, test and file a bug report?

Currently there appears to be no way of changing multi line text so that it is added in way that's consistent with how one would write a piece of text on paper (i.e. start at top left, new text is added to the bottom and the original text does not move)

7 Replies
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New Contributor

I have the same issue, is there a solution yet?

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Esri Esteemed Contributor

Just did a test with ArcMap and it seems that you are right. It does not have the behavior one could expect from using the anchor points in ArcMap. I also tried this in ArcGIS Pro and it is working correctly there. So maybe, if possible, it would be a good thing to move to ArcGIS Pro.

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New Contributor

Thanks for checking Xander, unfortunately switching to Pro and python 3 will create some other issues.

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Esri Esteemed Contributor

It might be best to report this as a bug to Esri and see if they can correct the behavior. I've "transformed" scripts that were based on ArcMap and Python 2.7 to work with ArcGIS Pro and Python 3.4. Although the mp module is different from the mapping module, it might be good to consider the change and be ready for the feature... 

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Occasional Contributor III

Xander- what version of Pro? I just tested in 2.5.0 using normal text elements and it still displays the same issues- Text elements still don't appear to honour their anchor points.

However, if you use a Rectangle text element, anchor locations are honoured (I guess because the extent is consistent regardless of the contents whereas with text, the contents changes and ArcMap/Pro doesn't monitor the extent well through the update process).

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New Contributor III

been having the same problem here, we have some layout that was build using normal text, and all of them are not working once i updated to PRO 2.5.1

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Occasional Contributor III

The anchors are still definitely an issue in Pro 2.6. 

I was fighting with this until a saw the quick work-around here by adding a Rectangle Text element instead.  This actually works a lot better and it's easier to control the element flow.  We are using this to dynamically insert text into a print layout for the Javascript API and it's now working great!

Thanks!

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