Show or Hide Comments in Microsoft Word Documents

Article by: Avantix Learning Team | Updated October 16, 2020

Applies to: Microsoft® Word® 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019 or 365 (Windows)

You can show and hide comments using the Review tab in the Ribbon in Microsoft Word. If you add comments in a Word document, they will appear in a markup area on the right side of pages by default. If you want to show or hide comments, you’ll need to control the display of markup. Keep in mind that comments that are hidden could be displayed by a colleague or client.

The markup area appears in Print Layout View (the default view in Word) whenever a document includes comments and its appearance can be controlled using settings on the Review tab in the Ribbon. The default markup is set to Simple Markup with comments displayed. If the markup area is not appearing on the right, click Show Comments in the Comments group. Tracked changes also appear in the markup area.

In this article, we’re assuming that the default markup options are being used (although you can change the display of markup using Track Changes Options).

Recommended article: How to Add or Remove Page Breaks in Microsoft Word

Hiding comments using Display for Review

To hide comments in the markup area using Display for Review:

  1. Click the Review tab in the Ribbon.
  2. In the Tracking group, click Display for Review. A drop-down menu appears.
  3. Select No Markup or Original to hide the markup area, including comments.

The following  drop-down menu appears when you click Disiplay for Review:

Hide or show comments in Word using Display for Review drop-down menu.

When you click Display for Review, you have the following options:

  • Simple Markup which displays the markup area with comments and revisions. If you select Simple Markup and then click Show Comments in the Comments group, the markup area appears or disappears (if there are no tracked changes). If no markup area appears on the right, comments appear as speech bubbles that you can click to display the comment.
  • All Markup which displays the markup area with all comments or revisions as well as lines to their locations in the text.
  • No Markup which hides the markup area so that comments and revisions are hidden.
  • Original which hides the markup area as well as any revisions made to the document. In regard to comments, this option is the same as No Markup.

In the followiong example, Simple Markup is selected as well as Show Comments in the Comments group (Print Layout View in Word 365):

Word document with Simple Markup and Show Comments on.

In the next example, Simple Markup is selected and Show Comments is not selected  in the Comments group (Print Layout View in Word 365):

Comments displayed as speech bubbles in a Word document.

Comments appear in different ways depending on the selected view. Typically, you would change views using the View tab in the Ribbon. If you select Draft View, comments appear as the initials of the reviewer with square brackets and are highlighted with a background color. You can position the mouse pointer on the text to view the comment in a pop-up bubble. In Read Mode View, comments appear as speech bubbles to the right of the text. Simpy click a bubble to view a comment.

Hiding comments using Show Markup

To hide comments using Show Markup:

  1. Click the Review tab in the Ribbon.
  2. In the Tracking group, click Show Markup. A drop-down menu appears.
  3. Select Comments to deselect comments.

The Show Markup drop-down menu includes the following options:

Show or hide comments in Word using the Show Markup drop-down menu.

Showing comments

To show comments in the markup area:

  1. Click the Review tab in the Ribbon.
  2. In the Tracking group, click Display for Review. A drop-down menu appears.
  3. Select Simple Markup or All Markup to show the markup area, including comments.
  4. Click Show Markup. A drop-down menu appears.
  5. Ensure Comments is selected.
  6. If you selected Simple Markup, in the Comments group, select Show Comments in the Comments group.

Viewing all comments using the Reviewing Pane

To view all comments regardless of view:

  1. Click the Review tab in the Ribbon.
  2. In the Tracking group, click Reviewing Pane. A drop-down menu appears.
  3. Select either the horizontal or vertical display. The Reviewing Pane  appears and will displays comments and revisions.

You can click the Reviewng Pane button again in the Ribbon to hide the Reviewing Pane.

Hiding markup is not the same as accepting changes or deleting comments. You should accept or reject changes and delete comments in your Word document before you send out the final version.

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Summary
How to Hide Comments in Word (or Display Them)
Article Name
How to Hide Comments in Word (or Display Them)
Description
You can show and hide comments using the Review tab in the Ribbon in Microsoft Word. If you add comments in a Word document, they will appear in a markup area on the right side of pages by default. If you want to show or hide comments, you'll need to control the display of markup.
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Avantix Learning

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