Changes to citations are overwritten



Hi @stefan
I’m currently using Paperpile collaboratively with 4 colleagues and we are having issues with this referencing functionality.

We keep correcting/editing each other’s references, only for them to be reverted back to the way they were before when we click the “format citations” button. Please can you give a couple of bullet points about how it works?



Bug? All changes made in in-document list of references not saved

We keep correcting/editing each other’s references

How do you do that?

Every paper has an associated list of references (in Google Docs click: Paperpile > View all references). If you edit that version you should see it in the formatted citations/bibliography.


Hi Stefan

We are just deleting and typing into the text/google doc. Then when “update citations” is clicked, the edits are reverted back again.

Does this make sense?




So you are not talking about the meta-data but the in-text citations. Eg. you have something like that:

(King, 2002) and edit it to (as shown by King, 2002)

That will be deleted on the next update. Is this the problem?


Yes, that’s the exact problem. As well as correcting capital letters and spelling mistakes etc.




You should never edit the actual citation in the document but the meta-data of the reference in your library. For example.

You have a citation (Smit, 2012) and want to change it to (Smith, 2012). You open the reference in Paperpile and edit the author field there (see below). After that you can reformat teh citations with “Format citations” and the name will be correct.

If you want to add text to the citation you can use the prefix/postfix fields in the citation details (see below). These changes will persist even if you re-format.

Everything else you add to the citation will be lost.

Hope that helps.


Thanks Stefan. This is something we have found if not intuitive for new users of Paperpile. They can easily spend lots of time making changes, which will not be saved.




I can see how that can be confusing if you have not used other reference managers like EndNote or Mendeley before (this is the standard behaviour in pretty much every other product)
We’ll think about how we can make this clearer, at least in our documentation. Thanks!


I have this exact same problem -only there are no “advanced options” available when I use Paperpile. I can add or remove citations but not add prefix’s, etc.


@Ajna_R You need to click the blue bubble in the add/edit dialog to reveal the advanced options for the given citation.


I clicked “Edit” then hovered my mouse over one of the citations. A black dialogue popped up that said “Click for details” I clicked and. . . voila! Additional features were right there.