Changing appearance of the citation keys in text

With some citation styles, citation keys may appear as if those are abbreviations in parentheses and are hard to recognized as citations. Would it make sense to allow the user to control the appearance of the citation keys? (e.g., show them in different color, or different background)

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Actually, by default we show the citations as blue underlined citations in the form (Do et al. 2012). These are easy to spot in the document.

Once you format the citations they get their final form. We can’t change that because that’s how it’s printed and how it’s exported. The output would be wrong.

However, you can revert to the blue placeholders by using the sidebar add-on and clicking “Unformat”. We’ve added this function for exact this use case.

Makes sense, thanks!

Is there a way to change the way the blue placeholder looks? By formatting and unformatting citations, existing placeholders change if some the cada is changed in Paperpile (eg spelling of last name). But then if a user goes to add that same reference again, the old spelling comes up. It would be great to be able to refresh the blue placeholder data with revised data in paperpile.

Not sure how this can happen. Are you or your colleagues using the sidebar-add-on? It could be a caching issue there which only affects the placeholders because the actual citations are always generated from the latest data.

More generally, the placeholders, are only meant as temporary – well – placeholders and if you want to get the correct citations you need to format the citations.

Hi @stefan… I guess it was a caching issue. I was using the sidebar (which is needed to unformat) and had this issue. I closed the side bar and re-loaded the page. New citations use the updated info and when I opened the side-bar again, it also used the updated information.

Thanks for the tip!

It might be a good idea to put a “refresh citation placeholders” kind of option on the sidebar gear menu. This would save the user from having to format, unformat, close side bar and reload page to clear the cache in order to update the placeholder data.