Track Changes icon in Ribbon changed from switch to dropdown (with no update)

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I am using Office 365 on a Mac, and use the Track Changes function in Word a lot. Yesterday, the Track Changes icon in the Ribbon changed from the usual green "switch" icon to a page-and-pen icon with a drop-down menu. The drop down options are "For Everyone" or "Just Me". There was no update of the software -- I just noticed that it had changed.


At same time, the Track Changes switch icon disappeared from the Quick Access toolbar, where I had placed it for convenience. Many of my ribbon settings were reset, too.


Does anyone know why/how this might have happened, and how I can restore the switch icon for Track Changes (and get it back in the Quick Access toolbar too)? Thank you.

9 Replies

@David_E_16 I just discovered the same thing and it's driving me crazy. Have you found an answer?

This change is INFURIATING:
As a proofreader you need to know that the changes are being tracked. The green slider button did just that, although crazily even that was greyed out with one change to the ribbon.
PLEASE PLEASE restore the button.
EDITOR is also a terrible change.
Everything functioned fine before.
Terrible time-wasting changes.

I agree.  I don't know why MS would change this to feature and make it worse.



@mattproofing So I found that once you turn track changes on, it appears at the bottom of the screen as "Track Changes on" and you toggle it from there. Still prefer it at the top with the green and red button.

This change is, UTTERLY INFURIATING. "For everyone" or "only me" is completely irrelevant for people who are not 'collaborating' on shared documents EVER. As a professional editor, I need to maintain unitary control of a working version/master document. I also need to be able to toggle track changes on and off, because sometimes I want the changes tracked so client can see them, and sometimes, I don't (for example, closing up extra space).. Now, when I turn off track changes from the top ribbon, it also changes View, so all THE CHANGES I MADE ARE NO LONGER VISIBLE. So now turning it off is a worthless feature. Instead I have to keep tracked changes on, and then highlight and accept each change I don't want the client to see or deal with, as I go. This adds several steps and time to a process that was working PERFECTLY FINE BEFORE. When this first happened I thought something was corrupted in my Word program and I spent hours on the phone with Microsoft technicians who didn't know about this change either, and didn't get why it would be made, and ultimately thought there was something wrong with Word and that I should uninstall and reinstall it, and/or my Mac user profile was corrupted, so then I spent tons of time creating a new user profile only to find out that this was the 'new Word' and actually intentional. Meanwhile you add this patronizing 'Editor' button to grade me on my 'concision' and 'grammar' as if your algorithm, functions better than my brain, on a skill I've cultivated for 35 years. In fact often these automated 'grammar' things are ridiculously wrong which was annoying enough when limited to spellcheck. WhY do you keep 'fixing' what isn't broken? This program is becoming less and less useful for editing professionals. Shouldn't that be a signal that something is wrong with these "improvements"?
I get no "track changes' toggle at the bottom of my screen. Perhaps because I'm working in Word for Mac?
I'm in Word for Mac too. This is what I see: /Users/elaynewellsharmer/Desktop/Screen Shot 2022-02-28 at 11.48.01 AM.png
(Sorry, not sure why you get a link instead of a picture.) I went to Tools-->Track Changes-->Highlight Changes and checked all boxes. Then it should show up at the bottom. Amen to everything you said above!! I'm an editor too and this is driving me nuts, because I work with Markup off (hate seeing all the red), and when I turn off Track Changes (like you said, to delete a space) and then turn it back on, it changes the view so then I have to go back in and click on Markup. Argh!!!


I've been completely aghast at this too, but I think I found the solution (at least to the problem as it affected me; possibly I've misunderstood other ppl's predicaments).


Previously, that nice green button-toggle was accessed by clicking in the toolbar on the dropdown icon "track changes" (picture of a pencil aslant a piece of paper). The green button you slid to turn on/off tracking was among a few dropdown options there.


Now THE ENTIRE ICON BUTTON has become, in effect, the green toggle. If you click it once, the background to the tiny picture of paper and pencil goes dark grey; this means tracking is on. Click it again and it returns to the same light grey as the rest of the toolbar; now tracking is off.


I hope that solves problems for some. Upside is it's one less click; downside is light/dark grey visually much less salient than the nice green button.



Hi Lisa -


I'm on Mac too and when I installed Office 365 I had the toggle button at top. When I restarted my machine it was replaced by the hopeless pen/paper icon. So much worse. But you can get the 'track changes on/off' option at base of screen. Go to bottom of screen - the part where you get page count, word number details etc shown - right click - then you'll get a pop-up menu of options to be shown in that part of the screen - among which is 'track changes.'