6 Replies Latest reply on Jul 22, 2013 10:55 PM by Asahl

    Is ID exported PDF considered non-editable? (In the case of view&print embedding permission fonts)

    Asahl

      Hiya!

       

      I am a graphic designer and I use InDesign 5.5.

      I have a question about font embedding when using the InDesign's export as a PDF in "print" format feature.

       

      Many fonts allow embedding into digital documents only for the purpose of viewing and printing.

      In addition to this the font EULA's mention that the embedded font may not be used to edit the document.

       

      Is it possible to create a non-editable PDF with embedded fonts?

      Is choosing PDF export option "print" the key here, or embedding the fonts as a subset?

      Isn't it still possible to edit PDF in Acrobat with touch up text tool? Or use some third party editing program?

       

      OR Is a PDF file - with fonts embedded as a subset -  non-editable as such, or at least considered to be non-editable enough?

      Or is it just that the file doesn't really have to be non-editable, but it must not be edited...

      How do I ensure that? Do I even need to ensure that?

       

      Whole thing seems so controversial.

      Hope someone can shed some light into this!!!

      -Ahlax-

        • 1. Re: Is ID exported PDF considered non-editable? (In the case of view&print embedding permission fonts)
          Dov Isaacs Adobe Employee

          Ahlax,

           

          There are several separate concepts here.

           

          First, PDF is really a final form file format. It wasn't designed as an editable format for layout such as InDesign's .indd format ane Word's .doc and .docx formats. Although PDF files may be tagged with contextual metadata, typical content of PDF files contains no context in terms of words, sentences, paragraphs, columns, etc. It is simply graphical objects including text fragments, vector artwork, and raster images at a particular place on a page with specified graphical attributes (color, transparency, etc.). As such producing a full PDF file editor first requires definition of what it actually means to edit such a file given the characteristics of PDF files.

           

          That having been said, Acrobat and various third party plugins to Acrobat as well as third party applications provide some degree of editability for PDF files, recognizing that such edits are definitely not at the abstractual level that you get with InDesign. You can “touch-up” text, but doing a re-layout is effectively impossible. In most cases, it is better (in terms of time, effort, and resultant quality) to go back to the source document, make the changes there, and then regenerate the PDF.

           

          Fonts are a totally separate issue. Adobe products will not embed any font into a PDF file unless the font allows for at least preview and print embedding. For PDF forms, Acrobat requires a font to allow editability embedding. However for text touch-up and other edits, Acrobat never uses the embedded font. Such edits are only allowed if the user has the same font actually installed on their system.

           

          In terms of forcing a PDF file to be totally non-editable, that is done by applying security to the file when you export the PDF file from InDesign (the Security tab) or in Acrobat Pro after PDF creation (go to the Security tab under Document Properties (Ctrl-D) to set such security).

           

                    - Dov

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Is ID exported PDF considered non-editable? (In the case of view&print embedding permission fonts)
            Asahl Level 1

            Thank you for your kind and swift answer Mr. Isaacs.

             

            As to summarize, when talking about digital documents the editability of a PDF is not an issue, because PDF is not considered to be an editable file format.

            So creating and distributing PDF files with Adobe products (e.g. InDesign) is all right, even when using preview and print only embeddable fonts, whose license won't allow editing the document text in digital documents.

             

            Would this be a good general interpretation?

            • 3. Re: Is ID exported PDF considered non-editable? (In the case of view&print embedding permission fonts)
              Dov Isaacs Adobe Employee

              Almost.

               

              If you really want to prevent any changes, use the security feature to lock the PDF file against changes. Even if an embedded font is Preview and Print embedding, if a recipient has the font installed on their system, they can indeed use the text touch-up tool.

               

                        - Dov

              1 person found this helpful
              • 4. Re: Is ID exported PDF considered non-editable? (In the case of view&print embedding permission fonts)
                Jeffrey_Smith Most Valuable Participant

                I am not trying to come off negative here, but the bottom line... there is absolutely nothing you do for 100% protection. My advice is to have a good faith relationship with your customers, vendors and anyone who comes in contact with your files... and hopefully they will share the same philosophy.

                1 person found this helpful
                • 5. Re: Is ID exported PDF considered non-editable? (In the case of view&print embedding permission fonts)
                  Dov Isaacs Adobe Employee

                  No argument about that advice, but that having been said, using PDF's simple protection capability keeps the honest, honest and requires more than passive efforts to allow content modification.

                   

                            - Dov

                  1 person found this helpful