Google Docs has become a popular word-processing tool for collaboration. Multiple users can work on the same document, provided that they have the right permission. For example, if three users have permission to edit a document, they can simultaneously edit that document and watch each other working. Viewers can also watch others working on a document.
This can be annoying for some users. One way around this is to share Google Docs with other users anonymously. This means other users won’t see them working on that document, and the editor’s identity won’t be revealed.
This guide will show you how to share Google Docs anonymously in easy steps.
Why Do You Need to Share Google Docs Anonymously?
When you work on a Google Docs file, your identity is fetched from your Google account. You might have noticed the prompt asking you to sign in to your Google account to edit your document. When you sign in to your account, your document shows user information in the top-right corner of the document.
So other users can see who is editing your document. If this hampers your privacy and you don’t want to reveal your identity while working on a Google Docs file, you can change the share settings to become anonymous.
How to Share Google Docs Anonymously: Step-by-Step Guide
The main trick here is to sign out of your Google account so that other users can’t see your name and profile picture. You might lose access to your document if you don’t set up the share settings before signing out of your Google account. Here is a detailed guide on how to share Google Docs anonymously. Make sure you follow along.
Step 1: After opening a Google Docs file, you will find the Share button in the top right corner of the document. There should be a lock icon beside the text, which indicates the document is private to you. Click on the Share button.
Step 2: On the Share window, you have the option to add people and groups to your document, but that will reveal your identity. You need to click the drop-down arrow beside the Restricted option.
Step 3: From the drop-down menu, select Anyone with the link. This means anyone on the internet having the link can access the document.
Step 3: Now, you need to set the permission level. You will see another drop-down arrow on the right side of the window. Click on that arrow.
Step 4: You can select the role of the user from the menu. There are three roles, such as Viewer, Commenter, and Editor. If you set the role as Viewer, the user won’t be able to edit the document or comment on it. With the role of a commenter, the user will be able to view the document and comment on it but can’t edit the document. If you select Editor, the user having the link will have full access to edit the document. You need to select Editor here, as you will be sharing the document anonymously.
Step 5: The shareable link to the document is now ready. You need to click the Copy link button on the bottom left corner of the pop-up window. After that, click the Done button in the bottom right corner.
Step 6: After you have copied that link, you need to sign out of your Google account. This will alter your browser setup and preferences, we recommend avoiding the process. Instead, you can open an incognito window on your browser. We are using the Google Chrome browser. Here, you need to click the three vertical dots in the top right corner and select the New Incognito window. Alternatively, you can press Ctrl + Shift + N to open a new incognito window.
Step 7: Paste the copied link from the document to the address bar of the new incognito window. Hit Enter to go to the document. If everything is correct, the shared document will appear on the browser.
Step 8: As no one is signed into the Google account on the incognito window, the user will now be shown as an anonymous character. This usually shows the icon of anonymous animals, which is the tiger in this case.
So, you have successfully shared Google Docs anonymously!
How to Stop Sharing Google Docs Anonymously
If you have already shared a Google Docs file anonymously, but now want to revoke access to that document, that is also possible.
You just need to tweak the share settings. To do this, click the Share button in the top right corner. Click on the drop-down menu on the left and select the Restricted option from there.
If you want to revoke the editing access only, you can click the drop-down menu on the right and select the role as a Viewer or Commenter.
We often share Google Docs with colleagues or friends. But many of us might like to be watched by other users while editing the document. We created this guide to show you how to share Google Docs anonymously.
You just need to change the share settings by clicking the Share button. Then, you can copy the shareable link and paste it to a new incognito window to access the document without signing into your Google account. As a result, nobody will see your name or profile picture.