If you’ve created a Google Slides presentation that you want to share with others, but you want them to make a copy instead of changing the original, then you’re in luck! It’s quite easy to force users to make a copy in Google Slides. And this post shows the three steps to do it!
A word to the wise before beginning, it’s important to follow the steps in order. Otherwise, some of the follow-up steps won’t work.
Open the Google Slide you’d like to share and click on the *Share* option in the upper-right portion of the presentation screen.
When you do, a new screen will pop up. And from there, you’ll have additional options to customize your presentation’s settings.
Set your presentation’s link settings to “Anyone with the link” so others can access your presentation. This step is important. Even though we have more work to do to force a copy in Google Slides, we want to first ensure people will be able to access the presentation.
Once you change the setting to “Anyone with the link” then click the “Copy link” option. This will save a rather long unique presentation URL to your computer’s clipboard. Note: This link is specific to the Google Slides presentation you created.
Now paste the link into a document where you can make edits. You could paste the link right into whatever communication you’ll use to ultimately distribute your presentation to your audience. However, there is still one change to make that will force users to make a copy in Google Slides. So if you want to make sure you don’t send out the wrong link, it’s a good idea to past the URL into a blank document or Notes document first and then after completing Step 3, paste the final URL into the document you’ll share with others. This is what I do.
Once you save the terribly long unique presentation URL to a document where you can make changes, it’s time to customize the URL so it forces a copy in Google Slides when people access it. To do this, replace the portion of the URL ending in /edit?usp=sharing with /copy.
Once you make that switch, you can paste the updated URL ending in /copy into whatever document or communication you’ll be using to share your presentation with your audience. Now when users click the link, they’ll be prompted to save a copy in Google Slides. Your original presentation will be shareable and remain intact.
Every now and then, users will run into access issues when trying to make a copy in Google Slides. And while I’m no computer tech wiz, I can tell you there are a few ways to reduce the likelihood of others running into problems making a copy of your Google Slides presentation:
- Make sure you’ve set the presentation settings to “Anyone with the link.” If you skip that step, the rest of the process doesn’t work.
- Encourage users to access your presentation using their Gmail account. This makes the process of saving the document easier and more straightforward. If they don’t have a Gmail account, users may be able to link another email to their Google profile so they can access your Google Slides.
- Make the copy on the device where the presentation will be used. Sometimes glitches occur when users try to make a copy of a work-related presentation using a work-related email on a person computer. Or someone will try to make a copy of a personal presentation through a work email and will later have trouble retrieving it. As the saying goes, “Start as you plan to continue.” For work-related projects, stick with a work device and use a work-related email. For personal materials, use a personal email on a personal device.
And now you can create presentations for others to share in without having to worry about your original Google Slides being altered.
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