Support » Plugin: Gutenberg » Text with footnotes

  • Resolved nuithon


    Over the past 18 months, I migrated all my websites from other CMS to WP, since it offered me exactly the type of environment that I wanted. I have only recently discovered Gutenberg (over the past weeks), and I must say that it makes me unsure if I made the right move. I have tested Gutenberg on a mock website and — while aware that it has not reached its final stage — blocks seem to go exactly opposite the way I am working. I understand blocks well for page-building, or for image-centered site content, but I have more doubts about text content.
    While there are many questions that I would like to raise, here is a specific one, since it seems it has not been raised yet on this forum.
    My sites are heavily text-content-oriented: beside some sites with relatively short texts, most offer articles, sometimes long ones. Thanks to excellent plugins such as Mammoth .docx Converter, I have been able to import easily 20 ou 30 page-long texts with dozens of footnote (automatically converted into endnotes), then to insert illustrations.
    Whatever the way of doing it, I see no way to bridge the logic of blocks, on one side, with content including endnotes, on the other side. Obviously, I mean here that one should keep the ability to click on the note number and to be brought to the endnote, and vice-versa.
    Yes, I can copy-paste my entire article as content with endnotes into a single block, and it works – not even the need for a plugin anymore. This is an improvement. But I need to keep the block as a single block if I want the linking between the text and the endnotes to keep working.
    This is impossible as soon as I insert several images at different places in the text: Gutenberg forces me to separate the content into different blocks for that purpose. Then the linking between the content and the endnotes gets lost.
    I would like to know what the Gutenberg solution will be for texts with endnotes? Any easy way to do it? I understand this is only a question for a minority of users: but the beauty is (or was? I am afraid that I should soon have to use the past tense…) that WP was flexible for the need of a wide variety of uses and users.

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  • Thread Starter nuithon


    I just need to correct the statement I made above about being able to “copy-paste my entire article as content with endnotes into a single block” with Gutenberg. I got confused here with my various testing, this actually didn’t work (wishful thinking in looking for something to love in Gutenberg!). The rest of my remarks remain valid. I would have edited this inaccurate statement if I had a way to do it.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 4 months ago by nuithon. Reason: redundant words
    Plugin Author Gary Pendergast


    Thank you for the feedback, @nuithon!

    There’s been some experimental work on adding footnote support to Gutenberg, but it still has some ways to go before it’s in a usable state. Following this issue will give you updates on the state of native footnote support in Gutenberg.

    If you haven’t already seen it, the Academic Blogger’s Toolkit plugin is working on adding Gutenberg support, including footnotes. I don’t know where they’re currently at, but I’d recommend you check that plugin out, I’m sure they’d appreciate any feedback you have.

    Thread Starter nuithon


    Thank you very much for your answer, @pento. Much appreciated.

    No, I had not seen the discussion about adding footnote support to Gutenberg, thank you very much for the link. There are basically two ways to add footnotes: either as a popup when one is clicking on the note call, or the ability to click on the note call and be brought to the note at the end of the post and vice-versa. I experimented with both (in the current, classic WP), testing various plugins, and I came to the conclusion that the second way was the best for my use—and the way I like best for checking footnotes in other articles myself. Obviously, it is not the easiest one to implement in a block-based environment, since it means either creating huge multi-component blocks or implementing functionalities going across blocks. (But I am not a developer, I only describe the issue as I understand it.)

    Two other issues to keep in mind are:

    1) the ability to edit (add, remove…) footnotes once the article has been published;
    2) the ability to import a footnoted article (Mammoth Docx Converter is doing a splendid job in the current WP environment, and I hope that the developer will also think about Gutenberg implementation).

    I have never tested the Academic Blogger’s Toolkit. It seems that it is geared more toward inserting references (based on the usual tools for that) than footnotes, while I write myself articles based more on footnotes than references. But you are right to suggest me to look at what they might be intending to implement.

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