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How do I make checklist comments visible?

Did you know that you can choose whether to hide or reveal the general comments you included in your checklists? Let’s say you went birding somewhere, and in the general comments you included details about the weather, the names of your birding partners, site directions, or any other particulars of the trip. You can even include photos, for example a habitat shot. By default, eBird hides these from the public output.


Default setting: hidden comments

While hidden, this information is still available to researchers, but it is not visible to the general public. However, if you like to share these comments with others, then all you need to do is go to your Preferences (at the top of the page on your My eBird tab), and uncheck the box in the Data Privacy Section that says “Hide my checklist comments.”


After unchecking the box, comments are visible to everyone

The comments from all your checklists will then be visible to any eBird user who accesses them. If you don’t want this, simply go back in and check the box, and once again your general comments will be invisible (your comments per species will remain visible). For the general comments, it’s “all or nothing”; you cannot decide to show or hide them for each individual checklist.

However, it is possible to hide Individual checklists completely. If you don’t want a certain checklist to be visible in eBird output at all, you can select “Hide from eBird Output”. Your data will still be useful to scientists specifically requesting certain data, but will not be visible to the general public. The only places that the data will show up will be in your own My eBird and in the number displayed on the Top100. We don't recommend hiding checklists for no reason, since it excludes valuable data from potential future analysis. That said, we do realize it may sometimes be prudent to hide a checklist from output, for example in the case of nest locations of critically endangered birds threatened by egg collectors. In the case of reporting a sensitive species or location, it is also prudent to wait a period of time until reporting (at least 7 days), just in case!


The "Hide from eBird Output" selection is visible in the lower right corner of the checklist.

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