Task 5: Language

In order for speech synthesis to work properly in order to read out a PDF using a screen reader program, for example, or to convert a PDF’s content into audio files or audio streams  it is important to specify the correct language for all text in a PDF. Correct language settings also support syllable separation and spelling checks.

In Adobe InDesign, you can achieve this using Language settings for paragraph or character styles.

In Task 5: Language, MadeToTag lets you easily check and adjust language settings for paragraph and character styles as well as local formatting.

The Language window indicates which languages are currently assigned in the document and allows you to change highlighted text regions.

  1. The Primary language is the document’s main language.
  2. Further languages is used for individual passages in languages that are not the primary language.
  3. The dialog also shows the percentage value for the portions of the document for which each language has been configured.
  4. You can also highlight selected paragraphs or text passages and use the Language for text selection drop-down menu at the bottom to assign languages.

Highlight languages by color

The Highlight languages by color option, activated using a checkbox, highlights text within a document using the corresponding color for each language. This provides the user with an overview of how languages are currently assigned.

Keyboard commands

You can also use keyboard commands to assign language settings.

To do so, you must first check Use MadeToTag shortcut set at the bottom of the window.

The flyout menu shows the available keyboard commands under the “Export Tags | Language” category. These will only function when the currently displayed window is the language view.

You can use keyboard commands to quickly apply language settings to paragraphs and characters. You can change existing paragraph and character styles or create copies of styles. You can also format text locally without linking it to paragraph or character styles.

For more on this, see the chapter on keyboard commands.




English text in a table appears as "Other languages" when i try to change it to English it crashes. Is there a way around this bug? I'm on InDesign 18.3 on Mac OS 12.6.4. thanks,


René Treuber

Hi Jon,

when it appears as "other languages", either the paragraph style or character style used for the text has another language specified than one of the three displayed languaged. I just tried to verify and changing the text in tables does also work. For changing the text, did you use the dropdown, the flyout menu or keyboard shortcuts? Maybe it's a strange issue in the document. Could you send the document page to our support at axaio.com address, please?

kind regards,


hi Rene,

Applying a language in the paragraph style worked.

Originally, i was selecting the text and applying it or "local formatting" as in the article above ("task 5" and 4th circled area) and it was causing it to crash each time. it usually works so it must be because it was in a table.


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