PDF Downloads Now Enabled on Decree

We have been experimenting over the past two months with adding a standalone button to let users download the content of Decree as a pre-formatted PDF. Even though it has always been possible to download content from Decree using the Print PDF option available in most browsers, a number of users have spoken to us asking for this to be done more easily, and we are happy to finally have this feature enabled.

Qanoon always had a PDF download feature—while Decree didn’t—because the source of the text on Qanoon is a PDF published in the Official Gazette, and we offer this source PDF as a download to enable users to verify that the content they are reading on Qanoon is actually the same as the content that was published in the Official Gazette. For Decree, there is no source PDF to verify the accuracy of the content because we are the authors of the translation, and our process of creating and uploading the translation does not require the creation of a PDF file.

We have also been hesitant about offering PDFs due to the risks that they might impose to users as those who rely on PDFs might not be aware that a document has been amended or revised, not only when we revise the document to integrate new amendments, but also when we revise our translations to make them more coherent with the greater body of legislation we have on Decree.

However, we also fully understand that certain users prefer to read larger documents on paper, and we are also aware that in the normal course of the business of lawyers and legal advisors they would have to share the full-text version of a document with the person they are advising, and for this reason they need to have the legislation in an easy to share PDF format.

The PDF solution that we implemented does not require us to manually create a PDF, and instead generates one using the content already published on the website with additional metadata such as the date on which the document is downloaded, a hyperlink to the source page, and a hyperlink to any royal decrees or ministerial decisions referenced by the downloaded item. We hope that this information would encourage users to go back and verify that the item they are reading is up to date.

The PDF download feature is available to logged-in users on all Decree Legislation and Decree Intel documents, and the button is located at the end of each document.

You can test this featuring by logging into Decree and viewing any of our translated items.