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HTML and EPUB Export Bug in InDesign CS6

I’m a big fan of InDesign’s HTML export. I use it a lot to get magazine content created for print with InDesign to export cleanly and efficiently for posting online. However, the more I work with HTML export in CS6, the more baffled I am at the changes that have been made, and the more I pine for the markup I was used to in CS5.5.

Case in point, a very specific and puzzling bug that I just found while testing how tables using Table and Cell Styles get marked up. I had a table that used a consistent style for all of the numeric figures within its cells. As I always do, I tried to make the style as robust as possible, and built a GREP style into it that would change the color of any negative number to red by applying a character style called “Negative Numbers” automatically wherever a value began with a dash (minus sign).

However, upon exporting it to HTML from CS6, I discovered that the markup includes the character style name twice in the SPAN tag that gets wrapped around any text to which it’s applied. What I get in my HTML is this:

<span class=”Negative-Numbers Negative-Numbers”>

That’s just bizarre. And it happens consistently to all SPAN tags generated for formatting triggered by a GREP or Nested Style…but only within table cells! It doesn’t happen if you use the exact same style outside of a table. In that case, InDesign creates the following (correct) SPAN tag:

<span class=”Negative-Numbers”>

I fired up CS5.5 to see if this has always been the case and I just never noticed it before, but the problem doesn’t exist in that version. Text is correctly tagged whether it’s in a table or whether it’s not. So this is a new behavior that’s cropped up in CS6.

I’ve filed a bug report using the form on, and I’ll update this post if I hear back or get any resolution to the problem. For now, though, this seems like a weird behavior we’ve got to live with until this and other HTML-related bugs get squashed by the engineers.

UPDATE (3 January 2012): After Anne-Marie’s comment below, I did a test EPUB export of the same file and the problem occurs when exporting to that format as well. I changed the title of this post accordingly.

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5 Responses to “HTML and EPUB Export Bug in InDesign CS6”

  1. Wow that’s bizarre!

    I assume that’s what would happen w/EPUB export too.

    Thanks for the heads-up.

  2. I’ve noticed some subtle differences in regular HTML and EPUB XHTML out of InDesign, but not in this instance, AM. After testing it, I found the same duplicate style name problem in an exported EPUB.

  3. Michael, apologies for posting this here but I couldn’t find an email address – are you going to be updating your CS4 styles book for CS6? If not, I’ll buy it now. 🙂

  4. Emma — No plans to update the book at this time. My styles course goes as far as CS 5.5, though.

  5. Just came across your episode 49 tutorial on rules! wow! awesome. thanks so much!!!
    i will look for your classes on Your presentation style is terrific!