Frequently Asked Questions

ARR and Softconf

Q: Do all of the authors need to have SOFTCONF profiles? Why?

A: Yes. We use the SOFTCONF profiles to help identify conflicts, so every author (not just the submitting author) needs to have a SOFTCONF profile.

Q: Why do I have to fill out the COI field?

A: While some conflicts are generated automatically (from your e-mail domain and coauthors on papers), not all of these relationships are known. It is your responsibility to list potential conflicts that might not be discovered by the system (the following is not meant to be a complete list): internships, joint research projects, journal editing, personal relationships, or new collaborations that have not yet resulted in a publication.

Q: Does every author need to have a Semantic Scholar profile?

A: Generally, yes, any author that has any publications should have a Semantic Scholar profile. If an author does not have such a profile because they do not have any publications yet (not even arXiv preprints) it is okay to put “n/a” in the semantic scholar profile field.

Q: I submitted an abstract with some authors without a Softconf profile or missing information in their profiles. Can this be edited?

A: Yes, this can now be updated. Please do this as soon as possible so that we can match reviewers to authors.

Q: How big can my submission be? Why isn’t it larger?

A: For the paper PDF, 10MB; for the software, 50MB; for the data, 50MB. Reviewers need to download the papers, and not everyone has a strong internet connection at all times. If you need more than this, consider using compression or lower resolution on images in your paper (for raster images) and removing polygons (for vector images). You can also reencode your PDF.

Q: I just finished my work and want to consider submiting it to this conference. Shall I submit it to ARR in the Dec cycle or directly to the conference?

A: There are two ways to submit to ACL: through ACL Rolling Review, which is more like a journal submission (with the ability to revise and resubmit to the same authors and to “commit” to multiple venues beyond ACL, but with the cost of requiring more time) or directly submitting to the ACL program committee, which is faster but does not have the option to resubmit or to offer your work for consideration at other venues.

Q: I uploaded a file (e.g., previous submission) and I can’t delete it. What do I do?

A: Due to a limitation of SoftConf, it’s easiest to just upload a PDF that just says “no previous submissions”. Sorry for the hassle.

Q: You told me to fill out a Semantic Scholar profile, but there’s something wrong with it! I had to reach out to them to fix it, and they said that it takes four to six days.

A: You can always update your Semantic Scholar on the global Softconf profile. Please just put the best Semantic Scholar you can for you in as soon as you can. Not having that information will make reviewer matching harder, but we’ll do our best.

Q: How do I set a corresponding author? Can I change the author order?

A: These distinctions are meaningless at review time as we treat the authors as a set. This only comes into play at publication time.

Q: My research is unexpectedly awesome. Can I upgrade from a short paper to a long paper after the abstract deadline? What about the other way?

A: This is fine. We need the abstracts to make sure we have enough reviewers, but changing the submission type doesn’t affect the number or type of reviewers, so change away!

Q: Can I submit my paper back to ARR after being rejected from this conference?

A: A paper may not be simultaneously under review through ARR and an ACL conference. In addition, a paper that has received reviews through ARR and then separately receives reviews from ACL will not be eligible for resubmission to ARR, per ARR’s rules.

Q: My paper was reviewed by ARR but I want to submit it directly to this conference. Is that allowed?

A: In order for a paper to be submitted directly to ACL 2023, it must be inactive in the ARR system. This means that the submission must either be explicitly withdrawn by the authors, or the ARR reviews are finished and shared with the authors before the submission deadline, and the paper was not re-submitted to ARR.

Q: My paper has been reviewed by ARR and I intend to commit to this conference; can I post it to ArXiv?

A: In this case there are two anon periods: one starting a month before the ARR deadline until the reviews are received and one starting from a month before the ACL commit deadline. As long as you are outside these two periods (e.g., you have ARR reviews and are before the commit deadline), you can post a preprint.

Q: Do I have to submit to SOFTCONF if I commit from ARR?

A: No you do not have to. Just commit directly through the same SOFTCONF system. We will make the submission page ready after the direct submission deadline.

Q: I want to commit my ARR submission and cannot find the submission link.

A: You can submit using the same SOFTCONF link as direct submissions but only after the normal deadline. See CFP url.

Q: Do I need to submit an abstract if I’m committing from ARR.

A: No, that is only for new, direct submissions.

Q: Can I upload a modified version of our ARR submission?

A: No – we will use the original version and original reviews, since there will be no separate reviewing process for ARR comissions.

Q: The PDF file for ARR committment should contain the full paper or just the limiation and rebuttal sections?

A: It should only contain the limitation and rebuttal sections.

Paper Formatting

Q: Why does my draft not pass the formatting test by using the standard conference template and ACL Pubcheck?

A: For using the verification script, one should not use the review mode. More concretely, the validation script checks to make sure that there’s nothing in the margins. The extra numbers to aid reviewing violates the checker. After you pass the check, make sure you turn it back to the review mode. Otherwise, your paper will be desk rejected.

Q: I uploaded a paper not using the review mode, here’s a version with review mode on. Can you upload that for me?

A: Unfortunately, we can’t easily verify that the two PDFs have the same content. And it certainly would not be viable to for the unpaid volunteers to allow uploads for all five thousand submissions.

Q: Do reviewers actually need the review mode?

A: Yes, it makes the review process smoother to be able to directly refer to specific positions in the paper. Thus, it is a required part of the submission process.

Q: If I commit from ARR, what is the page limit of my rebuttal file?

A: We require that the rebuttal file does not exceed one page using the standard template.

Q: I forgot to add Limitations to my submission, can you add this?

A: Sorry, we have decided that all submissions without Limitations will be desk rejected

Q: I got the error: The page size of this PDF is different from A4, which is not allowed by the submission guidelines.

A: First, make sure you are using the official submission templates. If you are not, this problem is typically the result of using “Print to PDF” (e.g., from the Word template) and specifying a different page size other than A4.

Q: Can I use LaTeX package “foobar”?

A: We have no specific guidelines beyond those in the formatting instructions, and there are no disallowed packages per se. However, do not do anything that circumvents the spirit of the formatting guidelines by changing line spacing, font size, font family, etc. to unfairly fit text into a submission. Such submissions can be rejected.

Q: Can you look over my submission to make sure it’s okay?

A: Sorry, as unpaid volunteers we do not have the bandwidth to individually check all presubmission files for compliance, and it would be unfair to do this for some submissions but not others. Please carefully follow the directions, check the FAQs, and ask your colleagues for advice. We will update this FAQ as we get new questions about submission. You can check your submitted files by logging into Softconf.


Q: I am a reviewer and I want to reduce my review load / change my assigned submissions/ tell my unavailability dates.

A: Kindly contact your senior area chairs for taking necessary actions.

Q: Some of our authors are ACs, but the submission form asks to confirm that at least one of the authors is a reviewer.

A: Serving as an AC (or SAC) counts as reviewing activity.

Dual Submissions

Q: Can I submit my work to another conference or submit work that is currently under review elsewhere (e.g. at EACL)?

A: EACL’s notification deadline is right after ACL’s submission deadline. If you withdraw your paper within 24 hours of the other conference’s notification (assuming it is accepted), this brief period of double submission is acceptable. No other double submissions are allowed.

Q: What about papers rejected from AISTATS? Its notification deadline is before the submission deadline?

A: We do not count this as a dual submission, as the notification is before the deadline. However, if the paper is accepted to AISTATS, you must of course withdraw the submission from this conference?

Q: What about papers rejected from AISTATS? Its notification deadline is Jan 19?

A: We do not count this as a dual submission, as the notification is before the deadline.

Q: What about WWW? It has a similar deadline as EACL.

A: We made a special exception for the EACL withdrawal deadline to be later after extensive negotiations because of the very large overlap in community and because we have access to information. We cannot have special cases for all conferences. If you withdraw your paper before the ACL deadline, however, then it of course does not count as a dual submission.

Q: Can dual I submit my work to a non-archival workshop?

A: Yes, however, make sure that this does not violate the anonymity policy by making a new revision of your paper available online.


Q: Is it OK to withdraw my paper from ICLR and submit to this conference?

A: If a non-anonymous version of the paper was made publicly available before the ACL 2023 anonymity period, it is OK to withdraw from ICLR and submit to ACL. However, if de-anonymization on withdrawal results in the paper being de-anonymized for the first time, the paper would violate the ACL anonymity policies. As all submitted papers (accepted or rejected) will be deanonymized after the notification, this applies even if the paper was rejected from ICLR.

Q: Is this consistent with previous ACL policy on ICLR anonymization?

A: We are following the policy set forth by (ACL 2021)[], which allowed de-anonymization within the ACL anonymity period so long as it was previously released outside the period.

Q: Is it OK to talk about my work (e.g. at a workshop) during the anonymity period?

A: Yes, you can talk in small venues about your work, but be careful not to publish a non-anonymized draft of the work and please do not publicize it widely (e.g. on social media).

Q: Does submitting to a leaderboard violate anonymity? Can I link to the leaderboard?

A: It depends on how you name your leaderboard entry and what information the leaderboard makes public. If your leaderboard shows your institution, e-mail, or real-life name, then pointing to the leaderboard would violate anonymity (you can still report the score in the paper, though). If the leaderboard just has the name of the model (which is independent of your institution), then there is no problem.

However, model names should be “new”; if you previously published the model FizzBuzz, the leaderboard entry should not be FizzBuzz 2.0.

Q: My paper is no longer under review at ARR but I plan to commit it to this conference, can I post it to ArXiv?

A: As long as it is a month before the commit deadline, you may post a non-anonymous copy on the web.

Q: Can I dual-submit my work to a conference/workshop where the work will be included in non-refereed proceedings volumes?

A: Yes. However, make sure that you do not post a preprint by yourself. In addition, you are asked not to advertise a non-anonymous preprint on social media or take other actions that would further compromise double-blind reviewing during the anonymity period. See the “Submission” section of ACL Policies for Submission, Review and Citation

Virtual Attendance

Q: Would I be able to present my paper virtually at the main conference and the workshops? Would I be able to participate in the conference virtually?

A: Yes, while we are still finalizing the format of the conference, all participants will have the option to attend virtually.