Switch to read-only mode

I get nervous having edit-access to a Figma file sometimes, especially as an engineer. I don’t want to accidentally make a change to something in the file.

It would be great if there was a way to switch myself to a read-only mode (temporarily) to avoid accidentally breaking/changing something.

For now, I’ve just been creating a new branch. If I change something on the branch, then I don’t need to worry.


having the same issue, yes please!

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Came here to see if there a way to turn off editing. I feel you, bro. Hope they make it easier to turn on and off.


I had a bad experience with Figma. A coworker blamed me for ruining weeks his work after I made a few comments.

How could I have done such a thing? I’m no novice internet user. Upon closer inspection, I saw there were several revisions associated with my account. Somehow, I may have accidentally edited his diagram. Maybe a cat walked across my keyboard while I was afk with the browser tab open?

How it happened, is still a mystery. However, all the blame, pain, and anguish could have been avoided if I had the ability to enter a read-only or comment-only mode. (As I compose this reply, I notice that even this forum response offers a “Switch to read-only mode” feature!)

I aspire to be the cautionary tale that motivates a brighter future where collaborators can suggest improvements on the Figma diagrams of ornery authors without fear of unjustified reprisals.

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Oh Graeme! I really feel for you!! This is precisely the type of experience I want to avoid (except instead of a cat, it’s blatantly going to be me who messes it up :smile: ).

I hope Figma can add this read-only feature to avoid this sort of thing in the future! Thanks for sharing your real-life experience.

Please add read only feature!!! It ruins all the product.

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I also wish for a possibility to set myself in read/comment only mode as an editor for a file in order to avoid any unintentional changes when inspecting/browsing/looking for any details etc. in my shared library file.

As a developer, I have to use the move tool to inspect elements. I have accidentally moved elements and while there is an undo action I would rather I just be able to switch into a read-only mode.

I have been using read-only / view-only for a long time, then I needed access to a plugin to export something in a certain way. Plugins can’t be run in view-only mode so I was given elevated privileges. Now everything is completely different. I’ve lost the quick access export tab along the top right (next to inspect), how I navigate around the screen to inspect distances between elements is incredibly slow and painful. Not only do I have to re-learn the entire app, but i’m very fearful i’m going to make an accidental change.

Being able to switch between modes is beyond essential. My team has suggested making me an account admin, so that I can promote and demote myself on a per-project basis for when I need to run plugins, but then reverting back afterwards. This is beyond ridiculous