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I came across this issue regarding labels overlapping annotations in ArcMap 10.6 (picture left) where they don't overlap in 10.5 (picture right)... What am I missing? I simply opened the mxd in the newer version so the settings are all the same (I would have guessed, but obviously 10.6 ignores some of them):

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I use the Maplex Label Engine and already tried to add another polygon feature class serving as a mask for my annotations, giving it a feature weight of 1000 (both interior and boundary) which should block all labels from being displayed in that area. But that is simply being ignored!

  • Are these labels or an annotation feature class? – Berend Feb 14 at 15:11
  • Did you use Maplex in 10.5 as well? Maplex has many options, so it is hard to tell what goes wrong here. Maybe you accidentally checked 'Never remove' on the 'Conflict Resolution' tab? – Berend Feb 14 at 15:27
  • If this really is an annotation feature class, then placement rules would have been set when you converted it into annotation. Try converting it to annotation. – danak Feb 16 at 0:32
  • The town name "Aidlingen" is an annotation (stored in a file geodatabase) and the overlapping street names are dynamic labels. Maplex was used in 10.5 as well, all the same settings as mentioned. 'Never remove' is unchecked. – kiwi75 Feb 18 at 7:53
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True (database) annotation is a feature, so I would not think you need an extra masking layer.

From the Labeling toolbar, choose Label Weight Ranking. Then, assuming 10.6 is not hugely different than the 10.4.1 that I use, look for a drop down near the bottom. It defaults to Features. You can choose to also set Annotation and Graphics layers' weights. If the weight of your Aidlingen layer is set to "High," most or all labels should move or disappear if they are on top of the annotation. If you want them to move, you will have to make the Maplex rules very loose for placement.

I have found that all sorts of actions change label weights, e.g., simply copying layers to a new map or removing a layer and then adding it back in. So converting to a new version may do this too.

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    Thanks for your answer! All of those suggestions were already tested with no success and in the meantime we're in contact with Esri technical support. They could reproduce the issue with their own data so it seems to be a bug in 10.6 caused by the option 'Remove dublicates' in the Maplex 'Label Density'. If you turn that off the labels will behave just fine (but then there will be too many for our project, so no option for us). We're waiting for a solution from Esri. – kiwi75 Mar 1 at 7:45

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