Google has added the ability to control who can see and edit specific Web pages in its Google Sites service.
Google Sites hosts Web pages and is available to personal users or those using the Google Apps service. Previously site permissions were an all-or-nothing affair, but yesterday Google enabled the finer-grained controls.
"Using page-level permissions, you can make some pages private for certain users while keeping other pages public for everyone to see," programmer Eric Zhang said in a blog post. "For instance, let's say you have a Google Site that you've shared with your team and your manager. You can allow your team to see one set of pages, let your manager edit another set of pages, and keep yet another set of pages private for only you."
The feature is turned off by default. It can be enabled by clicking More Actions then Sharing and Permissions. When the feature is turned on, site owners can give specific individuals privileges with specific pages. Page permissions can be inherited from others to simplify the process.
There's still plenty of work to be done on Google Apps, though, especially given Google's belief that its Web-based nature makes it more naturally suited to collaboration than Microsoft Office and Exchange.
"Nice," said one commenter about the per-page permissions in response to the blog post. "Even nicer would be [the] ability to password protect opening of individual Google Docs files."