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How to Copy Plain Text from the Web

Over at Lifehacker there's a tip on creating a hotkey that pastes plain text into Microsoft Word. But it involves creating a macro, which to me seems overcomplicated, and it obviously limits you to Word-based pasting. What if you want to paste plain text somewhere else, like into a blog tool?

For Firefox users (which, based on our recent poll, most of you are), there's a simpler and more versatile solution: Copy Plain Text, a Firefox add-on that, um, copies plain text.

See, if you've ever tried to copy text from a Web page and paste it into a Word document, blog tool, Web form, or the like, you've probably encountered the extremely annoying -- and potentially disruptive -- HTML code that comes with it.

With Copy Plain Text, you simply select text as you normally, then do any of the following to copy it to the clipboard, formatting-free:

  • Click Edit, Copy as Plain Text.
  • Right-click the selection and choose Copy as Plain Text.
  • Press Ctrl-Shift-C.
In other words, it works just like the standard Copy command. Once applied, you just paste your text like always (nothing beats the Ctrl-V keyboard shortcut, in my humble opinion).

This is one of those must-have Firefox add-ons. I just wish there was some way to combine it with another beloved favorite: Auto Copy.

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