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Odd paragraph mark in Word

by rfwebber / January 24, 2006 5:47 AM PST

Frequently, when I copy some text from a web site, say, into Word 2000, I find that instead of the usual paragraph mark at the end of each paragraph, I get a leftward pointing arrow with a little tail on the right (like the label on the Enter key on most keyboards). I can't seem to reformat the paragraphs with these marks without first changing them to normal paragraph marks, a laborious procedure. Can anyone enlighten me?

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Re: strange paragraph marker
by Kees Bakker / January 24, 2006 7:13 AM PST

This isn't an (end of) paragraph, but an end of line character. You can easily make them in Word itself by pressing shift+enter. It's a way to go to a new line WITHIN a paragraph (or within one item of a numbered list without starting a newly numbered item). If something looks like:
1. blablabla
2. blo
(add a few spaces before the second blo, so that it lines up with the first one: they disappear in html) there's a paragraph mark after blablabla and a new line after the first blo.

It depends on how the web page is formatted. I experimented with the forum FAQ-page and I get the impression a html-paragraph (anything between <p> and </p>) is converted to a Word-paragraph (ending with a paragraph marker), while a new line (<br> in html) is translated to a Word new-line character. And that seems a quite logical thing to do.

Read about the html-side in
and have a look at the html-source of the page you are copying.

I think there's nothing you can do about it, except complaining to the webmaster that, in your opinion, his use of paragraphs and breaks could be better. It's rather bad on the FAQ-page, I should say.

Hope this helps.


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Re: Re: strange paragraph marker
by rfwebber / January 24, 2006 11:25 AM PST

Thanks for the explanation.

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Why not use find/replace?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 24, 2006 9:00 AM PST

It would not be tedious to replace them all at one time.


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Re: Why not use find/replace?
by rfwebber / January 24, 2006 11:31 AM PST

I tried that, but couldn't copy and paste the 2 characters (i.e., end-of-line & end-of-paragraph) in the find/replace box.

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Re: Why not use find/replace?
by rfwebber / January 24, 2006 11:38 AM PST

I figured out a way to do it! I used the special character dropdown menu in the find/replace box. (I had forgotten about that.)

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(NT) (NT) Good job. Glad we could help.
by Kees Bakker / January 24, 2006 4:35 PM PST
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I cheated another way. I copied the character.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 24, 2006 8:42 PM PST

Highlight with mouse, Control-C (copy), find/replace, then Control-V (Paste) it into the right box.

Multiple solutions.


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Didn't work for me
by rfwebber / January 25, 2006 2:00 AM PST

Hmmm. I couldn't make that work. The paste wouldn't stick in the find/replace box. (The Replace, Replace All and Find Next buttons remained greyed-out.)


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Help! The "end of line" mark and paragraph mark won't copy
by 51mmsrs / February 19, 2009 10:02 PM PST

Hello Bob, I like your multiple solution idea for changing all the end-of-line format marks to end-of-paragraph format marks. But using the control-C key combination doesn't work for copying the end-of-line format mark (looks like a left pointing arrow with a short line up from the tail) or the regular Word paragraph format mark that looks like a backwards capital P with two vertical legs. Did you just assume that method of copying would work, or did you actually try it? If you succeeded, then you must know another setting to click to allow copying and pasting format marks. Please help by providing the method for copying format marks in Microsoft Word. Thanks for your help , Steve

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Time passed.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 19, 2009 10:30 PM PST

And the versions, OS and more affect the old answers.

There are other ways but today, Office 2003, Vista and no privacy blockers that may stop copy paste working and it appears to work still.

If you find something that doesn't work please take into account that there are now a lot more variables.

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Copy-paste doesn't work with me either.
by Kees Bakker / February 19, 2009 11:50 PM PST

But using More>Special I can do it: replacing a manual end-of-line (^l) by a paragraph (^p).


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Thank you Kees Bakker !!!!
by 51mmsrs / February 20, 2009 1:30 AM PST

Your method works! Thank you providing a direct, no nonsense method that you tried yourself and proved to work. Your method worked for me.

You have probably found out that getting answers to technical questions on-line is easy, the problem is getting correct answers. "Bob" is out to lunch, I researched his method and it never worked for any version of Microsoft Word or any Windows OS because formatting marks are not copyable. He obviously hasn't tried it himself, but for some reason feels duty bound to provide incorrect answers, wasting both his time and ours. Thanks again for your direct answer. Steve

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(NT) It was already in post #6 above.
by Kees Bakker / February 20, 2009 2:15 AM PST
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I didn't know that the end of line was a "manual line break"
by 51mmsrs / February 20, 2009 3:26 AM PST

You are right, reply #6 told about the find/replace function and mentioned the special characters; but I didn't know that the end-of-line format function was named a "manual line break" on the drop down list. I would have never figured out that the carrot with a small l was the correct way to identify the end-of-line formatting mark, unless given that insight, which you did. I appreciate software writers because applications like Microsoft Word are so powerful, but I am always amazed at how computer software writers expect users to "know" how to use the software. And, the help functions provided by Microsoft are zero help. Very frustrating to try to use the help function because it was written by computer geeks who haven't the faintist idea of all the questions we users have. The problem this thread was intitiated to figure out is a great example, I tried using the Microsoft help feature on this one, it was totally useless.

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I must admit ...
by Kees Bakker / February 20, 2009 6:35 AM PST

that I had to try a few others before I found the right one. I knew, however, it was possible, so I continued until I new.


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