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Any Other Topics: Question Marks in Threads - an experiment

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Started by: Jim McGregor

Go to latest contribution by Tim Ingram, 07 December 2012, 10:12. Go to bottom of this page.

Contribution from Jim McGregor 26 November 2012, 11:23top / bottom of page

We seem to be having a problem with ‘funny characters’ creeping into posts. I always assumed the problem was with pasting material into the forum that has been previously typed in word with automatic replacement of quotes with “smart quotes”. These are a well-known problem on websites. So I’m trying to reproduce the problem here. I’ve typed this paragraph in Word with ‘smart quotes’ switched on and will post somewhere in the forum.

The smart quotes have come through without a problem so far.

I've just restarted the site, which means all text is reloaded from the database in which it is permanently stored and the smart quotes are still OK.

Tim, where did you type your last contribution on nuggets from the Journal, beefore you pasted it into the website?

Contribution from Tim Ingram 27 November 2012, 08:50top / bottom of page

Jim - I had wondered what was going on! We have a Mac computer and I have just pasted straight from the 'Pages' text that I typed; maybe I should save it as a 'Word' document - I hadn't really thought of this. Will try this next time.

Contribution from Diane Clement 27 November 2012, 09:16top / bottom of page

I've often wondered why this happens. Here's a text pasted in from Word using different fonts, with different styles of quotes. The browser will lose the fonts, but there may be a difference in how they are displayed:


“Arial smart quotes”

“Times New Roman smart quotes”

“Verdana smart quotes”


"Arial dumb quotes"

"Times New Roman dumb quotes"

"Verdana dumb quotes"

Well that hasn't made any question marks but has shown the different style of quote.

Contribution from Tim Ingram 04 December 2012, 16:26top / bottom of page

Well I still seem to be getting question marks instead of quotes, but not straight away. I have been typing using Helvetica and single quotes (and of course there is no facility to italicise plant names). I don't think the latter is too important but the question marks are annoying.

Contribution from Tim Ingram 07 December 2012, 10:12top / bottom of page

Thought I would try out a whole lot of different characters pasted from Word onto the website just to see how they are recognised:-



[ ] { } ? ? ? ?

` , . / ~ < > ?

(these may come up accurately initially and then change in time?)

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