Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Plain Text Pasting as the Default.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 28, 2014)
When you paste information in a document, from the Clipboard, there are generally several different ways that Word can paste it. If you do a Ctrl+C or a Ctrl+X to place information on the Clipboard, you can see the different ways that Word could paste the data by displaying the Paste Special dialog box. (Click the down-arrow under the Paste tool in the Clipboard group of the ribbon, then choose Paste Special.) (See Figure 1.)
Figure 1. The Paste Special dialog box.
Of course, when you press Ctrl+V to paste, Word must choose one of the available pasting methods to use in the actual paste operation. The method chosen by Word depends on the type of data you are pasting.
If you do a lot of pasting of text from other programs, you may want to make the default pasting method Unformatted Text, which means that the text is placed in the document with no formatting whatsoever. (The same as choosing Unformatted Text from the Paste Special dialog box.) There is no way to configure this in Word, but you can use a very, very simple macro to do the pasting for you:
Sub InsertAsPlainText() On Error GoTo F Selection.PasteSpecial Link:=False, DataType:=wdPasteText, _ Placement:=wdInLine, DisplayAsIcon:=False Exit Sub F: Beep End Sub
You can assign this macro to a tool on the Quick Access Toolbar or you can assign it to a keyboard shortcut. In fact, you can assign it to the Ctrl+V shortcut, which means that it replaces the normal pasting behavior of Ctrl+V.
WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (13144) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Plain Text Pasting as the Default.
Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!
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