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  • When I go to paste a WORD document into WP using their little paste WORD button, I lose all of the formatting. Any hints on what I’m doing wrong here?

Viewing 11 replies - 1 through 11 (of 11 total)
  • Moderator Samuel Wood (Otto)

    (@otto42) Admin

    Well, the main thin you’re doing wrong is pasting Word Documents.

    The Paste from Word button fixes some errors that occur if you paste normal Word text in there, but it doesn’t help you retain formatting. Nothing can do that.

    The real solution: Stop using Word to write blog posts.

    Even better: Stop using Word for anything. Switch to OpenOffice.

    Ok, to be fair, I’m not using Word. I hate Microsnot as much as the next Mac user. I’m actually using Apple Pages, or sometimes Mellel or one of a half a dozen other word processors.

    My question really is: what is the best way to get word processor formatted text into a WordPress post?


    Use the style sheet. If you’re talking about indents and such, then that’s the only way. HTML interprets spaces the same way, whether it’s one or a thousand of them, it displays as one.

    There has to be some way or converter to import formatted word processor documents. They simply use tagging as well, just different tags. I’ve seen this in other blog software and it has worked well.

    Unfortunately, Open Office also pastes oddly. It’s not as bad as Word, but it’s quite a mess if you’ve got to go back into the HTML and try to fix anything.

    I’m not sure whether it makes good sense to try to copy and paste text from a word processor into WordPress, because of this problem.

    I haven’t yet found a good way to copy text from other formats into WordPress, without there being serious problems. Some day, perhaps…

    Moderator Samuel Wood (Otto)

    (@otto42) Admin

    My question really is: what is the best way to get word processor formatted text into a WordPress post?

    There isn’t one. You should not be writing formatted text. You should be writing plain text and applying formatting through style sheets. The most amount of formatting you should add directly to the post is semantic formatting, such as strong and emphasis tags, or header tags to mark headers… things like that.

    The web is not like other publishing methods. You’re not writing content just for people to look at in a web browser. They can view your content in other ways as well. Feeds are the most obvious example, but there’s others. What if they’re viewing it on a handheld browser, like a cell phone? What if they’re printing the content on a black and white printer?

    The idea here is that you want your content to be free of design and formatting as much as possible. Semantic tags like making words strong or emphasized are fine, as are links to other URIs and such, but all the actual “look” of a web page should be separated out, because that look may be different in different circumstances and it makes good sense to give your users the most choice in how they want to read your content.

    So write in plain text. Then add semantic information to it. By “semantic”, I mean that your formatting should describe the content itself, not how that content should look. Leave the “look” up to your site’s stylesheet. Changes made there can be made across the whole site all at once.

    If you’re using the WYSIWYG editor, you have an option built-in.

    When composing a post, click the right-most button to Show the advanced toolbar. That’ll get you another row of icons.

    Look for the one with the “W” on it. Paste from Word.

    [edit: oops, Otto already suggested that. My bad. Why aren’t you using it?]

    Moderator Samuel Wood (Otto)

    (@otto42) Admin

    Handy: I assume from the first post that he is using that. That’s why all the formatting is lost, because that’s the whole point of that button.

    Gah. My reading comprehension sucks 🙁


    The OP might want to look into a Weblog_Client?

    I have a lengthy OpenOffice text which I want to publish in the form of a series of WordPress pages (not blogs).
    Part of the text is in two columns, with the right-hand column in a smaller font size than the left one. There are no pictures or tables.
    Is there really no way of importing this?
    If not, is there some other place where I could upload it with a link from my WordPress blog?



    To GeoffreyKing:

    There is one tool out there that pastes *doc and *.odt files into web pages of any type *and* keeps them as xhtml 1.1 strict. The tool is called Sandvox, and is available from It’s Mac only, but does work very well. I have used it to copy complex *.doc files from a number of sources into static html that has been used in WordPress and non-Wordpress sites.

    My suggestion? Save your OpenOffice documents in Word 97/2003 format (*.doc) then copy/paste into Sandvox as a text document within your current template. Then edit as needed. I have also tested native *.odt pastes, which work also work well, but *.doc comprises the bulk of my testing. From there, the resultant (x)html file can be used within WordPress, or as a standard page.

    Now, the disclaimers:

    • No, I do not represent Karelia in any way.
    • No solution is perfect for Word files, as others have mentioned. However, Sandvox can get you most, if not all of the way there
    • Please take the solution in the spirit in which it is offered, and not as a platform for standard Open Source rhetoric. We all love Open Source and WordPress, which should be a given in this forum. If the solution helps with your problem – great. If not, then please reply with what did specifically resolve the problem.

    Best of luck to you!

Viewing 11 replies - 1 through 11 (of 11 total)
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