Monday, 6 January 2014

How to stop Outlook on Mac OSX replacing quotes & apostrophes with superscript numbers

Since switching to a Mac, I have been experiencing an odd issue with Outlook: although in my message editor all would look well, recipients of my messages would often find the apostrophes (’) replaced with a 1 and “” quotes with 3 & 2.

Today, I had had enough and tried to find the reason/solution. The former, it seems, is because Macs have their own version of ISO-8859 encoding, which means that other platforms do not correctly interpret text encoded in this format. The solution is simply force Outlook to use a different "Preferred encoding" in the Composing Preferences - UTF-8 works for me.

14 comments:

  1. Thank you! This has been driving me crazy.

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  2. Thank you! Sometimes I cannot see the forest for all the trees, and I have apparently missed that checkbox

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  3. Thank you! I've been using Outlook 2011 on 2 different MBPs but just started seeing this in the past few months. It was driving me crazy also.

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  4. YAY!!! I appreciate this post. My emails have been making me look like a fool!

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  5. Thank you - I've been googling this problem from time to time since I purchased my Mac computer, and finally found the answer! Now, if I only could make Apple type foreign characters in the same font as the rest of the message... :-)

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  6. Thank you soooo much!! This has been driving me nuts - but all better now. Thanks again :))

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  7. outlook --> preferences --> email --> composing --> at bottom UTF-8: still experiencing "around words" showing as superscript numbers - any other thought???

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    Replies
    1. Sorry, not sure why it's not working for you. Perhaps try a different encoding?

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  8. Wow, thank you for posting this tip! I don't know why I never found this help before, and did today, but I'm thankful!

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  9. Richard Edwards: Had the same issue. I changed font from consol to times new roman, now it's not doing superscript anymore under UTF-8

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  10. I've tried everything and this still won't work for me. Using Word and Outlook 2011 (v. 14.6.6). Changed encoding on both programs to UTF-8 (and also tried UTF-7 when that didn't work). Changed font of doc and default outlook font to Times New Roman. Still, I'm getting 2s and 3s as quotes. Help!

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  12. Just now I've received an email with this glitch in. It has:
    Content-type: text/plain;
    charset="ISO-8859-1"
    But these bogus characters mean that the message is not in fact in ISO-8859-1. So the reason isn't "because Macs have their own version of ISO-8859 encoding" - it's because Outlook is lying about it being in ISO-8859-1.

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