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Links are stripped out when pasting HTML-marked text into browser textareas

Posted

I want to be able to paste my email signature into Gmail in Firefox, with a few links, e.g. a link to my Twitter account but displaying just my Twitter handle.

The source is text in a RTF file.

Copying and pasting this text into Safari works and preserves the links, but not Firefox. In Firefox, the signature is displayed, but without the links.

Any idea why?

Additional System Details

Installed Plug-ins

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  • Plugin that detects installed Citrix Online products (visit www.citrixonline.com).
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  • Microsoft Office for Mac SharePoint Browser Plug-in
  • The QuickTime Plugin allows you to view a wide variety of multimedia content in web pages. For more information, visit the QuickTime Web site.
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  • Coupons Inc., Coupon Printing FireFox Plugin

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jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2375 solutions 21032 answers

An HTML <textarea> only handles plain text, so sites that want to offer rich editing generally use scripts to interpret your input. Different sites offer different levels of browser and format support. (And as a Windows user, my experience might be different than yours.)

Does it work if you copy/paste from HTML, e.g., a message you already sent?

Question owner

It does work if I add the links manually in the Gmail compose window and then copy/paste the result to a new message.

I'm just wishing there was some way of preserving that in a text expanding program so I don't have to type it when I want to use it, which is not for every email.

Thanks for your reply!

cor-el
  • Top 10 Contributor
  • Moderator
10776 solutions 96959 answers

In Firefox you need to use a toolbar button to create such a live hyperlink.

There is usually a button bar with buttons to format text like Bold and Italic just above the text area where you compose and edit the message text.
That toolbar may also have a button to turn a text link into a clickable hyperlink (look for a chain like button).
You can select the link text and click that button to turn the link into a clickable hyperlink.
If you can't find the button then hover them all to check the tooltip of each (e.g. Insert hyperlink).

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2375 solutions 21032 answers

I can only test on Windows, but copying and pasting from a received HTML message does preserve the links for me. To see the URL for the link, you have to click in the link.

By the way, have you tried using the signature feature instead of pasting each time? Signatures - Gmail Help

Question owner

@jscher2000

I only want to use my signature on ~10% of my messages, so I don't want to use Gmail's signature option. I'm also not interested in copy/pasting from a previous Gmail message (although it's nice to know that's an option) because that would take just as long as manually making the links.

@cor-el An editor allows that, yes, but if I copy HTML formatted text from a webpage or another Gmail message I can have text with links.

In general, it seems that if I want links, I need to copy from some place the system clipboard recognizes as HTML markup. An RTF file doesn't count.

I only wish I understood why Safari WILL accept links from content copied from an RTF formatted document, but Firefox will not.

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2375 solutions 21032 answers

Maybe send yourself an innocuous message with the signature, display the printable view (has the least extraneous material), and save that as a web page (HTML only) to the desktop so you can copy from it as needed?

mjmartin61 0 solutions 2 answers

This was not always the case with Firefox - this is a new problem. It seems in the last update or two is when this issue became a problem. It works perfectly in Safari but not Firefox. If they can't fix it I will have to start using Safari. Please fix it because I do like Firefox

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2375 solutions 21032 answers

Hi mjmartin61, what kind of document/what program are you copying from? Have you tried copying from an HTML document/webpage?

mjmartin61 0 solutions 2 answers

I'm copying from Kim Komando's web site and trying to send an email to myself of the content from the page. I do a copy from the HTML webpage, go to Gmail on Firefox, try to do a paste, it will not let me paste until i click on "Plain Text". It will then allow me to paste the "plain text" into the gmail but then I lose my RTF and links. When I click back to Rich Text Formating I have to reestablish the links by copying them in one by one. I don't have this problem if I use Gmail in Safari. I'm using Firefox 19.0.2 using iMac OS X Ver 10.6.8 - Snow Leopard. I noticed this problem happening before Christmas but I can't remember a definite date. This happens with other web pages, too.

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2375 solutions 21032 answers

Hi mjmartin61, Gmail supports pasting HTML on Windows, so I don't understand why it's not working on Mac.

I checked Google's support forum for Gmail and didn't see anything relevant in several different searches. For example:

With my lack of access to a Mac, I'm not sure I have any other thoughts. Perhaps there is an add-on workaround (extension or userscript)?

jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
2375 solutions 21032 answers

Random thought: I assume Gmail uses a secure connection. Do you notice any difference pasting from HTTPS pages (such as this one) compared with HTTP pages?