Word 2011: paste unformatted (plain) text with Cmd+V shortcut

Update from 2018: for Word 2016 instructions, click here.

The following video shows how to assign pasting as plain text (without formatting) to Cmd+V keyboard shortcut/hotkey in Microsoft Word 2011 for Mac OS X.

Note that it is not the same as “Paste and match formatting”, which first pastes rich text and then formats it.

(One of the visitors asked me how to get rid of new lines when pasting from Preview.app, so the video starts from demonstration of the problem).

In the video I show how to:

  1. Unbind Cmd+V from standard “Paste”.
  2. Record a macro for Cmd+V.
  3. Fix the source code of the new macro (by replacing wdPasteDefault with wdFormatPlainText).
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20 Responses to Word 2011: paste unformatted (plain) text with Cmd+V shortcut

  1. oxied says:

    Thanks! Works perfect

  2. Danny L. says:

    That marcro throws an error when I have graphics in the cut&paste buffer.

    Can you think of making this macro more versatile so it pastes graphics as “wdPasteDefault” and uses “wdFormatPlainText” only for pasting text?

  3. Danny L. says:

    This worked for me. I don’t know how to get rid of the ugly GoTos but as it is Visual Basic stuff, it kind of has to look like this, I guess.

    Sub PasteAsPlainText()
    ' Paste as Plain Text first and if buffer contains graphics
    ' this will throw an error. Resort to default action then.
    On Error GoTo NoText

    Selection.PasteAndFormat (wdFormatPlainText)
    GoTo TheEnd

    Selection.PasteAndFormat (wdPasteDefault)

    End Sub

  4. Luis says:

    Many thanks, works like a charm!!!

  5. Pingback: Shaun Abram » Blog Archive » Setting up a macro in Word to paste unformatted text

  6. Martin Berggren says:

    Fantastic! I have been longing for this for many years! Thanks!!

  7. Abu Ali says:

    Suuret kiitokset! (A big thank you in Finnish.)

  8. torrnado says:

    pathetic and HIGHLY irritating that ms word users must resort to these kinds of workarounds for basic word processing needs. this option should be the DEFAULT paste command instead of something users must fix themselves.

    microsoft, are you listening?

    do you even care?

  9. Susanne says:

    A perfect solution to a long suffered problem. Can even be done by Visual Basic newbies like me. Perfect, thanks!

  10. Kostya says:

    Thank you, works perfect.

  11. Micah S says:

    Thanks, worked great! I used Danny L’s code and assigned the macro to Cmd + Shift + v.

  12. Pingback: Apple:How can one create a shortcut for pasting unformatted text in Microsoft Word 2008 for Mac? – Apple Questions

  13. Arun says:

    Wow, this is great!! Oh MSFT, how you suck – let me count the ways…

  14. kc says:

    This is exactly what I needed,

  15. Greg says:

    Perfect. Nice work, much appreciated. Crazy that this isn’t easier, but your fix is elegant.

  16. Jim says:

    Perfect, just what I needed! Thank you!

  17. Zoletta says:

    Any way to do this with High Sierra??

    • Dae says:

      Yes, you can do that in High Sierra in Word 2016. The steps are exactly the same except that you don’t have to edit the source code of the macro.

      1. Go to Tools > Customize Keyboard, choose Edit > EditPaste. In the Current Keys list, remove Command+V.

      2. Go to Tools > Macro > Record Macro.

      “Macro name” — “PasteAsUnformattedText” (the name can be anything you want actually).

      “Assign macro to” — click “Keyboard” -> add Command+V (don’t forget to press the Assign button before clicking OK).

      “Store macro in” — All Documents (Normal.dotm).

      Press OK.

      Then immediately go Edit > Paste Special > choose Paste … As Unformatted Text > press OK.

      Then immediately go to Tools > Macro > Stop Recording.

      Now you should have a macro called “PasteAsUnformattedText” (or whatever name you’ve entered) which is bound to Command+V, and it should work.

      If it doesn’t work, go to Tools > Customize Keyboard and make sure Cmd+V is not used for Edit > EditPaste and make sure Cmd+V is present as a hotkey for Macro > “PasteAsUnformattedText” (or whatever name you’ve entered).

  18. Clayton Summitt says:

    I love this, only difference is I use excel for keeping track of commissions, pasting values is a frequent occurrence for me. I forgot that I can set up macros for that! Thanks for the expertly produced video.

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