Windows Live Mail keeps changing my apostrophes and quotes into weird symbols!
When I place an apostrophe into an email (such as “I don’t understand”) my recipient sees a strange Greek-like symbol. I would like to fix this and would really appreciate any suggestions.
A: Windows Live Mail uses “smart quotes,” which are typesetting symbols to “fancy up” the quotes and apostrophes so they curl in the appropriate direction. As shown in the figure above, smart quotes change quote marks from "this" into “this.” (Note the subtle change in the shapes.)
Unfortunately, not every e-mail program recognizes smart quotes, and some e-mail programs confuse them with characters from other languages. That’s when you end up with people saying, “it’s all Greek to me.” (I’m sure the Greeks have their own phrase for the problem.)
There’s no way to turn off smart quotes from within Windows Live Mail, but here’s a workaround:
- Type your apostrophe, then type the backspace key. Windows Live Mail immediately replaces the smart quote with the regular apostrophe.
You’ll need to do this when typing regular quote marks, as well.
Try it a few times, and you’ll see how the apostrophe or quote mark changes subtly when you press the Backspace key. It’s an extra step, but it will keep your recipients from seeing the symbols.