Where Can You Control Automatic Smart Quotes and Dashes in macOS?

Smart quotes and dashes usually make your text look more professional. But if they’re problematic, you can turn off the feature that inserts them automatically or revert them on a one-off basis.

June 3, 2024

Most people like smart quotes and dashes, at least most of the time. Your Mac is probably set up to turn the single (‘) and double (“) hash marks and double hyphens (–) that you type into the apostrophes (’) and single smart quotes (‘’), double smart quotes (“”), and em dashes (—) used in professional publications. However, in some situations, like programming, smart quotes and dashes are problematic. To prevent macOS from automatically inserting them, open System Settings > Keyboard and click the Edit button next to Input Sources. In the dialog that appears, turn off “Use smart quotes and dashes.” As a bonus tip, if you occasionally want single or double hash marks, such as to indicate feet and inches, instead of turning the entire feature off, immediately press Command-Z after typing a single or double hash mark to undo the change from straight to curly.

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