- Paste the text into a web browser's URL bar, then copy it again to strip formatting.
- Paste the text into a plain text editor like Notepad, then copy it again to strip formatting.
- Look for a program-specific paste command that ignores formatting.
Instead of Cmd-V, use Shift-Option-Cmd-V.
(Not the most convenient key combo, but I had grown used to this until I switched from a Macbook to a Win8 notebook and couldn't even twist my fingers to get this done.)
AutoHotkey is a program that lets you run scripts in the background that change things like keyboard behavior. We're going to set up a script that automatically strips formatting from Ctrl-V.
First, download and install AutoHotkey_L. Why the "L"? It's an actively developed version of the original AutoHotkey. I tried using the old, original version but it kept crashing.
Next, create a plain text file in your Documents folder (or anywhere, really). Give it an .ahk rather than a .txt extension so you can just open this script file to make it run. Put this content in the file:
;Causes Ctrl-V to paste _unformatted_ textThis works because "ClipboardAll" represents your clipboard's content with formatting, while just "Clipboard" represents it without formatting. Here's the procedure in English:
ClipboardFormatted := ClipboardAll
Clipboard = %Clipboard%
Clipboard := ClipboardFormatted
;Use Shift-Ctrl-V to paste formatted text
$^+v:: Send ^v
When the user presses Ctrl-V...The last bit of the script it optional. If you want to be able to override the new plain text pasting behavior, it lets you press Shift-Ctrl-V to do the normal (annoying) thing.
Store the clipboard contents with formatting in a temporary variable.
Replace the clipboard contents with an unformatted version of itself.
Invoke the usual Ctrl-V command.
Put the original (formatted) clipboard contents back into the clipboard.
Clear the temporary variable.
Run this script file and--if things work out right--a little green 'H' icon should appear in the notification area by your clock, volume control, etc. A good next step would be to add it to the list of programs that run on login.
Extra: Swapping Keys with AutoHotkey
Thanks to OS X, I have become very accustomed to using the key immediately to the left of my spacebar to copy, paste, and select all. My AutoHotkey script file also includes these lines:
;Swap Left-Ctrl and Left-Alt keysSee the AutoHotkey documentation for other keys to remap and other functionality entirely.