How to remove “OBJ in a box” in WordPress: 3 easy methods

“OBJ in a box” is a character that sometimes appears unexpectedly on titles for WordPress posts. This article is a quick explanation of what it is and how to get rid of it.

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Has the “OBJ in a box” character appeared in your WordPress posts’ title fields? Many people have when drafting posts on WordPress editors, as evidenced by the many forum topics you’ll find on the matter.

If your goal is to just get rid of it, read the next section. After that, keep reading further to understand what it is, why it appears, and more detailed instructions on how to get rid of it.

3 quick solutions for “OBJ in a box”

  1. Paste your title as plain text using CTRL + Shift + V on Windows or CMD + Option + Shift + V on Mac.
  2. Select your title, delete it and retype without pasting.
  3. Copy the text in the title field. Then paste it on the Notepad or any other simple .txt editor. Now copy the text from the Notepad and paste it back on your title field. Pasting text you copied from the Notepad strips extra code which may be causing “OBJ in a box” to appear.

Now let’s move on to a deeper explanation about its origin and uses.

What is “OBJ in a box”?

“OBJ in a box,” “OBJ box,” “object in a box,” or simply “OBJ” is a character your WordPress text editor defaults to when it cannot display a special character or emoji.

OBJ is an abbreviation of “object replacement character” and is not a random glitch character. It’s part of the Unicode library, identified with the U+FFFC number. It’s been used since 1998 to signal that a character could not be interpreted and displayed.

WordPress is not the only platform that occasionally suffers from OBJ’s presence. OBJ also appears on apps such as Instagram, Tik Tok, Facebook, and many others. If their devices or app versions aren’t compatible with a special character or emoji, OBJ will likely appear.

Why does “OBJ in a box” appear in WordPress?

Most of the time, OBJ is the result of copying text from MS Word into your WordPress text editor. MS Word and other enriched text processing programs have quite a bit more code going on behind the scenes than most browser text editors.

As a result, when you copy text, it carries over all of this extra “junk” code. When a WordPress text editor can’t recognize the additional code as any specific character, it may display an OBJ in a box to signal unrecognized code on the text.

OBJ also appears when copying from other word processing programs and other programs from which you copy your text.

How to remove “OBJ in a box” from your WordPress post?

There are several ways to remove OBJ from your text. These are the three easiest and quickest ones.

1. Paste your text without format (works in popular browsers with an OS-dependent keyboard shortcut)

Paste as plain text using CTRL + Shift + V on Windows when editing in Chrome, Edge or Firefox. On Mac, the rather long CMD + Option + Shift + V shortcut does the same, regardless of the browser.

Pasting as plain text removes formatting and additional code. It should get rid of the OBJ character.

2. Retype the title field or body text (any browser)

Select the text containing the OBJ character, delete it, and retype it. Or replace it after selecting it.

3. Paste the text from a notepad (any browser)

It may seem overkill for such a simple issue, but it’s another possible solution.

  1. Copy the text from your title field or body, then paste it into your notepad program

  1. Copy the text from the notepad, then paste it into the title field or body of your post

Much like pasting as plain text, Notepads strip additional formatting code and what you get is simple word characters without added flair. Pasting the stripped-down text back into your editor will eliminate the OBJ character.

Conclusion

“OBJ in a box” is a Unicode character that signals that your editor or operating system can’t display a specific character. Often, this character appears when you paste text copied from an enriched text editor program like MS Word.

We explained three simple ways to get rid of it. Whenever you deal with it, you’ll know where it comes from and what to do about it.

Let’s get the ball rolling