Ask Mac Automator: Copy and Paste Safari Data and Text

Hi, I’m trying to figure out a Keyboard Maestro macro that would 1. Copy the text selected (for example a paragraph from a feature article in Safari) and then 2. Also copy the web link to that article. you would then be able to share this via email or messages. In iOS, this is achievable through apps such as Clips and Drafts, but i can’t make it happen on the Mac using Keyboard Maestro. Can you help? Thanks for all your work BTW!

I definitely agree that the iOS apps, Clips and Drafts do indeed make it easy to clip selected text and pasting the Safari source data for that text.

The OS X Share feature can also copy a Safari title and URL and allow you to share that data to a supported application. Go to System Preferences > Extensions to activate extensions.

mac_share_feature

However, Apple’s Share feature seems to come up a little short, because it won’t copy and paste selected text as part of the sharing. Keyboard Maestro solves that problem.

Keyboard Maestro Solution

The macro is a little complex to create. I’ve made the macro available for download to install in your KM library. involves use variable actions.

The macro involves using variable actions. Variables hold data that you can access when needed.

The following macro copies the selected text, then uses a Prompt for User Input action that automatically sets variables for the title and URL of the frontmost Safari webpage. That information is presented to the user for copying to the clipboard or pasting  directly in another application.

Keyboard Maestro

The macro of course can be triggered using a hotkey or selecting in the KM Global palette or status menu.

If you use this macro a lot, you might consider mapping the hotkey trigger to a BetterTouchTool finger gesture for quicker use.

I’ll see about writing a longer article about using variable actions.

[Tweet “Here’s a neat solution for quickly copying and sharing selected text and Safari data.”]

Your Solution?

Let us know if you have a better solution for grabbing and sharing copied text and Safari data. I’m pretty sure there’s other options out there.

Bakari Chavanu

Bakari Chavanu is a freelance writer and long-time Mac users. He’s written hundreds articles about Mac applications and Mac automation for general users. He’s also the author of “The Awesome Guide to Mac Automation” (MakeUseOf.com).

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