I'm trying to copy and paste a chat from Messages.app into an email (macOS Mojave 10.14.5, Messages 12.0 (5500)). When I go into Messages and select all using command+A, the entire conversation is highlighted as if it's all selected. However, when I then copy and paste, only the very first selected message gets pasted. I tried selecting manually with the mouse, using Edit > Select All, and doing all of the above with the message opened in a separate window, but none of those changed the result.

I came up with one kludgey solution of making a PDF to share by selecting File > Print… and then PDF > Save as PDF. That creates a PDF that can be shared but copying and pasting from it remains a mess.

If I'm not mistaken, this was possible in earlier versions of macOS (I seem to even remember the formatting pasting quite nicely).

So how do you copy the entire chat in Messages?

  • 1
    Scroll up before copying
    – anki
    Jul 10, 2019 at 4:49
  • @ankiiiiiii OK, that seems to be working. As that's pretty much the opposite of intuitive, any clue why that's necessary?
    – Vincent
    Jul 10, 2019 at 16:01

1 Answer 1


Scroll up before copying.

I just observed it. Copy-pasted in textedit and used a service to count words which increased every time I scrolled up. Also scrolling up can be sluggish at times due to media, previews etc., so it might be rendering it from another format the source of which I presume is /Users/me/Library/Messages/Archive/01-03-2019/My Friend on 01-03-2019 at 01.11.05.ichat

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