The ability to type a long dash has disappeared from Catalina. Using the + - key no longer works unlike previous versions. Now I just get a beep, and no EM dash.

This is across several apps including native macOS ones, and 3rd party like Adobe's.

How do I type a long "Em" dash in Catalina?

  • Please don't use such unnecessary block letters when other alternatives are available. Thanks to @pkamb for the revision too! Keyboard icons & terminology on meta.apple to the rescue.
    – anki
    Commented Oct 15, 2019 at 22:46
  • 1
    Doesn’t a double dash automatically convert to an em dash? Just like three periods convert to a single ellipses Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 4:08
  • Apple doesn't use Command for such things, only option and option shift. You are mistaken about how you used to do this. Commented Aug 30, 2020 at 18:14

2 Answers 2


The Em Dash keyboard shortcut is now: Shift Option -


On my Catalina laptop, Shift Option - did not do anything until I switched back the Input Sources to U.S that I had set to U+ (Unicode Hex Input).

  • Uncode Hex doesn't make special characters that way, instead you hold down the option key and type the hex code. For em dash it is 2014 Commented Aug 30, 2020 at 18:23

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