Break URL Correctly

Break URL Correctly

For InDesign CS6, CC, and CC 2014

Long website addresses (URLs) can be problematic to typeset when they run over to a second line.

They can cause dreadful spacing, as here:


If you’re not careful, an incorrect hyphen can inadvertently be inserted at the end of the line, as here:


(That hyphen at the end of the second line is not meant to be there – InDesign has decided to add it automatically, thereby destroying the URL!)

Finally, there are generally accepted rules about where a URL may break at the end of the line, and if you leave it to InDesign, it will normally get it wrong.

According to the Chicago Manual of Style (15th edition), a URL must never break after the following characters: ~ . , – _ ? # % and /.

(I think the logic here is that it must be made obvious whether the URL has ended, or whether it continues to the next line. If the URL is broken after a period, or question mark, for instance, the reader might mistakenly think that the end of the line is the end of the URL.)

The Break URL Correctly script solves these problems.

To use, select the URL in InDesign, and run the script. The script will identify the optimal place (from a spacing point-of-view) to break the URL, taking into account Chicago Manual’s rules regarding where a URL may be broken. It then inserts a “discretionary line break” special character, causing the URL to break in the best way. (Sometimes, from the point of view of correct word-division, you may want to break the URL slightly differently. In that case, simply copy-paste the discretionary line break character at the end of the line to achieve correct word division.)

Break URL Correctly solves the problem of erroneous hyphens, bad spacing, and incorrect division of a long URL. The script is much quicker than manually inserting a discretionary line break in various places in an attempt to find optimal spacing, while at the same time trying to recall where line breaks are forbidden.

For only $29, Break URL Correctly is a great timesaver for anyone working with long URLs in InDesign!



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