// Tutorial //

clipboard.js: Copy Text to the Clipboard

Published on June 23, 2016
Default avatar
By Alligator.io
Developer and author at DigitalOcean.
clipboard.js: Copy Text to the Clipboard

While we believe that this content benefits our community, we have not yet thoroughly reviewed it. If you have any suggestions for improvements, please let us know by clicking the “report an issue“ button at the bottom of the tutorial.

clipboard.js lets you easily copy text to the clipboard. At 3kb gzipped and no need for Flash, it’s a great lightweight way to allow your visitors to copy bits of text and code on your site.


Install with npm:

  1. npm install clipboard --save

Or get the package from Github and place the clipboard.min.js file manually in your project folder.

Then include the JavaScript file before the closing </body> tag:

<script src="path/to/clipboard.min.js"></script>

Finally, you’ll want to instantiate it. In the following JQuery example we’re instantiating the object for all elements with a class of clipboard:

$( document ).ready(function() {
  var clipboard = new Clipboard('.clipboard');


To use it, either use the data-clipboard-text data attribute:

<button class="clipboard"
   data-clipboard-text="This will be copied">
  Copy this

Or use the data-clipboard-target data attribute:

<span id="copy">This text will be copied</span>

Handling errors

Handle success and error states easily with the success and error custom events:

$( document ).ready(function() {
  clipboard.on('success', function(e) {
    setTimeout(function() {
    }, 2500);

Note: Some browsers don’t support the execCommand API needed for clipboard.js to work properly. The text will still get selected, so a good workaround is to show a message telling the user to hit CTRL+C when an error event is triggered.

If you’ve enjoyed this tutorial and our broader community, consider checking out our DigitalOcean products which can also help you achieve your development goals.

Learn more here

About the authors
Default avatar
Developer and author at DigitalOcean.

Still looking for an answer?

Was this helpful?

This textbox defaults to using Markdown to format your answer.

You can type !ref in this text area to quickly search our full set of tutorials, documentation & marketplace offerings and insert the link!

Hello, any updates/solutions as execCommand is now deprecated?