When are you supposed to use escape instead of encodeURI / encodeURIComponent?

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When are you supposed to use escape instead of encodeURI / encodeURIComponent?

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When encoding a query string to be sent to a web server - when do you use escape() and when do you use encodeURI() or encodeURIComponent():

Use escape:

escape("% +&=");

use encodeURI() / encodeURIComponent()


It's worth pointing out that encodeURIComponent("var1=value1&var2=value2") is not the typical use case. That example will encode the = and &, which is probably not what was intended! encodeURIComponent is typically applied separately to just the value in each key value pair (the part after each =). –
Timothy Shields
Mar 14, 2014 at 20:45
do you need to do anything to the key? What if it has an = in it? (is that even possible?) –
Jun 9, 2014 at 21:49
@Mala I'm still new to web programming in general, but what I've used in my limited experience is to encode the key and the value separately, ensuring the '=' stays: var params = encodeURIComponent(key) + '=' + encodeURIComponent(value); - Maybe someone else knows a better way. –
Jun 28, 2014 at 21:17
@nedshares I was playing with that, but as far as I can tell the key doesn't seem to be encoded... at least not in the same way. Maybe it's against spec to have an = in the key? –
Jul 1, 2014 at 20:08
Also worth pointing out that recent JavaScript implementations provide the higher-level interfaces URL and URLSearchParams for manipulating URLs and their query strings. –
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