Viktor Petersson logo


Enough is Enough - Killing the Annoying macOS Word Definition Pop-Up Once and For All

06 DEC • 2023 2 minutes

Ever been deep in your workflow on your Mac, meticulously selecting text in Apple Mail or iTerm, only to be ambushed by some random word definition pop-up? Yeah, me too. And frankly, it’s been driving me up the wall. It’s like playing Whac-A-Mole with dictionary entries you never asked for – the same annoyance as right-clicking a word and accidentally hitting “Look Up”.

I scoured forums and guides for ages, trying to find a way to kill this feature. It felt like a quest without a map, because, let’s face it, who knows where to look for such obscure settings?

Today, I hit my breaking point. I dove back into the digital trenches and finally struck gold in a blog post. Turns out, this infuriating feature has been lurking in macOS for several iterations. Why, Apple, why?

But here’s the silver lining – the way to reclaim your peace:

  1. Storm into System Preferences like a boss.
  2. Slam that Trackpad option.
  3. Hunt down “Look up & data detection”.
  4. Ruthlessly switch it from “Tap with three fingers” to “Off”.

Boom! No more pop-up sneak attacks. Sanity, welcome back to my digital realm.

Found an error or typo? File PR against this file.