in reply to Encoding confusion with CGI forms

What charset are you setting on the Content-Type header? Browsers should use that charset for form submissions. In my experience, UTF-8 works well. As does windows-1252, which is the iso-8859-1 used by Windows.

There is an accept-charset attribute on the form tag but it is not well supported. Also, with POSTs browsers should include a charset in the HTTP request header but that is also not well supported.

This looks like a good primer: