in reply to Storing multi-line form data in a flat file?

Ok I make the form field with
use CGI;<br> my ($q) = new CGI;<br> print $q->textarea('description','',20,50);<br>
then when the form comes back I need to encode q$->param('description'); some how so I can store it.

All I need to know is how to encode 'description' so that special characters wont do funny things to my flat files. I also want to display this information the way it was submitted so I cant just remove the them.

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