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execute failed: Incorrect string value: '\xD6sterl...' with mariadb and perl DBD



I'm trying to use perl-DBD to write a buffer of text that contains an email with umlauts and other non-ASCII characters to a joomla database and having a problem.

DBD::mysql::st execute failed: Incorrect string value: '\xD6sterl...' for column `lsv5webstage`.`xuxgc_content`.`fulltext` at row 1 at /home/alerts/scripts_linstage/AdvisoryTest.pm line 373.

I'm not familiar enough with how encoding works to fully understand what the problem is. This is a fedora29 system with mariadb-10.3.12 and joomla-3.9.

Apparently the '\xD6' is an O with an umlaut in "Sebastian �sterlund". I read something about utf8 not being able to handle 4-char, but I don't fully understand.

I found the following reference online which talks about changing the encoding type from utf8 to utf8mb4, but the tables all appear to already be using that encoding:

    > SHOW VARIABLES WHERE Variable_name LIKE 'character\_set\_%' OR
    Variable_name LIKE 'collation%';
    | Variable_name            | Value              |
    | character_set_client     | utf8mb4            |
    | character_set_connection | utf8mb4            |
    | character_set_database   | utf8mb4            |
    | character_set_filesystem | binary             |
    | character_set_results    | utf8mb4            |
    | character_set_server     | utf8mb4            |
    | character_set_system     | utf8               |
    | collation_connection     | utf8mb4_unicode_ci |
    | collation_database       | utf8mb4_unicode_ci |
    | collation_server         | utf8mb4_unicode_ci |

execute failed: Incorrect string value: '\xD6sterl...' with mariadb and perl DBD
a novice perl programmer
I'm not sure it's helpful, but this is the insert statement I'm using in my perl code:

        my $sql                 = <<EOF;
INSERT INTO xuxgc_content (title, alias, introtext, `fulltext`, state, catid, created, created_by, created_by_alias, modified, modified_by, checked_out, checked_out_time, publish_up, publish_down, images, urls, attribs, version, ordering, metakey, metadesc, metadata, access, hits, language) VALUES ($title, "$title_alias", $introText, $fullText, $state, $catid, $created, $created_by, $created_by_alias, $modified, $modified_by, $checked_out, $checked_out_time, $publish_up, $publish_down, $images, $urls, $attribs, $version, $ordering, $metakey, $metadesc, $metadata, $access, $hits, $language);

        my $sth = $dbh->prepare($sql);

I don't recall having this problem in the past, and this script has been in use for quite a while.

What am I doing wrong?

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