Have you a selection made to copy from ?
I ask this as you said it did work if you selected with the lasso tool.
If you want to copy everything on a layer try using Ctrl+A which will select all on the layer then Ctrl+C to copy
Yes, the lasso bit works, but consider a text box - if I lasso and copy that, it pastes back as rasterized graphic rather than text box. Yesterday, I could copy it as a text box and paste it back in as a text box all without having to copy it as a layer. It is broken functionality that was fine yesterday. I cannot seem to solve the issue. This despite years of using this software.
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That sounds normal to me (although I don't have CS5 installed - just CS6 and CC2017) .
If you want to duplicate the text - right click on the layer and Duplicate Layer (or press Ctrl+J) - then move/resize as required
Yes, it looks like I'm going to have to do it that way for now. Looking around the various forums it would appear to be not uncommon. Thanks for replying.