I am trying to use the WordPress pages but WordPress is overwriting certain characters.
the '>' character is turned into '& gt;'
why is WordPress changing these characters? is it possible to turn character conversion off for certain pages?
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What you are doing is incredibly dangerous. You can break your site horribly, or have your entire server hacked. With a PHP in content plugin there is nothing stopping an editor from copy pasting a PHP shell in to the content editor and taking full control of your site.
If you have content on a page and want to include custom code, you should use one of the following:
There are many alternatives, all well documented and with hundreds of questions asking how to do them from new developers on this site alone. I encourage you to ask!!
You should NEVER use plugins that let you put PHP code inside your posts. If I were to do this, I would face immediate dismissal from my job. I urge you to consider alternatives.