Search with question mark fails with unhelpful error message

I notice that searching for a sentence with a question mark in the query always fails, with an error message suggesting that it might be a transient error.

I wonder, surely there must be a way to escape the ‘?’ character so it doesn’t cause a system hickup? Especially as exclamation marks seem to work fine.

In case you’re wondering, I don’t usually input queries using any kind of punctuation, but I often copy entire sentences from the forum, and they sometimes contain punctuation that causes problems (especially with French).