WP Calais Auto Tagger

With the Calais Auto Tagger plugin, you’ll never have to think of tags for your posts again. The plugin uses the Open Calais API to perform semantic analysis of your post text and suggest tags for you. The plugin adds a new “Get Tag Suggestions” button to your post interface which retrieves the suggestions. Adding the suggested tags takes just a click.

Calais Auto Tagger

The Calais Auto Tagger requires you have an Open Calais API key. Getting a key is easy as filling out two forms — it’s an instant, automated process. First, go to the Open Calais site and use the “Request API Key” link at the top of the page to create an account. Enter your API key on the Calais Configuration page under the settings menu.

Calais Auto Tagger is compatible with WordPress 2.7+. It is free for personal and commercial use.

Current Version

Version: 2.0
Release Date: 6/10/2015
Download: WP Calais Auto Tagger at the WordPress Codex


This plugin relies on the Open Calais Tags PHP class, which requires PHP 5 web hosting with PHP’s cURL extension enabled (the majority of web hosts).


To install, unzip the archive and upload the files to wp-content/plugins/calais-auto-tagger. Then activate the plugin from the plugins tab of your WordPress administration area. You’ll now have a “Calais API Key” link on your settings menu where you can enter your API key.

What’s new in the latest version?

Rewritten to use jQuery, updated the style a bit to better match the current WordPress admin area, and updated the OpenCalais class bundled with the plugin. The new version of my OpenCalais class suggests more tags using the “Social Tags” API in addition to the entity API.

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  • edoriv

    should every tag have ; at the end of it??? this seems strange to me
    WP 2.7 here

    ps example tags


  • http://www.infinitycarfinance.co.uk Car Guy

    Great plugin, thanks for the work, thinking of tags was a real problem. look forward to some other tips.

  • http://www.doktertomi.com doktertomi

    great plugins… but unfortunately it is not compatible with wordpress 2.7, isn’t it?

  • http://www.onelargeprawn.co.za/ onelargeprawn

    Great stuff! Thanks Dan 🙂

  • Hermann

    Dan one post here also!
    The plugin doesn’t work, i press the “get tags” buttin and nothing happens…. WP 2.7.1

  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    To be clear, this plugin works fine with WP 2.7.1. If it’s not for you, you don’t have PHP 5 or cURL, which are listed as requirements.

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  • http://www.uncleboob.com uncleboob

    The plugin gives me an error in the new wordpress 2.8RC1:

    Parse error: syntax error, unexpected T_CONST, expecting T_OLD_FUNCTION or T_FUNCTION or T_VAR or ‘}’ in /home/www/kunden/uncleboob.de/wp-content/plugins/calais-auto-tagger/opencalais.php on line 17

    Just wanted to let you know.


  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    That’s because you don’t have PHP 5 unclenoob, not because you’re on 2.8. PHP 5 is a requirement.

  • http://www.maximbilliards.com Terrie

    I have been using the calias tagger for awhile now, but since I upgraded to wordpress 2.8 it isn’t working any suggestion?

  • http://nsm.org.in/ Pratik Sinha

    Same issue as terrie, calais tagger doesn’t work with wp 2.8, I click on the Get Tags button, but no tags are fetched/displayed. Is there going to be a fix for this?

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  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    Now updated for WP 2.8.

  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    Dan, if you get a moment, could you let me know where I’m going wrong?

    I’ve used both this and the archive tagger for a long time. (OK, to be honest, had them /installed/ for a long time, I’ve been v.bad at tagging posts at all the last nine months or so. I originally went through all my old posts, auto-tagged them, then cleaned up some of the tags.)

    Anyway, I believe I’m on PHP5 and have cURL enabled; I have WordPress 2.8 installed, and the latest version of both plugins. I write in English, and believe my Calais API key to be correct.
    However, whether I run the archive auto-tagger, or click the get tags button whilst writing/editing a new/old post, no tags are returned. No error messages either. I’ve tried the get tags button on a few different, medium to long posts, in case the subject matter wasn’t providing enough material for tagging.
    With the auto tagger, no response at all, and with the archive auto tagger, it displays Tagged post #6: Tagged post #7: Tagged post #6: (I’ve obviously removed line breaks, and the tagged post #6: carries on for another 8 screens, before I pressed escape.)

    Could you let me know if I’ve goofed up somewhere here, or if there is some sort of debug mode I can use – if the output would be of any use to you.

  • http://www.alldietoffers.com Paul

    Hi Dan

    Using WP 2.82 with calais auto tagger. When I click button no tags are returned. Any ideas please?


  • Dan Grossman

    Paul, if this is the site you entered as your website when commenting, it doesn’t look like there’s much to tag. Calais picks out people, places, companies, and other big topics. None of those kinds of things appear in ingredient lists.

  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    Dan, did you get a chance to read my comment above? In case it isn’t clear, your plugins worked well when I last tried them (probably closer to a year or so now), but currently aren’t returning anything when asked to suggest tags.

  • Dan Grossman

    I tested this plugin on 2.8.1. It returned tags. In fact, it returned 32 tags for one of my longer posts. If it’s not working for you, you’ll need to figure out why yerself 🙂

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  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    I’d hoped you would be able to give me a small clue as to which direction to look, or perhaps some verbose debugging mode. Never mind.

    Think I may have found the issue, which probably applies to a few other users with PHP5 CURL etc. all ticked off, but find the plugin isn’t returning tags.
    You’ll just need to guess it yourself 🙂
    Seriously, let me check a few other blogs I run tomorrow, and I’ll let you know.

  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    It looks to me as though you need to have the post open in Visual, not HTML viewing mode, if the Get Tags button returns nothing. Other sites seem to work with either Visual or HTML selected, but my main blog would only return tags when in HTML editting mode. Hope this helps a few others that are searching for the reason why this plugin wasn’t functioning 100%

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  • http://www.bassfishingmastery.com Rick

    Love the plugin. However one feature that would be nice is that I use some automated feeds and auto-poster and the only way I can get tags is to go back and hit get tags on each feed post. A nice option would be to have option on setup of it automactically getting and adding.
    Of course, still want the choice, since on original posts, like being able to select.
    Thanks a ton for all your work on this.

  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    @Rick, if you read through the older comments here, you’ll find Dan wasn’t up for this sort of feature, as the last person to request it also used feeds and auto-generating posts. Not a criticism on my part, just giving you a heads up on previous enquiry and answer.

  • http://www.uncleboob.com uncleboob

    Ohh noo! I just registered myself at Calais and did all of the clicking and stuff – just to find out that i.e. German language is not supported. I think on my way to the registeration I could have read it somewhere but still…

  • http://blog.peculiarplace.com Ed

    Just tried to activate WP Calais Auto Tagger Version 1.2 and got this error:

    Parse error: syntax error, unexpected T_CONST, expecting T_OLD_FUNCTION or T_FUNCTION or T_VAR or ‘}’ in /home/peculiarblog/blog.peculiarplace.com/wp-content/plugins/calais-auto-tagger/opencalais.php on line 17

    Note: I am using WordPress 2.8.4 and also have PHP5 (hosted on Dreamhost if that makes a difference)

  • Dan Grossman

    That error means you are using PHP4, Ed. Same as for everyone else that saw that error. You probably have an option to use PHP4 or PHP5 with your host and need to change it.

  • http://blog.peculiarplace.com Ed

    I’ve gone back and double checked and PHP5 is definitely in use, in fact, As of September 2008, support for PHP4 was discontinued on Dreamhost. It’s no longer even a choice in the domain setup edit and I migrated all of my domains to PHP 5 back in the summer of 2008.

  • stella

    When i click “Get Tags” nothing appear. Please advise what to do. Thanks!

  • Doug

    Archive tagger not working with 2.8 — no tags are returning to posts. Same issue as Chris Merriman. Got what the specs say I need. Any plans to fix the bug?

  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    I believe we may get into the definition of a bug here. To be fair, with a free plugin, that the author can’t replicate on his own setup, troubleshooting would be difficult.
    I’d guess that ruling out the obvious causes would be a good idea – temporarily disable ALL other non WP Calais plugins, maybe even try changing themes, just in case. Re-run archive auto tagger. If it now works, abort the process. Now change themes back to your original. If archive auto-tagger still works, start re-enabling those other plugins one by one, each time obviously testing if auto-tagging still works. If/when you hit the jackpot of the guilty plugin, PLEASE post back. I intend to do this myself, but a lot of other tasks to complete first.

  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    There are definitely some bugs with the auto tagger and the latest minor releases of WP. I hope to have time to revisit the two Calais plugins this week to fix them up again.

  • james

    Hi Dan. Quick question, if I use your plug in, how are you managing tags with the WP database?

    Are they being classified by their respective category, e.g., NBC is identified as a company by placing it in a company column?, or are all the tags being dumped in a single cell for each post that Calais processes?

    Basically, I’m trying to get a handle on how structured the data is once the text has been processed and tags applied to it. Ultimately, I’m interested in if I’m left with a structured database that I can export for additional processing.

    Thanks so much.


  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    James, tags are a built-in feature of WordPress. How it is structured is managed by WordPress and has changed over time, I can’t even tell you since I have not looked recently. This plugin just adds the tags to the form while you’re writing/editing a post, and they’re submitted the same as tags you typed by hand into the tags box. That’s how it worked before something broke the interface, at least. The archiver plugin uses WordPress’s API functions for adding tags to a post, it does not directly touch the database at all.

    In ether case, tags in WordPress are just words. There is no metadata attached to them, like the fact that a tag is a business.

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  • http://www.datacenta.de Dennis


    When i click “Get Tag Suggestions” nothing appear. I am using:

    Version 2.8.5 DE-Edition
    Calais Auto Tagger Version 1.3 DE-Edition

  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    The Open Calais service is for English language text only.

  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    Just wondered what the differences between 1.2 and the newly released 1.3 might be?

    Couldn’t find any notes here, or a changelog tab in WP plugin admin interface.

    Just in case the update was aimed at resolving the problems with it only working for people using the WYSIWYG editor for posts, I still can’t get it working when using (as default) the HTML view. (still hangs forever (well more than 5 minutes at least) with “Getting suggestions…” – tried with 4 reasonably long, un-tagged, posts).
    As soon as I switched to Visual edit mode for the post, and once again attempted to click Get Tag Suggestions, it worked fine.

    Archive auto tagger still also failing (whereas it used to return suggestions a long time back).
    Still slightly strange error in that it seems to flick back and forth between different posts before failing…
    for example

    Archive Tagger
    Status: Tagging in progress…
    Tagged post #6:

    Tagged post #7:

    Tagged post #6:

    Tagged post #6:

    Tagged post #6:

    Tagged post #6:

    Tagged post #6:

    Tagged post #6:

    Tagged post #6:

    Tagged post #6:

    etc. etc.

    Understand this may be due to using a more recent version of WP. Neither report meant as a moan, just a FYI, in case you’re looking for feedback on new code/existing problems.

  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    ooops, just read your front page re. changes with 1.3
    Sorry for not checking properly first, though wonder if you might get a chance to see why it doesn’t work still in HTML editing mode for posts?

  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    If/when you get the time, it might be an idea to put some extra error handling in the plugin as well?
    For example, instead of the following, something that a random blogger would be more likely to understand.

    Fatal error: Uncaught exception ‘OpenCalaisException’ with message ‘Calais Backend-Server is Busy. Please try again later.’ in /home2/MADEupNAME/public_html/wp-content/plugins/calais-auto-tagger/opencalais.php:109 Stack trace: #0 /home2/MADEupNAME/public_html/wp-content/plugins/calais-auto-tagger/opencalais.php(55): OpenCalais->callAPI(‘The same day (2…’) #1 /home2/MADEupNAME/public_html/wp-content/plugins/calais-auto-tagger/calais_auto_tagger.php(152): OpenCalais->getEntities(‘The same day (2…’) #2 /home2/MADEupNAME/public_html/wp-includes/plugin.php(339): calais_gettags(”) #3 /home2/MADEupNAME/public_html/wp-admin/admin-ajax.php(1352): do_action(‘calais_gettags’

    Array) #4 {main} thrown in /home2/MADEupNAME/public_html/wp-content/plugins/calais-auto-tagger/opencalais.php on line 109

    (my own fault, I was attempting to query calais’ servers on posts in batches of six at a time (decided to manually go through a post at a time, instead of waiting for auto archive to be reborn 🙂 )

  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    It works for me with the visual editor on or off, which is surprising since I don’t doubt that the code I was using to force the visual editor to save from WP 2.6 would be broken by now. If I figure out the right way to do it I’ll be sure to update the version number again so you’ll see the upgrade note in your plugin list. WP’s ability to install and update plugins itself is great.

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  • http://www.macnghtowl.com Gene Steinberg

    Your new version is, frankly, less useful than the previous one. When I set a scheduled post, and choose tags, the tags are deleted when the post is life. I then have to redo the tags, which is an utter waste of time. A bug I presume.

    Can you look into it?


  • http://chrismerriman.com Chris Merriman

    @Gene. Thanks for the heads up. I hadn’t noticed this was happening, but I happen to have scheduled posts for the next fortnight – upon checking the ones already live, the tags have gone on my blog too. Oops.

  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    A new version has been published to fix the bugs with the scheduled posts and visual editor. Please comment if you still have problems and I’ll look again.

  • http://www.technightowl.com Gene Steinberg

    Thanks. We’ll know tonight if this fix works.


  • http://www.jerseysmarts.com/ Joe

    When I deactivate the plug-in, the entire “tag” interface is eliminated from the Add New Post page.

    Also, when the plug-in is active, I cannot simply enter a term in the tag box and hit “enter” to add that tag because by hitting “enter,” the plug-in forces the entry to be published. Finally, when I try to add multiple tags to the tag box and separate them with a comma, they are entered as one, gigantic tag.

    I would have deactivated this plug-in, but as I first wrote – the entire tagging box is eliminated when I do so!

  • http://www.dangrossman.info Dan

    Wish I had any idea how that happened, Joe. There’s no code in the plugin that changes WordPress’s tag stuff. It just sets the CSS on the tag box to display:none to hide it, and obviously that wouldn’t have a permanent effect.