WordPress Development Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for WordPress developers and administrators. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I am posting Word generated HTML to WordPress via XMLRPC. Before I go to post.php, the format is correctly preserved in the database. TinyMCE performs its magic and I lose quite a few formatting details.
The main issue i am seeing is that <span> tag with style information surrounding other elements are stripped out. I have verified that these tags are indeed removed by TinyMCE and not Kses. Is there a way to prevent TinyMCE from altering the HTML? I have tried

add_filter('tiny_mce_before_init', 'tinymce_init');

function tinymce_init( $init ) {
    $init['extended_valid_elements'] .= ', span[style|id|nam|class|lang]';
$init['verify_html'] = false;
    return $init;

which didn't help. According to TinyMCE documentation, "verify_html"

This option enables or disables the element cleanup functionality. If you set this option to false, all element cleanup will be skipped but other cleanup functionality such as URL conversion will still be executed.

share|improve this question

I couldn't find the extended_valid_elements option in the settings panel for TinyMCE advanced, but adding the following to my functions.php solved it:

function override_mce_options($initArray) {
$opts = '*[*]';
$initArray['valid_elements'] = $opts;
$initArray['extended_valid_elements'] = $opts;
return $initArray;} add_filter('tiny_mce_before_init', 'override_mce_options');    

Source - http://www.leighton.com/blog/stop-tinymce-in-wordpress-3-x-messing-up-your-html-code

share|improve this answer

I almost always use the TinyMCE Advanced plugin - there is an admin page (Settings->TinyMCE Config) that let you add supported tags using the extended_valid_elements option. Simply add span and whatever other tags you don't want removed and enjoy!

share|improve this answer
Thanks, TinyMCE Advanced does exactly the same thing as my code above to add extended_valid_elements. But i will it with the plugin. Maybe I there is a bug some where in my code. – ltfishie May 23 '12 at 5:16
Install it and try it out - if it works, then the problem is your code. If it doesn't, something else is overriding it at the plugin or theme level. – SickHippie May 23 '12 at 16:14
I couldn't find a place in the latest version of TinyMCE Advanced to add elements – Nicola Peluchetti Oct 24 '15 at 13:33
That's not surprising, since this post is 3 1/2 years old. – SickHippie Oct 24 '15 at 23:29

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.