I want to change the wording in the Default thumbnail metabox to 'Set default thumbnail' instead of 'Set featured image'. How can I do this?

2 Answers 2


This is usually what I go with:

/** Use "Featured Image" Box As A Custom Box **/
function customposttype_image_box() {   
    remove_meta_box('postimagediv', 'page', 'side');
    add_meta_box('postimagediv', __('Set Dat Image'), 'post_thumbnail_meta_box', 'page', 'side');

add_action('do_meta_boxes', 'customposttype_image_box');

/** Change "Featured Image" box Link Text **/
function custom_admin_post_thumbnail_html( $content ) {
    global $post;
    if($post->post_type == 'page')
        $content = str_replace( __( 'Set featured image' ), __( 'Upload dat Image' ), $content);
        $content = str_replace( __( 'Remove featured image' ), __( 'Remove dat image' ), $content);

    return $content;
add_filter( 'admin_post_thumbnail_html', 'custom_admin_post_thumbnail_html' );
  • This is what I needed. I also needed to modify the text 'Remove featured image' if an image is already set.
    – urok93
    Dec 3, 2013 at 6:02
  • Also, what would happen if that string is translated into other languages?
    – urok93
    Dec 3, 2013 at 6:04
  • I updated my post to include a post_type conditional. The core problem with this is that it changes the text via javascript, so when you choose a featured image it changes the text right on the spot, same as when you remove it. My function will only work when the page is loaded. Maybe somebody else has a better workaround for this.
    – Howdy_McGee
    Dec 3, 2013 at 15:01
  • Yes that's true, would love to know of a better workaround if anyone has it.
    – urok93
    Dec 3, 2013 at 19:15
  • @Howdy_McGee that is correct with JS issue. I think the only way to do this is via Javascript.
    – Anh Tran
    Dec 4, 2013 at 2:02

Use media_view_strings to filter the default text.

Use the below in the active theme's function.php file

add_filter( 'media_view_strings', function( $strings ) {
   $strings['setFeaturedImageTitle'] = __( 'Set default thumbnail' );
   $strings['setFeaturedImage']    = __( 'Set default thumbnail' );

   return $strings;

Found in WordPress/wp-includes/media.php

  • This works for the lightbox image selection. What I want to edit however is the text in the postimagediv metabox, that's not changing with this code.
    – urok93
    Dec 3, 2013 at 5:14

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