Will removing all tags from a Post move the Post to the Trash?

Our site had over 5,000 tags, many of them were not assigned to any Posts, had typos, or were irrelevant. We removed a little over 4,000 but then noticed that about half of our Posts were moved to the Trash, and when I tried restoring one of them, the post had no content (only the image).

Could removing the tags have anything to do with this? I would think that the Posts would remain untagged (if all tags were among the removed ones).

1 Answer 1


No, deleting tags, or any other terms, does not remove any posts. It shouldn't even "touch" posts table. All it does is (you can see the code yourself: https://core.trac.wordpress.org/browser/tags/4.9.6/src/wp-includes/taxonomy.php#L1664):

  • remove given term
  • remove this term from all posts
  • refresh caches

But... There are some hooks in it, so some plugin or theme can modify this behavior...

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