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WordPress – Open links in comments in a new Window or Tab

WordPress – Open links in comments in a new Window or Tab

WordPress is a great Content Management System, not just for bloggers …

One of the downsides I have run into is that links in comments automatically get reformatted and the HTML “target=_blank” gets stripped away so a link in a comment will always open in the same window as you website. Personally I prefer such a link to open in a new window …

So in this article a simple piece of code to make links in WordPress comments automatically open in a new window or a new tab by automatically adding “target=_blank” to links in comments.

Modify Comments to have links in comments open in a new window or tab

For this we are going add a filter in the functions.php file of your theme.
I prefer this kind of an approach over a plugin, since I’m fully in control of what’s happening … you might understand this reasoning when you’ve used plugins before that were abandoned after a while …

Add the following code to your functions.php of your theme:

function t4a_comment_links_in_new_window($text)
    return str_replace('<a', '<a target="_blank"', $text);

add_filter('comment_text', 't4a_comment_links_in_new_window');

This does two things:

1. Creates a function t4a_comment_links_in_new_window  which takes a string and replaces every ocurance of <a (from the HTML A HFER tag) and replaces it with <a target="_blank".

2. Add this function to thecomment_text  filter so that it’s being called when a comment is being filtered.

The result is that any link in a comment will now open in a new window or a new tab.

Please note that this can also be achieved with plugins like for example No Follow for External Link (the name is a bit misleading, bt it does the trick).

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There are 4 comments. You can read them below.
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  • Apr 11, 2019 - 6:08 PM - JJ Smith - Author: Comment Link

    Hi, I just wanted to thank you for this solution to open links in comments in a new window or tab. It was quick and easy to complete. Keep up the great work. Thanks JJ


    JJ Smith

    • Apr 12, 2019 - 4:37 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

      Thanks JJ for taking the time to post a Thank-You – it’s much appreciated and glad to hear it was helpful for you! 



  • Sep 18, 2020 - 12:02 PM - Milly Comment Link

    hey thanks for this! It was exactly what we needed :)



    • Sep 19, 2020 - 4:36 AM - Hans - Author: Comment Link

      Awesome! Thanks Milly for taking the time to post a thank-you – it is much appreciated 



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