How to use keyboard shortcuts to manage comments in WordPress

WordPress has a functionality that allows you and other registered users with permissions to moderate comments to use keyboard shortcuts to approve, unapprove, delete, etc. comments. Keyboard shortcuts are disabled by default. You can activate them for each user individually. To do this, in the admin panel click on the Users tab on the left and open the profile of the particular user by clicking on their username in the table that's displayed. On the page with the profile settings mark the checkbox for Keyboard Shortcuts.

Now when you go to the Comments section of the admin panel you can use keyboard shortcuts. Before you can perform an action you have to select the comment (with the j or k keyboard buttons as listed below). Here are the keyboard buttons you can use and what they do respectively:

  • j - selects/highlights the first comment in the table. Pressing it again selects the next one down the list.

  • k - selects the comment that's up in the list in relation to the currently selected comment.

  • a - approves the selected comment.

  • u - unapproves the selected comment.

  • s - marks the selected comment as spam.

  • d - sends the selected comment to the trash.

  • z - restores a selected comment that's in the spam or trash folder.

  • r - opens the settings for inline reply.

  • q - opens the quick edit options of the selected comment.

  • e - opens the edit form of the selected comment.

To perform bulk actions using keyboard shortcuts, first select the comment with the j or k button, then press the x button to mark its checkbox. Then repeat the same procedure until you mark all the comments with which you want to perform bulk actions. Then press and hold the Shift key and press one of the action keys (e.g. a for approving comments, u for unapproving, s for sending them to the spam folder, t for sending them to the trash, z for restoring). The action buttons themselves are the same; the only difference is that t is used for deleting instead of d.

For some more details you can also check out the tutorial on how to use keyboard shortcuts in managing comments in WordPress, as well as the following infographic:

WordPress Keyboard Cheat Sheet

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