Function and usage of is_object_in_term() in wordpress


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    The is_object_in_term() function in WordPress is a utility for determining if a specific object (like a post or a link) is associated with a given term or set of terms within a specified taxonomy. This function is useful in theme and plugin development for WordPress. Here's a detailed breakdown of its functionality and usage:

    Function Signature

    is_object_in_term( int $object_id, string $taxonomy, int|string|int[]|string[] $terms = null ): bool|WP_Error


    • Primary Functionality: The function checks if the specified object is associated with any of the given terms in a particular taxonomy. This is typically used to determine if a post, or any other object type, is categorized under certain terms (like categories or tags).
    • Term Matching: It compares the given terms against the object’s terms by checking term IDs, names, and slugs. If the terms are provided as integers, it only checks against term IDs.
    • Handling When No Terms Provided: If no specific terms are provided (i.e., $terms is null), the function checks if the object is associated with any term in the specified taxonomy.


    1. $object_id (int, required): The ID of the object. This could be a post ID, link ID, or similar.
    2. $taxonomy (string, required): The name of the taxonomy to check within. This could be 'category', 'post_tag', or any custom taxonomy.
    3. $terms (int|string|int[]|string[], optional): This can be a single term ID, name, slug, or an array of these. It defines the terms to check against. Default is null, meaning any term in the specified taxonomy will be considered.

    Return Value

    • Success: Returns true if the object is associated with the given term(s) in the specified taxonomy.
    • Failure: Returns false if the object is not associated with the given term(s), or WP_Error on input error (such as invalid taxonomy).

    Sample Usage

    Here's an example of how is_object_in_term() might be used in a WordPress theme or plugin:

    $post_id = get_the_ID(); // Gets the current post ID
    $taxonomy = 'category';
    $terms = array('news', 'updates'); // Array of term names
    if ( is_object_in_term( $post_id, $taxonomy, $terms ) ) {
        echo "This post is in either the 'news' or 'updates' category.";
    } else {
        echo "This post is not in the 'news' or 'updates' category.";

    In this example, the function checks if the current post belongs to either the 'news' or 'updates' categories and displays a message accordingly. This is a simple demonstration; in actual use, the function might be part of more complex conditional logic.

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