When I have a group of tags in a tagset, I notice that when I'm trying to add tags to a contact I can't see the list of tags (as I would if it was a standard CiviCRM multi-select field).

Instead all I have is the option of keying characters in and seeing possible matches. I guess that approach is OK if all my users know the tags well, but for a new user who doesn't know the tags it's a bit daft, and I'll end up having to produce a cheat sheet with all the tags on it.

Is there a reason why these tagset fields are different from conventional multi-select fields? Is there a simple way to change them so that the tags do appear in a drop-down as well as responding to keyed characters?

I'm working with CiviCRM 4.7.24 and Wordpress 4.8.2, and I see the same behaviour regardless of whether I add tags from the contact summary screen or by editing the contact record.

  • What version of Civi and a CMS are you running? Also, are you adding tags from the contact summary/record or from the edit screen?
    – RayWright
    Oct 2, 2017 at 3:28
  • Thanks. I've edited the question to provide the detail that you've requested. Essentially no difference in behaviour regardless of whether I edit the contact record or just click on Tags from the summary screen.
    – Graham
    Oct 2, 2017 at 4:29
  • Could it be that the user doesn't have permission to see the tags?
    – naomi
    Oct 2, 2017 at 9:54
  • In this instance the 'user' is me, and I have full admin access. I was also able to replicate on dmaster.demo.civicrm.org. I regard this as a bug and will log an issue accordingly.
    – Graham
    Oct 3, 2017 at 10:40

2 Answers 2


By design, tagsets are an auto complete drop down. However, there is one thing we could do to improve the usability: make the list open immediately and show the complete list of tags. I don't really see a downside to that change so I'll make a PR and see if anyone objects.


UPDATE: The feature has been accepted and will be released with CiviCRM 5.3.0.

enter image description here

  • 1
    I think this approach greatly improves the utility of tagsets. Thanks.
    – Graham
    Jun 5, 2018 at 15:35

Not an answer - but a follow up, I wanted to include an image. I checked out the demo and was wondering if I missed what you referred to originally. On the tags tab, I see the attached. Where the list is checkable list. Is this not what you are seeing, perhaps I misunderstood. enter image description here

  • Yes, I see this too. These visible tags are not in a tagset. Only tags in a tagset get hidden from the user.
    – Graham
    Oct 5, 2017 at 10:11

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