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5 Messages

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120 Points

Sat, Oct 15, 2011 8:29 PM

Under consideration

2

Elements Organizer: Delete keyword tags from media file on disk

In PSE 8, I have deleted some of the keyword tag placed there by the auto-analyzer. I then told the application to write keyword tags to the files for the files I had changed. When I look at these files using the PSE, the tags are gone, but they are still in the metadata embedded in the file. How can I remove these unwanted tags? Thanks.

Responses

2.1K Messages

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32.2K Points

9 years ago

Where are you seeing the tags appear in the metadata? Within Elements Organizer or in a third party tool?

5 Messages

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120 Points

9 years ago

Thanks for the response. I use the organizer to add or remove a keyword. I then use the PSE feature "file/write keyword tag and properties to the file" to update the file. The organizer reflects these changes. However, if I use Windows and look at the Properties/Details/Tags for the file I find the tags that I had deleted in the organizer are still there. Am I doing something wrong?

2.1K Messages

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32.2K Points

9 years ago

I see the behavior now... It seems that the Organizer isn't deleting the keywords from the file, it is only flagging the keywords so that they are ignored by the Organizer. I know that Bridge does remove keywords from the file itself and I tested Lightroom and found that it also correctly removes the keywords. I'll report this to our engineers.

In the mean time, I can suggest a couple workarounds:
1. Create a copy of the file by using File>Export as New Files
(testing this works for the most part... but I might have discovered another bug... Let me know if you run into any trouble with this option).
2. Open the file in Editor, go to File>File Info and delete the keywords you do not want from the Keywords section under the Description tab.

5 Messages

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120 Points

9 years ago

Thanks for the response. I tried this. The tags that I wanted to remove are removed from the metadata and the ones I wanted to keep are still there. However, when I look at the file in the organizer, none of the tags show up. Additionally, I need to modify tags on several hundred pictures and this method would take too long.

2.1K Messages

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32.2K Points

For working with lots of files, the first workaround will help. You can export many files at once. Thus, once you have set up the keywords the way you want them, selected all the files you've made changes on and Export.

As for the tags that you want to keep no longer showing up in Organizer, I'm a bit curious on the workflow you used to arrive at that point. Were you following workaround #2 above?

5 Messages

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120 Points

9 years ago

I've tried several time to use method #1. I removed the tags in the organizer and then used file>write key words.. I then exported the files using the default settings on the file>export command. I also tried this method w/o using the file>write key words command. The results were the same. The tags were still there. (I wish I could get this result when I write a check!!!)

For method #2 to work, you must first delete the keywords in the organizer and then open the editor and again remove them from the description tab. If you don't remove them first from from the organizer, they come back (maybe from the catalog dB).

158 Messages

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2.2K Points

9 years ago

Hi James,

If you aren't seeing any tags in Organizer even when you have them present in some of your images, you might have missed out importing them.
I guess you can give a try to importing these files again and then doing select all to the button to the Imported Keyword Tags dialog that appears after import.

As of your primary query, even I checked. Organizer cannot delete tags from images.

Thanks
andaleeb

1 Message

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60 Points

8 years ago

Hello,

I'm just wondering if there's any new on this issue? I use elements to manage 10,000+ photos and just realized the "can't remove a tag" issue.

I'm OK with stripping all keyword tags, and using Elements to re-write them - but I don't want to do this until the bug is fixed.

Any ideas if this is something that will be addressed in the next version?

Thanks.

2.1K Messages

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32.2K Points

Unfortunately, I cannot directly answer that question...

5 Messages

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120 Points

8 years ago

You can delete the unwanted tags (i.e. "in-focus," "too dark") from the Elements Organizer and the Organizer will not show them. Elements will not, however, actually remove them from the metadata. I gave up trying to clean up the metadata with Elements and moved my catalog to Lightroom 4. Here I was able to delete the unwanted tag and Lightroom removed them from the metadata.

3 Messages

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80 Points

5 months ago

Nine years later and this bug still exists in Photoshop Elements Organizer 2020. It makes the application useless if you want accurate metadata.

Champion

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1.3K Messages

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20.2K Points

If I remember well, the procedure to delete IPTC data from the files themselves was detailed by a Adobe staff member in a post about PSE11.

How to:
In the Information panel, go to the IPTC section under Metadata.
Click on the small triangle to display all and on the "..." icon to edit.

Not the flexibility offered by Lightroom and Bridge, but you can be selective.
A common way to make the keywords and captions match the catalog while deleting unwanted tags is to select your batch, delete all IPTC ("Remove IPTC metadata") and write metadata to files (Ctrl W).

Note that working in the IPTC panel only affects the contents of the files, not the catalog.

It makes the application useless if you want accurate metadata.

Many users want to be able to manage files metatada and catalog independently for good reasons.

3 Messages

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80 Points

To be fair, applications and operating systems are all over the place with how they manage image metadata: https://www.carlseibert.com/xmp-iptciim-or-exif-which-is-preferred/. I have a large number of historical photos and image metadata is equivalent (actually better) than writing on the back of a photo. Keeping catalog metadata separate in this use case is equivalent to keeping detailed notes on a separate piece of paper -- when the paper and the photo are inevitably separated all the information is lost.

Adobe could have easily and elegantly handled your use case by making a distinction between, say, Organizer Tags and Image Tags. They could also easily improve the product to store the three main metadata fields (Title, Description, Tags) appropriately in XMP and IPTC. But they obviously stopped improving the Organizer product years ago.

Champion

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1.3K Messages

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20.2K Points

It's not about being fair, it's about being clear. What I said is that the issue in the original post, and more generally the issue about the organizer not being able to delete metadata into the files has been solved since many years. So yes, Adobe really "makes a distinction between, say, Organizer tags and image tags".

Depending on your needs you can choose to keep both in sync or separately for different output situations. Sorry if my "How to" section was not clear, please ask if you need more detailed help about using the IPTC panel. If your question is different from the original one or those in the present discussion, you are welcome to give more details.

3 Messages

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80 Points

You're right but keeping the tags and metadata in sync is a very manual operation, with the sole exception of writing tags one time using CTRL+W. Unless you're careful, and I would wager that most users aren't, all of the data entered in PSE is ephemeral.

Champion

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1.3K Messages

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20.2K Points

A very manual operation?
Let's say I decide to be sure all and only the current keywords and captions in my precious up to date catalog are written to files. After doing a full organizer backup I select all (Ctrl A) in the organizer, go to the IPTC tab and run 'remove metadata'. Then I check that all files are still selected and Ctrl W. That will take a few hours for 100 000 files, but I'll have nothing manual to do. Instead of syncing all the library, I can do the same with specific selection, or even individual files.

By the way, this shows the huge advantage of catalog-based managing system over writing metadata to the files. Assigning a common keytag to all files or removing it requires seconds or minutes, not many hours to re-write the files. Retrieving files with a multicriteria search is immediate with a catalog, impossible otherwise.

All digital files as well as catalogs or carefully written metadata are ephemeral by nature (physical media, software...) The necessary backup and archival strategy for Elements is no different in principle than with other softwares and would deserve a new discussion. The necessary tools are there. What is specific is that you need the organizer backup which is the only solution to migrate or restore to a new computer while keeping the links updated with the new files location, and you also need alternative backup solutions for more safety with the files themselves. I don't write metadata to files after each editing session, rather at regular intervals, every month or year. Just like in Lightroom, metadata are not written to files by default, which would make the program much too slow. It's your choice, it's manual since AI can't read your mind...

Believe me, last month I have been trying to sort and organize tens of thousands  physical prints, negatives, slides of family events since 1930. My father was serious to add notes and dates, but most of this is unmanageable without a catalog. Being able to retrieve something useful easily is the key. Otherwise, the desired selection is physical present (not ephemeral) but unaccessible. If I do not want or I can't digitize all that library, I need at least some kind of  Excel catalog and a physical filing and storing system.