What is BBCode?

BBCode is a simple way to format your entries (like bold text, italic text, links) in forums.


notebook writing bbcode

© Free usage

BBCode was implemented as method of providing a safer and easier way of allowing posts to be formatted on forums.


Easier than HTML

Formatting Posts

BBCode is short for Bulletin Board Code. It is used as a way for formatting posts made on message boards, blogs and more. It is similar to HTML in the sense that in BBCode one does also use tags to format something specific (contained within the tag). In BBCode tags are indicated by rectangular brackets surrounding a keyword, which is in turn transformed into HTML before being delivered to a web browser.

Since its creation, BBCode has been used in many different portals. Any developer can implement it for free and anyone can use it.

Before BBCode forums sometimes allowed users to include HTML code in their posts, which had many security issues (i.e. the user could execute javascript code, break the layout of the site and so on). With BBCode being parsed by the forum scripts it is easier to control what the user can do and cannot do (allowing or not allowing specific BBCode tags).

The basic BBCode tags are often very similar across many different forums, but there are some variants in existence as well.

Sometimes BBCode tags has to be in specific cases (i.e. [b]bold text[/b] will work, while [B]bold tex[/B] will not). It is also very different as to which of the more unsafe and/or complex tags that are supported. For instance you cannot always expect the [img] image tag to be supported as allowing posters unlimited power to post any picture they like could have some pretty nasty effects.

Reference Table


More intuitive: Tags rather than code


Save time when writing

More secure:

No intrusive scripts


Powerful :

Advanced features


We could say we want the Web to reflect a vision of the world where everything is done democratically. To do that, we get computers to talk with each other in such a way as to promote that ideal.

Tim Berners-Lee

BBCode Principles

What are the 5 key points I should know about BBCode?

  1. BBCode is a free markup language used to format posts in forums and message boards.
  2. BBCode uses a set of tags to format text, images, and other content.
  3. BBCode is similar to HTML, but with a few key differences.
  4. BBCode is easy to learn and use.
  5. BBCode can be used to create simple or complex formatting.

BBCode history



Help Build bbcode.org

This site is meant to be a resource site for people using BBCode when posting on web-forums, but it is also meant as a resource for people looking to implement BBCode in their software products.

Over time we will add new topics and content related to HTML, PHP, programming and web3 (decentralized internet).

If you feel that you have something to contribute to this site, be it articles, guides etc. please do not hesitate to contact us (email can be found at the bottom of the page).