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How to Display Publish Dates-as-Time-Ago

How to Display Publish Dates as “Time Ago”

The way we display date and time on the Web doesn’t leave a lot of room for customization. There are only so many ways to present these values.

For instance, you have already probably noticed the format in which WordPress outputs the date of publishing for blog posts.

Display Publish Dates

Usually, there’s a default value for the date format. Changing the time and date format is rather simple. It basically involves going to Settings > General > Date Format and picking your preferred format.

Publish Dates

However, in this article, we’re particularly interested in the “Some time ago” and its format. The regular timestamp shows the date and/or time of publishing. The “time ago” displays how long ago we published a post.
If you are a Facebook or a Twitter user, you’re probably familiar with this format, which looks like this:

Display Publish Dates as Time Ago

In this tutorial, we’re going to show you how to modify this default behavior the easy way.

Go to wp-content/your-theme/functions.php file and scroll all the way down.

Insert this hook:

function my_post_time_ago_function() {
return sprintf( esc_html__( '%s ago', 'textdomain' ), human_time_diff(get_the_time ( 'U' ), current_time( 'timestamp' ) ) );
add_filter( 'get_the_date', 'my_post_time_ago_function' );

Your end result should look like this:

Publish Dates

If you want same thing to apply for comment dates, create a similar function:

function my_comment_time_ago_function() {
return sprintf( esc_html__( '%s ago', 'textdomain' ), human_time_diff(get_comment_time ( 'U' ), current_time( 'timestamp' ) ) );
add_filter( 'get_comment_date', 'my_comment_time_ago_function' );

And here’s the result:

date and time wordpress

The “time ago” format is ideal for websites that post regular updates and have a generally very dynamic posting rhythm. Regular datestamps, which display date and time of publishing, are just fine, of course. But they don’t convey that feeling of immediacy and dynamics as the “Posted 15 minutes ago” or “Posted one day ago” does. Readers love being in the loop with the lighting-speed way the Internet works. Displaying how long ago a post was published is an easy yet efficient way to keep your visitors interested in your content.

We hope that you found this article to be helpful. If you liked it, please feel free to check out some of these articles as well!


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Comments (5)

  • Avatar

    wow this post help me thanks

  • Avatar

    In my Newspaper theme its not working. It show 1 month ago for all posts

  • Avatar

    hello sir. I m using refined magazine by candid, when I did it, it changes the display format instead of showing date and time, it only shows the time by hours counting, before the theme shows date in this format month, and day, and year old but now it only shows time in hours.


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