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I am pulling my hair out trying to figure this out. I have followed the wordpress codex here for AJAX: http://codex.wordpress.org/AJAX_in_Plugins

All I keep returning is 0, I never get a 1. Any idea why? My code is as follows.


add_action('wp_enqueue_scripts', 'live_validation' );
add_action('wp_ajax_validate_email', 'validate_email_input');
add_action('wp_ajax_nopriv_validate_email', 'validate_email_input');

function live_validation() {
    wp_enqueue_script( "validate_email", STRIPE_BASE_URL . 'inc/js/check-email.js', array( 'jquery' ) );
    wp_localize_script( "validate_email", "validateEmail", array( 'ajaxurl' => admin_url( 'admin-ajax.php' ) ) );

function validate_email_input() {
    $email = $_POST['email'];
    if ( email_exists($email) ) {
        echo 1; 
    } else {
        echo 0;


jQuery(document).ready(function($) {
    $('input[name=email]').keyup(function() {

        var input_value = $(this).val();

        $.post( validateEmail.ajaxurl, { action:'validate_email', email:input_value }, function(data) {


<div class="form-row">
    <label for="email"><?php _e('Email', 'oe'); ?></label>
    <input type="text" size="20" id="email" name="email" />
    <span class="message"></span>
share|improve this question

I'll guess that you're testing this by entering your admin email address. Have a look at the Codex page for email_exists():

If the E-mail exists, function returns the ID of the user to whom the E-mail is registered.

If you're entering the email address of the first user created for a site, the user ID will be 0, so if ( email_exists($email) ) for that user will evaluate false. The example given on that page does not account for this situation.

share|improve this answer
I wish that was the case :/ I am entering a "test" user's email I created. – ftntravis Jul 4 '13 at 1:56
well your code otherwise works for me. – Milo Jul 4 '13 at 1:56
Weird. Any idea what else could be causing an issue? – ftntravis Jul 4 '13 at 1:57
not sure. I would start by just echoing back the email address to make sure the function is getting called, the 0 could be an error before the email_exists check happens, or it could be the 0 you're echoing yourself. – Milo Jul 4 '13 at 2:01
I don't believe the function is getting called I tried just echoing the address with no luck. Trying to figure out how to debug this. – ftntravis Jul 4 '13 at 2:03
up vote 0 down vote accepted

Found the problem. It always helps to read the codex thoroughly!

"ATTENTION: When you are writing a plugin (in plugin wp_ajax usage) place lines below in your main plugin file, e.g. myplugin.php"


Just make sure all of your AJAX requests go in your main plugin file.

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