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Im using a custom filter to change the fields, but can´t figure out how to change the order of the fields in the comment form.

Desired order:

  • comment field (first/top)
  • name
  • email
  • website

This is the code which I am currently using:

function alter_comment_form_fields($fields){
    $fields['comments'] = 'Test';
    $fields['author'] = '<p class="comment-form-author">' . '<label for="author">' . __( 'Your name, please' ) . '</label> ' . ( $req ? '<span class="required">*</span>' : '' ) .
                    '<input id="author" name="author" type="text" placeholder="John Smith" value="' . esc_attr( $commenter['comment_author'] ) . '" size="30"' . $aria_req . ' /></p>';
    $fields['email'] = 'next';  //removes email field
    //$fields['url'] = '';  //removes website field

    return $fields;
}

add_filter('comment_form_default_fields','alter_comment_form_fields');
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5 Answers 5

up vote 6 down vote accepted

That's pretty simple. You just have to take the textarea out of the default fields – filter 'comment_form_defaults' – and print it on the action 'comment_form_top':

<?php # -*- coding: utf-8 -*-
/**
 * Plugin Name: T5 Comment Textarea On Top
 * Description: Makes the textarea the first field of the comment form.
 * Version:     2012.04.30
 * Author:      Thomas Scholz <info@toscho.de>
 * Author URI:  http://toscho.de
 * License:     MIT
 * License URI: http://www.opensource.org/licenses/mit-license.php
 */

// We use just one function for both jobs.
add_filter( 'comment_form_defaults', 't5_move_textarea' );
add_action( 'comment_form_top', 't5_move_textarea' );

/**
 * Take the textarea code out of the default fields and print it on top.
 *
 * @param  array $input Default fields if called as filter
 * @return string|void
 */
function t5_move_textarea( $input = array () )
{
    static $textarea = '';

    if ( 'comment_form_defaults' === current_filter() )
    {
        // Copy the field to our internal variable …
        $textarea = $input['comment_field'];
        // … and remove it from the defaults array.
        $input['comment_field'] = '';
        return $input;
    }

    print apply_filters( 'comment_form_field_comment', $textarea );
}
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I liked toscho answer. However I wanted to use a custom textarea, so it didn't work in that case. I used the same hooks but with separate functions:

add_filter( 'comment_form_defaults', 'remove_textarea' );
add_action( 'comment_form_top', 'add_textarea' );

function remove_textarea($defaults)
{
    $defaults['comment_field'] = '';
    return $defaults;
}

function add_textarea()
{
    echo '<p class="comment-form-comment"><textarea id="comment" name="comment" cols="60" rows="6" placeholder="write your comment here..." aria-required="true"></textarea></p>';
}
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Note that many anti-spam plugins are changing the textarea too. This has to be tested very good – I had serious problems with a similar approach. –  toscho Oct 23 '12 at 15:29

It looks like the HTML order is hardcoded. You should be able to rearrange it with CSS alone, however.

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the fields od comment form are in the array $fields in function comment_form(). You can hook inside the filter comment_form_default_fields and reorder the array.

Also you can hook inside filter comment_form_defaults and change the defaults; leave all data in array and change only the fieldof the array with your custom fields; include the html.

the default if $fields:

      $fields =  array(
          'author' => '<p class="comment-form-author">' . '<label for="author">' . __( 'Name' ) . '</label> ' . ( $req ? '<span class="required">*</span>' : '' ) .
                      '<input id="author" name="author" type="text" value="' . esc_attr( $commenter['comment_author'] ) . '" size="30"' . $aria_req . ' /></p>',
          'email'  => '<p class="comment-form-email"><label for="email">' . __( 'Email' ) . '</label> ' . ( $req ? '<span class="required">*</span>' : '' ) .
                      '<input id="email" name="email" type="text" value="' . esc_attr(  $commenter['comment_author_email'] ) . '" size="30"' . $aria_req . ' /></p>',
          'url'    => '<p class="comment-form-url"><label for="url">' . __( 'Website' ) . '</label>' .
                      '<input id="url" name="url" type="text" value="' . esc_attr( $commenter['comment_author_url'] ) . '" size="30" /></p>',
      );
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The exact CSS to do this will depend on your theme, however, here's one way:

#commentform {
display:table;
width:100%;   
}

.comment-form-comment {
display: table-header-group; 
}

The table display methods let you reorder things of arbitrary height.

More info: http://tanalin.com/en/articles/css-block-order/

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