I have spent many time looking for a solution to my issue, but in vain. Your help is invaluable.

I am creating a simplified badge system. The goal is to increment the number of badges for a user if he performs some things on the website. For example, for each post published, I give a user one badge.

To do so, I opted for user meta data, and the use of publish_post action hook.

in my functions.php, I put:

function publish_badge($post_ID) {

   global $current_user; 

   $number_of_badges = get_user_meta($current_user->id,'user_number_of_badges',true);
   $number_of_badges = $number_of_badges + 1;
   update_user_meta($current_user->id, 'user_number_of_badges', $number_of_badges);
   return $post_ID;             
add_action('publish_post', 'publish_badge');

I am new in using Wordpress action hooks, and I spent a lot of time making it work. I know I am missing something, since for other hooks, the problem remains.

Note I have in total 4 actions for which I want to give users more badges: publish_post,edit_post,wp_login,comment_post.

Your usual help is always appreciated.


I found solution for all the hooks except wp_login, In fact, I am using custom post types so I should change my hook names. in other words, publish_post will become publish_cpt.

What to do with wp_login??

    function login_badge($user_login) {
    global $current_user; 

 $number_of_badges= get_user_meta($current_user->id,'user_number_of_badges2',true);
   $number_of_badges= $number_of_badges +5;

  update_user_meta($current_user->id, 'user_number_of_badges2', $number_of_badges);


add_action('wp_login', 'login_badge');

thank you for your time.

2 Answers 2


You're probably running into a problem with $current_user->id being deprecated since WordPress 2.1. Specifically, I get this notice in the error log:

Notice: WP_User->id was called with an argument that is deprecated since version 2.1! Use WP_User->ID instead. in /xxx/xxx/public_html/wordpress/wp-includes/functions.php on line 2923.

Use $current_user->ID instead. Or you may be able to use get_current_user_id():

add_action( 'wp_login', 'login_badge' );
function login_badge( $user_login ) {
    if ( get_user_meta( get_current_user_id(), 'user_number_of_badges2', true ) )
        update_user_meta( get_current_user_id(), 'user_number_of_badges2', get_user_meta( get_current_user_id(), 'user_number_of_badges2', true ) + 5 );

Edit: Try also:

function login_badge( $login ) {

    $user = get_userdatabylogin($login);

    $number_of_badges= get_user_meta($user->ID,'user_number_of_badges2',true);
    $number_of_badges= $number_of_badges + 30;

    update_user_meta($user->ID, 'user_number_of_badges2', $number_of_badges);
add_action( 'wp_login', 'login_badge' );
  • I thank you very much for your information. Unfotunately, I still cannot find solution for my login hook. I will come back here to provide with the solution when I find it. +1 Commented Jun 5, 2013 at 6:06
  • Both the solution above and changing your code to use $current_user->ID worked fine for me on a test web site. How are you testing for success or failure? Commented Jun 5, 2013 at 10:58
  • 1
    I agree with you, your approach is logical, for me it doesn' work even if I made the change of adding 2 parameters to update_user_meta (get_current_user_id() and 'user_number_of_badges2'). You only put in your solution one parameter( look at my edit). thank you anyway, I also gave the solution for my case above your answer Commented Jun 8, 2013 at 15:36
  • You're right. You have to watch me like a hawk. Thanks for sharing your solution. I'm sure some future reader will appreciate your effort. Commented Jun 8, 2013 at 16:54

Just to add to this thread - it may help someone. In our case we were referencing functions from one plugging in another.

The issue was the load order of plugins. One plugin was loaded with 'plugins_loaded' the other with 'init'. The solution was to properly load and prioritise the load order using the same hook.

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