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I'm trying to get the title and content from the global $post variable when a user publishes a new post (to submit to an external web service, which in turn needs to pass back additional data to add to the post).

The hooks I tried using so far ('transition_post_status' and 'publish_post') all seem to run before the post is inserted into the database. This results in an empty string everytime my code tries to read data from $post, as (I assume?) this variable is fetched from the Wordpress DB, and - because a new post is applicable - nothing has yet been stored in the DB to begin with.

Is there a hook that fires after a post's status is transitioned to which I can hook a function? Alternatively, is it possible to somehow get the post title and content from the TinyMCE editor via PHP?

Would appreciate any help!

Example of what I'm currently sitting with:

add_action('transition_post_status','dostuff',10,2);

function dostuff( $new_status, $old_status ) {
    if ($new_status == 'publish' && $old_status != 'publish') {
        global $post;
        $content = $post-> post_title . "\n" . $post->post_content; //Title and content are empty :(
        //Do more stuff with $content
    }
}

2 Answers 2

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The third parameter for transition_post_status is the post object. Use it.

add_action( 'transition_post_status', 'dostuff', 10, 3 );

function dostuff( $new_status, $old_status, $post ) {
}

When in doubt, do not use globals. They are not reliable, they make your code hard to test and to read.

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    Having this filter load on every post transition - especially if a call is being made to an external web service - may affect performance, even if it fails the if/else checks to facilitate completing the call. Commented Oct 19, 2014 at 23:24
  • @toscho thanks, this works perfectly. I'm marking this as the correct answer. What would be the difference between declaring the $post variable in the function's parameters versus inside the function? (If inside the function, it would start working after the post was saved a first time, which led to my "not-yet-in-the-DB hypothesis.)
    – player.mdl
    Commented Oct 20, 2014 at 4:05
  • @player.mdl See my edit. Using global is not an internal declaration, quite the opposite. And WP doesn’t push every post object into the global namespace.
    – fuxia
    Commented Oct 20, 2014 at 6:02
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I'm unable to comment yet, as I feel it may be a more suitable spot than to post an actual answer, in case your code above is a typo, but your line:

$content = $post-> post_title . "\n" . $post->post_content; //Title and content are empty :(

might be producing an error as there is a space inbetween $post-> post_title. It should be

`$post->post_title`

(no space after "->")

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  • 1
    You can have any amount of spaces or line breaks around the ->. That’s valid PHP.
    – fuxia
    Commented Oct 19, 2014 at 22:38

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