The Tagline Rotator plugin does pretty much what it sounds like it would do: it randomly selects a tagline (that’s the description of your blog beneath the title) from a list of user-compiled taglines, then displays it within your blog. It offers a couple of advantages over some of the other similar plugins I found, most importantly that it uses the mySQL database within WordPress, and therefore should not slow down page loads at all.

Installation

  1. Download the plugin and unzip it.
  2. Copy the tagline_rotator.php file to the plugins directory of your WordPress install.
  3. Activate the plugin in the Plugins menu within your admin pages. Taglines can be added through Settings -> Tagline Rotator.

Tagline Rotator Options Screen
Known Bugs/Limitations
Of course, there are a couple of bugs/limitations that you should know about.

  • You must choose ‘Save Changes’ to commit any deletions or additions to the tagline database. Hopefully, this will soon be automated
  • The plugin currently does not delete the tables it creates upon de-activation (that way you don’t lose your taglines). However, if you manually delete the table, WordPress will throw an error upon re-activation of the plugin. The easiest way to fix this is to change the option ‘tagline_tables’ in wp_options to be ‘false’ NB: If you’re not comfortable manually editing your mySQL database, don’t worry. The table will just sit there and work if you re-activate the plugin.
  • It still won’t do the dishes.

Updates

Version 1.2 – 4-18-2010 – Updated UI in Admin Settings to put Save button and add functionality at the top.

Version 1.1 – 12-31-2009 – Plugin database table is now compliant with WordPress database prefix (i.e. it will use the database prefix set by WP, not the previous wp_tagline_rotator). This should make it WPMU compatible as well, although this is still untested. Upgrading automatically through WordPress from a previous version will also rename the database table to use the correct prefix.

Version 1.0 – 3-16-2009 – Version 0.4b has been tested out a bit, and this plugin does what it sets out to do. As a result, it’s being re-tagged as version 1.0.

Version 0.4b - 3-13-2009 – Ensures compatibility with themes using either bloginfo() or get_bloginfo() to display tagline information. Here is the download: Tagline Rotator Plugin (BETA)

Version 0.3b - 7-31-2008 – Allows for editing of existing taglines without deleting and re-adding them. Please report bugs or errors in the comment area.

Version 0.2 – 7-26-2008 – Fixes an issue where double quotes in a tagline prevent it from being deleted. Thanks to Thorsten for pointing out this bug.

Feedback
As always, please keep in mind that this is open-source software, so I welcome any contributions or suggestions you might have. Please leave a comment with any feedback or problems you had installing or using the plugin. Feature requests are also welcome, as are over-the-top compliments.

Donation

If you got some use out of this plugin, please consider a donation. My ability to purchase beer is directly correlated to new version releases.





93 comments

  1. McD says:

    Can you tell me where all of my taglines are kept/stored? I deactivated the plugin and now it does a "QUERY FAIL" every time I try to re-activate it. Thanks!

    • vaskenhauri says:

      @McD,

      The tagline table will be called something like *prefix*tagline_rotator, so on a default install it would be wp_tagline_rotator

      It sounds like you\’re getting an error that reads \”The query failed.\” This is triggered when the plugin is updated (or re-activated) and doesn\’t find an option called tagline_db_version, which was first set in version 1.1 of the plugin. If it doesn\’t find this option, it will try and rename the database to be more compliant with WordPress MU installations (basically it goes from always calling the table wp_tagline_rotator to using whatever prefix is set for your blog). If that query fails (because your table is already renamed), it will output the \’query failed\’ error.

      If you\’re getting an error like \’could not create tagline tables,\’ then you\’ll need to change the tagline_tables option in your wp_options table to \’true\’ so the plugin doesn\’t try to create the table again. If you\’ve got a backup of your taglines, you can completely remove all traces of the plugin by deleting the tagline_tables option, the tagline_db_version option, and the wp_tagline_rotator table. If you activate from there, you should have a brand-new install.

      It\’s worth noting this is the time of year when I have a little time off work and usually update the plugin. It\’s going to probably get a major overhaul over the next couple of days, to make it a lot more efficient and to do some better error-checking, so if you\’d be interested in testing a beta of that just let me know and I\’ll send it over as soon as it\’s ready.

  2. Josh says:

    This plugin has been working fine for months until I just tried to update to 2.2. I performed an automatic update and received this eror message:

    Plugin failed to reactivate due to a fatal error.

    Parse error: syntax error, unexpected T_STRING, expecting T_OLD_FUNCTION or T_FUNCTION or T_VAR or '}' in /home/www/joshzam.com/wordpress/wp-content/plugins/tagline-rotator/tagline-rotator.php on line 34

    Any ideas???

    • vaskenhauri says:

      @Josh,

      Line 34 is where the __construct() statement is in the plugin\’s main class. It sounds like that error might be related to PHP4, which can\’t handle the __construct() method. If your web host will let you upgrade to PHP5, that\’s probably the easiest and best fix, although and easy solution would also be to just put v1.4 of the plugin back in, as it seems to be compatible with PHP4.

      If you\’re running PHP5, or you\’re not sure what version is running, let me know (also what hosting provider you\’re running on) and I can help troubleshoot further.

    • vaskenhauri says:

      @Lisa, It should work right out of the box. You can either activate it on a per-site basis, then add the taglines in that site's dashboard as you normally would (recommended), or go into your Network Admin panel and Network Activate the plugin. I wouldn't do the latter, because I'm pretty sure then every site will be looking for taglines from the Settings->Tagline Rotator menu, so you might get blank taglines if there isn't a tagline manually set for each site.

      I'd love to know whether this works for you. If it doesn't, please let me know what sort of errors you're seeing, and what version of WP you're using. Thanks!

  3. jay.toups says:

    vaskenhauri, where can i dload 1.4? upgrade throws Parse error: syntax error, unexpected T_STRING and i can’t upgrade to php5 easily…

  4. InstaDerek says:

    I had the same question – in fact, I was wondering if there was a way to have the plugin ONLY display the tagline in the blog, and not in the window title. Is it a matter of just commenting out a line or two in the plugin file? If not, no worries. Might the next release possibly make it an option to include the tagline in the window title?Great plugin, thanks for your work on it!

  5. InstaDerek says:

    Here goes nothing… my situation was similar to the one Erica M had, except that I lost ALL my taglines. :-( . Worse yet, I have tried and failed to reproduce the error message, so I don’t know if we’re going to be able to figure it out. What happened was that I mistakenly changed my blog to the Twenty Ten theme. I changed it back immediately, but after I did I got an error message similar to Erica’s, i.e. [ something? ] is not a valid MySQL result [ something? ] in [path...] /wp-content/plugins/tagline-rotator/tagline-rotator.php on line 127 [?] I THINK it was line 127, but I don’t know for sure. I do know that the same error message was on the plugin’s options page, above the Delete Taglines section (which by then showed no taglines to delete).I remembered what you wrote on the WP Plugin Directory about possibly needing to deactivate and reactivate the plugin on WP 3.0 or higher, so I did that. When I re-activated it the error message was gone, but all my taglines were still gone too. I put one in just to see if it would show up, which it did. Now I think that may have been a mistake, because then I came here and read what you said about going into the options table in the blog database. I went to the db with PHPMyAdmin, and the tagline_rotator_taglines table was there but all it showed was the one tagline I had just put back in after re-activating.There aren’t any db backups recent enough to have my taglines in them, so I’m resigned to trying to remember them and type them back in. I just thought I should let you know what happened, in case there’s anything to be learned from it for future use/development of the plugin. Thanks for making it, I really like it despite this setback.

  6. Marilla says:

    Hi Vasken

    I’ve installed the plugin, put in some taglines, but they’re not showing up. I deactivated and reactivated the plugin. Still no dice. I’m using the Canvas theme from Woo Themes. Any suggestions?

    Thanks – great idea for a plugin.

    • Vasken says:

      Hi Marilla,

      Thanks for reporting this! I’ll take a look at the theme and see how it’s loading the blog description, then let you know.

      UPDATE: Since Canvas is a commercial theme, I tried contacting the company that sells it via Twitter to let them look at my code, which is the best I could do given that I can’t see theirs :) Here’s their response: http://twitter.com/woothemes/status/205716146501074945 If you want to follow up with them I’m happy to take a look at what they say, but I’m a little surprised by that answer and the fact that they’re unwilling to troubleshoot even knowing what plugin is interacting with their theme.

      -Vasken

  7. Ed says:

    Hi – Installed your rotator and it looks good. Does exactly what I want it to so thank you.

    However, I have two problems in that it changes the title of my home page to one of the quotes that I have put in. I’m not a coder but could you suggest an easy answer to this small issue?

    The other issue is aesthetic – is there any way to prevent the quotes that I’ve put in going onto three lines, rather than just remaining on two?

    Cheers Ed

    • Vasken says:

      Hi Ed,

      It sounds like the title of your home page is actually using the description field (which is what my plugin filters to rotate the taglines). If you let me know what theme you’re using, I’d be happy to take a look and tell you what code needs to be changed so that the rotated taglines don’t appear in the title area. As to the 3-line issue, that’s being determined by the CSS on the page most likely–in other words, the container for the tagline is only so wide, so it’s wrapping the text at that point. Similarly to the title issue, if you let me know where the theme is currently running, I can probably give you some pointers on the CSS you’ll need to change to make your tagline wider (and appear on 2 lines instead of 3).

      -Vasken

  8. mcd says:

    I love this plugin! Many Thanks. However, it repeats entries 2-3 times on the page listing all of my entered taglines. I can delete the repeated entries, but they show up again eventually. Any idea what may be causing this?

    thanks again!

  9. Jeff says:

    Noticing an apparent bug with the Twenty Thirteen theme and WP 3.6 – the page title and header area taglines are out of sync, as if they are being selected (at random) separately. So I’ll have one headline in the page title, a different one in the header area (except when they randomly align by chance, of course).

  10. AWC says:

    This is exactly what I’m looking for… but it isn’t working for me at all. I’m running WP vers 3.7. I did have it working about a week or two ago though. Maybe 3.7 killed it somehow? Any updates coming, or suggestions?

    Thanks!
    AWC

  11. Jay Campbell says:

    Vasken – Great plugin, but I’m having the same issue as Ed. Your reply: “It sounds like the title of your home page is actually using the description field (which is what my plugin filters to rotate the tallness). If you let me know what theme you’re using, I’d be happy to take a look and tell you what code needs to be changed so that the rotated taglines don’t appear in the title area.”

    This is the case with all the themes I’m using but for the sake of educating me, perhaps you can consider how I would fix it on the Twenty Fourteen theme? Thanks!

    • Vasken says:

      Hi Jay,

      Let me take a look and I’ll let you know. It’s been a while since I updated the plugin, so it’s quite possible something at the API level has changed.

      -Vasken

    • Vasken says:

      Hi Jay,

      I tested the latest version of the plugin with the Iconic One theme and it appears to be working correctly here: http://smokedmeatlog.com/ (you should see Test Tagline 1 and 2 rotate through in the tagline field).

      Are you talking about the title that appears in the actual browser tab? If so, that is custom code that the theme uses to display a title that consists of the name of the blog + the description (which becomes the random tagline), when you’re on the homepage.

      // Add the site name.
      $title .= get_bloginfo( 'name' );

      // Add the site description for the home/front page.
      $site_description = get_bloginfo( 'description', 'display' );

      If this is the problem, I can look into creating an option in the plugin that would enable you to override the tagline when it’s being displayed in the title and have it use the default tagline every time. Would that be the best option? I can see why you’d want that title to remain consistent for SEO, and I can probably turn it off whenever the description is called inside of wp_title() (the function that generates the title for the browser tab).

      Let me know if this makes sense, and would fix the issue you’re having. If so, I’ll send you a beta version of the plugin to test.

      Thanks,
      Vasken

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