I added a custom field "Twitter URL" to each of my users (on the page Home » Administration » Configuration » People » Account settings). I'm trying to display this "Twitter URL" on every article that that user makes. For example, under the "Published by someusername on Wed, 12/28/2011 - 02:57" that is already on every post, I want to have the "Twitter URL" for that user right under that.

Published by mike on Wed, 12/28/2011 - 02:57 http://twitter.com/someusername

I think I need to go into node.tlp.php and edit something, but could anyone give me a little more help?

1 Answer 1


If you take a look at node.tpl.php, you'll notice there's already a variable for this type of data: $submitted. You could replace that variable with your own data, but to do it the Drupal way, what you want to do is modify the value of $submitted using a preprocess function.

In your theme, create a template.php file (if you don't have one already). In it, add the following function (replacing example with the short name of your theme):

function example_preprocess_node(&$variables) {
  // Linkify the URL
  $twitter_url = l('http://twitter.com/someusername', 'http://twitter.com/someusername');

  // This is the same thing as saying 
  // $variables['submitted'] = $variables['submitted'] . ' ' . $twitter_url;
  $variables['submitted'] .= ' ' . $twitter_url;

Clear the cache (Configuration → Performance → Clear cache), and check your node pages again: you should see the Twitter URL appended to submitted line.

But this is of course, static: to load the user's Twitter URL, you'll need to load the field data:

function example_preprocess_node(&$variables) {
  // Even though there's a user object in $variables['user'], we need to
  // load a new copy because the preloaded one doesn't have have field data
  $user = user_load($variables['uid']);

  // Retrieve the data and its value for the Twitter URL field
  // Replace field_twitter_url with the short name of the field
  // found at admin/config/people/accounts/fields
  $items = field_get_items('user', $user, 'field_twitter_url');
  $field = field_view_value('user', $user, 'field_twitter_url', $items[0]);

  // Get the rendered output of the field for use in the submitted line
  $twitter_url = drupal_render($field));

  // If you wanted to get more fields, repeat the last three lines, replacing
  // field_twitter_url with the names of the other fields.

  // Linkify the URL and append it to the $submitted variable
  $variables['submitted'] .= ' ' . l($twitter_url, $twitter_url);

The Field API isn't the most intuitive or straightforward API in the world, but here's what's going on:

  1. Load the user object, which contains the information about the fields attached to it.
  2. Load the specific data associated with the field_twitter_url using field_get_items().
  3. Get the render array for the specific field you want to display using field_view_value().
  4. Get the final rendered output using drupal_render().

Now, if you wanted to have the Twitter URL separate (so you can move it to where ever you want in the template), just create your own variable:

function example_preprocess_node(&$variables) {
   // ...
   // Do all the stuff from the previous sample function, except
   // setting $variables['submitted']
   // ...

   $variables['twitter_url'] = $twitter_url;

Now, you can add $twitter_url to anywhere in node.tpl.php. If your theme doesn't already have its own node.tpl.php, navigate to the modules/node folder, copy the node.tpl.php that's there to your theme folder, and clear the cache.

  • I don't have time to try this until tonight but this sounds like exactly what I need. One question though. Lets say I have multiple fields (i.e. field_twitter_url, field_fb_url, and field_something) what would I change? Would it be possible for you to edit the answer to show this case?
    – Mike
    Dec 28, 2011 at 15:58
  • @Mike Added, but all you need to do is repeat steps 2-4 with the Field API (field_get_items(), field_view_value(), then drupal_render()) with the other field names.
    – user7
    Dec 28, 2011 at 19:48
  • I'm still having trouble with this. I was wondering if you could take a look at this question I posted and give me some feedback. drupal.stackexchange.com/questions/18480/…
    – Mike
    Dec 29, 2011 at 19:32
  • or is there a module to take care of this?
    – Mike
    Dec 29, 2011 at 20:29

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