On one of my websites there are many posts that require updating.

Following best practice procedures I wish to keep the original date of publication.

However, I believe it is important to display, above the content, the most recent date of updating each post. For this to happen, I installed the plugin 'WP Last Modified Info' but I was not happy with it.

The plugin appears to update every post I click on. In doing so, it chooses to display a random date.

If you are aware of a successful procedure for displaying the correct date of updating a post, I would be grateful to learn how this can be done.

Thank you.

Valerie

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judebanks Premium
If using GeneratePress, you will find the css code to add in the custom code section of the customizer.

https://wordpress.org/support/topic/modifying-last-published-last-updated-on-posts-pages/

You can also find an article on this topic at the WP Beginner site.

When using a child theme, the code can be added directly in the function.php file.

As to comment dates, I prefer to use a css code to display: none.

In my opinion, if the content is currently valid or evergreen, the original published date is not relevant. Visitors will know that the admin is regularly updating the site - a good thing!

Adding custom css code does does not change the original publish date for the search engines.which "sees" both the original and modified dates - so no affect on the posts ranking - and only the last updated date is readily visible to visitors. ~Jude
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MarionBlack Premium
This sounds good, Jude. Which date shows up in the snippets in the SERPs?
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judebanks Premium
In my experience, it can be either. If the content has not received traffic or has low traffic, or where I just make minor changes, say correcting a typo or formatting, the original date continues to appear.

I've noticed that when I make considerable modifications to the content, such as adding new info, or rearrange the order of paragraphs, etc, the snippet includes: Updated [date] .

There's no guarantee. I guess Google's algorithm sniffs out the relevance of updates to users. ~Jude
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MarionBlack Premium
Yeah, we can't trust Google to do what WE want 😊 I think I'll stick to editing the date and adding the originally published date at the bottom.
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ValerieJoy Premium
Thanks for this information, Jude. I have near to 90 posts to update so I may use Marion's method until all the updates are completed.
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MarionBlack Premium
I've just experimented a bit with CSS and Chrome's Inspect tool and I've figured out how to hide the date and time of the comments without deleting them from the database.

This works for GeneratePress, it may not work for all themes

.comment-metadata time {
display: none;
}

The CSS I found at https://wordpress.stackexchange.com/questions/102139/how-do-i-remove-comment-date-and-or-comment-date-link removed all the metadata from the comments including names and avatars. My CSS only removes the date and time.
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judebanks Premium
For comments, I too use {display: none }.

Themes differ in the name used to identify classes.

As you say, you have used Chrome's inspect tool to find the exact wording required to define the theme's date and time class

My new theme's code uses .comment-timendate

~Jude
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judebanks Premium
Marion, thank you for asking me about what shows up in the snippet. It made me check in Jaaxy and I discovered that snippets previously showing the updated in search have reverted to the original date - omg!

I changed my theme recently and am updating old posts. I have not yet submitted the revised content in Search Console, nor added the schema markup. I'm hoping doing that will return the updated date in the snippets. ~Jude
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MarionBlack Premium
You can't trust the big G, Jude.
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ValerieJoy Premium
Marion, I am keen to use the CSS you've provided but before doing so, I'm anxious to find the reason for the dates of the comments appearing on my site with the word Edit. An example is - September 6, at | Edit

All I can think is this is caused by a plugin but I can't identify which plugin that could be.

I'm wondering if I should ignore the current format and proceed with using the CSS?
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MarionBlack Premium
It's only you that can see "Edit", Valerie. Take a peek using an incognito window or a different browser to see what everyone else sees.

Give the CSS a try. If you don't like what it does then you can delete it. Make a quick backup first using Updraft Plus.
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ValerieJoy Premium
Thanks for your response Marion. I applied the CSS and it's worked perfectly.

I'll start tomorrow updating all the posts on this site, editing the published date and including the information at the end of each post, as you are now doing.

And, I'm looking forward to working with Gutenberg. It appears now to be nowhere near as scary as I thought it would be. At a guess, I imagine there is little need to use Elementor with Gutenberg.
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jvranjes Premium
There is no perfect way for this. The best practice you mentioned suggests keeping the original date, but this clearly makes no sense. The reason is that the most important place with the date is in SERPs, and people will not come if they see your years old post. So if you lose them there, changing the date in posts will not help.

I have changed the original published dates in 900 posts in my old site. After that I have seen a serious drop in average ranking, but I have no proof that these are related. Did the same in other older site, and did not notice any negative effect.

So I think I shall probably remove dates completely, I do not see any other optimal way to deal with this in old sites.

In any case, if you want to change the dates only in posts (and keep in SERPs) some themes allow this, Metro Pro is the one, it displays the latest update date for visitors who already come to the post and the published date is not displayed.

If you use plugins, this will depend on the theme design, none of them worked with several themes I use, they would always leave some ugly empty space instead of the date.
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ValerieJoy Premium
My reason for keeping the original date is because of comments received near to that date. If visitors to a website see a published date more recent than the date of comments it would not make sense to them.

I don't know about removing dates completely. I read that is not good practice. In saying that, I don't remember where I read that information so I can't make reference to it.

I thought that Marion Black's method she explained in her response to my question makes sense.

I'm not looking to change the theme I'm using. Changing from Canvas to GeneratePress caused me enough issues, so I don't want a similar experience as it's far too time-consuming.

I appreciate your input to the discussion, Jovo. I'll put more thought into what my next move is with updating this website.
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jvranjes Premium
Removing comment date is easy in some themes. I managed it in one of the sites where I changed dates, and could not do this properly in the other. You will do as you want of course, I could not figure out the best way out of it, there isn't I guess. But this is all about SERPs, this is clear to me.
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ValerieJoy Premium
I haven't started on what is going to be a lengthy task in updating all these posts. Hopefully, I can achieve results I'm looking for but it is what you say, all about SERPs.

Should I have any recognizable success I'll let you know.
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laparra1 Premium
Good Morning Valerie,

I use the plugin Posts Modified Date.

Above your post it will say: last updated on:.........

At the moment I am redoing both websites posts, starting from the beginning. When I am ready, which will take ages, the whole website will be updated in 2020.

Greetings from the south of Spain,

Taetske
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ValerieJoy Premium
Good Afternoon Taetske,

Thanks for your message. It's good to hear from you.

Thanks also for your advice about the Posts Modified Date plugin. I was not aware of that plugin.

My task is similar to what you have planned. I do have two websites that require entire updates. One site is 10 years old. The other I started in September 2015 and that is the site I'm concentrating on first.

With best wishes,

Valerie
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MarionBlack Premium
My workaround is to edit the published date when I update a post and at the bottom of the post, so it appears just before the comments I add "Updated July 9, 2020, originally published April 20, 2019". (Change the dates to suit) 😎

This way the dates on the comments don't look out of place.

I tried the same plugin and didn't like it either.
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ValerieJoy Premium
Thanks very much for your help, Marion. I have been hesitant to change the published date, but with the knowledge that it works for you, it's certainly good enough for me.

Ahh.....another troubling task solved!

Many thanks.
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jvranjes Premium
Did not understand, do you change the original published date? If so, what happens if somebody already copied your post and published it? Now when you set a new date to your original old post, it will appear in SERPs as a new post and this will make it plagiarism of the copied post which will then take a role of the original, so you can get punishment from Google and never rank again.
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