Occasionally I come across plugins that are just awesome. While working on a client project that had a membership directory, I needed the ability to view profile details for each individual user in the directory. By default, WordPress uses the “/author/username” slug when viewing a user. Well for a directory of members (not authors), this did not make much sense, and would not have pleased the client very much. This is where the Edit Author Slug plugin comes into play.

The plugin allows you to change the “/author/” part of user URLS to anything you want. This is called the “Author Base”, much like the category and tag bases that ca be defined in the Permalink settings. Once the plugin is active, a new option called “Author Base” is added to the Permalink settings, as shown in the screenshot below:

You could, for example, enter “members” in the Author Base settings. Doing this will result in author URLs being changed from:




By default, “username” is replaced with the user’s login name, but you can change this as well. By editing the profile of the user you wish to change, you can alter the user’s slug by filling out the “Author Slug” option that has been added by the plugin, as shown in the screenshot below:

If you enter “my-awesome-user”, then that user’s final slug will be:


Pretty cool. One of the things that is really great about this plugin is that it does one (actually two) thing, and one thing very, very well, while maintaining a very minimal foot print. It’s great because the settings for the plugin are not added to their own settings page, they’re added to the existing settings in exactly the way you would expect them to be if they were part of WordPress core.

While I was at WordCamp Miami, Jake Goldman gave a great talk titled What Would Core Do?. One of the points he covered was how plugin developers should always strive to make their plugins seem as though they are part of core. I couldn’t agree more, and Edit Author Slug does this very, very well.

My Rating: ★★★★★

  1. donnacha

    Very interesting.

    For a directory, the most useful thing, in terms of both SEO and human memory, would be to remove the Author Base completely (so that you would have URLs along the lines of http://yoursite.com/username) and, according to this comment from plugin author Brandon Allen, it is possible if you add some code to functions.php.

    One of the projects on my long list of “Things I Plan To Do Someday” is to jigsaw together the plugins necessary to allow people to sign up to a site with a photo and enough info to create a meaningful profile and have that profile appear instantly when the admin presses a button to accept the user.

    • Pippin

      That would be a heck of a project 🙂 I started building a Members Directory theme once, but never finished it.

  2. FanaticWeb

    This is something I was looking for and I accidently stumbled on a workaround for it, it works on one of my sites, I didnt dare trying it on another, yet, here’s what I did.

    Initial post had the full permalink, such as: http://www.website.com/category/permalink_text_and_description

    I changed it to http://www.website.com/name and saved it

    Went back and resaved it as:

    So now, if you actually type: http://www.website.com/name it will forward you to the http://www.website.com/category/permalink_text_and_description

    Not sure if this is pure fluke a glitch or something else, but it definitely works for me

    • Pippin

      I don’t think it’s a fluke, but I also wouldn’t call it reliable. I’m also not sure how this is related to the plugin reviewed, but that’s fine 😀

  3. John Walsh

    Here is a perfect solution without plugin, check it out this article. Same things do without plugin.

    Thank you

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