Posts Without Dates Piss Me Off

Please, tell me when your post was published. Posts without dates piss me off!

There seems to be a new trend in the online world and that is not including dates on blog posts.

I HATE IT! What the hell is up with this?

I’m not against reading old blog posts, but I like to be aware of how old they are. This is especially true if I’m reading any information that might be time sensitive. Was this posted last week or last year?

I’ll still read old posts now and then, but I want to be aware of the date so I can decide for myself if I still think it’s worth reading or not. Please don’t try to make that decision for me.

Where did this trend of hiding dates come from?

I feel like SOMEONE started this and everyone decided to follow in their footsteps. I assume the line of thinking is that bloggers don’t want readers to see an old date and immediately click out of the post because “it’s old”. But honestly, I find that I’m less likely to read a post if I have no indicator of when it was published. Not seeing that date really annoys me!

Let your readers decide!

I get the line of thinking here, I really do. But I think this is a decision we should leave up to our readers. They should be able to look at the post title AND the date and decide if it’s still something they want to read or not.

Plus, there are some topics that are time sensitive and seeing the date is a good indicator of if they’re still relevant. For example, I don’t really want to read a post about SEO that was published in 2011. SEO is something that’s constantly changing very quickly, and something from 2011 is more likely to be outdated.

Have you seen these dateless posts around the blogosphere?

How do you feel about them?

Photo of Ashley
I'm a 27 year old California girl living in England (I fell in love with a Brit!). I like to inject a little #girlpower into the WordPress development community by teaching women how to be coding badasses. more »

Don't miss my next post!

Sign up to get my blog posts sent directly to your inbox (plus exclusive store discounts!).

You might like these

Leave a Reply

(Enter your URL then click here to include a link to one of your blog posts.)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

103 comments

  1. YES. YES YES YES. So much love for this post. I went onto a blog the other day and it just said ‘Sunday’ where the date should be. Sunday? What do you mean by Sunday? Why must you mess with my brain like this? It’s especially annoying when it’s a blog I’ve only just discovered and I don’t know whether to follow or not because I can’t tell if they still blog or if their last post is from 2008…

    Amber @ The Mile Long Bookshelf recently posted: GUEST POST: Should YA Books Always Have a Happy Ending?
    1. Ugh ‘Sunday’ tells you nothing! What’s even the point of that? They might as well not have anything at all. X_X

  2. Totally agree with this! Was reading a blog post once, thinking it was relevant to now. Turned out, it was written three years ago!

  3. AMEN! I agree with you and often if it is something tech or blog tutorial related I may even skip reading it. Technology changes so quickly and platforms are updated often so if I find something without a date I just move along.

    Anne recently posted: Blogger Love Vol. 39
    1. Oh yeah, if it’s a tutorial I often won’t read it at all if there’s not a date, which is sad because what if it was only written last week? But I’m afraid it’ll just be super old and thus no longer relevant.

  4. OMG! I totally feel the same way. It so pisses me off. There is a travel blog that I absolutely love to read but they stopped posting dates. So annoying. I also dislike having to click through to read the rest of the post. I thought that was the purpose of signing up for the email. Annoying. I have to really like your blog to keep reading.

    Bree @The Things We Read recently posted: Bout of Books 13
    1. That’s another thing I hate! I hate it when I subscribe to a blog via email or RSS and they only show an excerpt. I tend to unsubscribe if that’s the case. πŸ™

  5. This especially bothers me on posts about tips or tricks for your blog, promotion on Pinterest, Twitter, tutorials for WP, or SEO like you mentioned because those things stop becoming relevant the second that say, Twitter adds Twitter cards, or Pinterest introduces the Rich Pins. Unless you plan on keeping those posts up to date as those modify and update – you NEED a date.

    If you don’t have one and you’re putting those things out into the world I’m just going to assume you don’t actually care about your readers and in that case whatever you have to say no longer means a thing to me.

    1. I totally agree! Not having a date on tutorials or techy posts is THE WORST. If it’s a personal post or something it’s less of a big deal.

  6. They piss me off also when I am doing research or something time sensitive, as you said. I think some people don’t include the date because they think it’s not important and it’s one more think cluttering u[ the blog visually.

    1. Yeah if you’re out hunting for facts or data knowing that the article you’re reading is still new/relevant is SUPER important.

  7. I guess I don’t really pay that much attention to dates. I really only do if I am cleaning out blogs that don’t seem to be going any where any more..if a post hasn’t been done in a while then I view them as inactive and unfollow.

    Stormi recently posted: The Week In Review: #35
    1. I’m actually REALLY interested in the idea of cleaning out old/inactive blogs, just because it’s something I never do. Maybe another post is in order. πŸ˜‰

  8. I don’t like them either. Unfortunately my blog has them. I just changed my blog theme and didn’t even realize it was missing post dates until a few days ago. It’s something written in the theme that I haven’t figured out yet. I don’t want to change my theme because I love it but I have got to figure out how to change that. It annoys me!

    1. Yep, I think you’re exactly right. Tutorials, guides, facts, data, and anything tech related can become outdated FAST.

  9. I once saw a blogger advising others to do this (if only temporarily) if you take a hiatus from blogging and don’t want new visitors to notice. It still strikes me as terrible advice. It pisses me off when I can’t tell if a blog post was published recently, yet the blogger uses vague terms like, ‘tomorrow’ and ‘next month.’ Is that actually tomorrow, or three years ago?

    Abria @ Bee Splendid recently posted: Experiments with Blog Ads
    1. That seems so incredibly deceptive/manipulative to me. It’s like advising you to LIE to your new visitors and TRICK them into sticking around. That’s not cool. :/

  10. Oh my gosh, I haven’t seen this done before, but it just sounds so obnoxious. Why would anyone do that? That most likely won’t make ANYONE more inclined to read your posts.

    Amber recently posted: Bout of Books 13!
  11. I thought this was a thing mostly confined to Tumblr. I didn’t realize that this is happening on other blogs too. But goodness! If I were to see that, I probably wouldn’t even read the post at all. I need context when I read something and that means the date to me is vital.

    JosΓ©phine @ Word Revel recently posted: Retrospect #70: May 3
    1. I haven’t seen it on many (if any) book blogs, but for some reason I’m seeing it a lot on design type blogs.

    1. I didn’t think I noticed them until I realized that I was HUNTING for the date out of the corner of my eye and couldn’t find it. It’s so weird. When the date is there I don’t know that I’ve even glanced at it, but somehow I have. So then it becomes really apparent that I DO hunt for dates if the date isn’t there, because that’s when I realize, “I need to search harder! I can’t find it!”

      It’s so weird, hah.

    1. Yeah, sadly the ones I’ve seen use the “post title” URL option (like I have on my blog) so the date isn’t there either. πŸ™ But that’s a good thing to look out for just in case!

  12. Yeah I noticed this trend too. It is annoying because sometimes I want to know how relevant/new this information/tutorial is.

    BTW On totally unrelated note. Since you changed to new time I have to enter name/email/website for comment every time. It’s not remembered anymore. I don’t know if it’s a browser or theme thing. I tried clearing my browser’s history but it did not help.

    Dragana recently posted: April 2015-Monthly Rewind
    1. Oh gosh, that’s annoying, I’m so sorry! I’ll look into that.

      Are you sure it was since I changed my theme and didn’t start before then? The theme change shouldn’t have affected anything (theoretically) but I did move to a new server set up in like February or March which could have affected it.

      1. Yeah it is a bit annoying. Sometimes I give up on leaving a comment because I am too lazy to fill them out. (Sorry) I don’t know if it’s only me, or someone else has the same problem…

        Well I am not sure it happened at the exact time as the theme switch. I didn’t know you switched servers, so I blamed the theme switch for the bug. If I can help more, like with browser version or something like it, feel free to contact me.

        1. No it’s okay I’ve actually been able to replicate the problem by logging out and testing comments myself. Since I can reproduce it I can work on fixing it.

          I do think it’s a server issue. The problem is that I have very fierce caching that prevents certain cookies from being set. Cookies are used to store those details in your browser. It’s not supposed to be removing the WordPress ones but it looks like it might be. πŸ™

            1. Okay I’ve made an adjustment. Let me know if that fixes it! (You’ll have to fill out your details one last time but then HOPEFULLY it should remember them.)

                  1. Yaaay! πŸ˜€ Thanks so much for letting me know. I hate that this must have been a problem for aaages!

    1. For some reason I don’t knowingly look at the date UNLESS I can’t find it. It’s like my subconscious is always looking for it, and I just don’t realize until it’s not there!

  13. I completely agree! I do a lot of research online, and it’s annoying to find a great article that I can’t really depend on because I’m not sure when it was published. They hide the date so they can still stay relevant, but they’re actually doing the complete opposite.

  14. YES!!! I am always looking for tutorials or help and then you think you find something great, but no freaking date on it! I want a current tutorial, not one from 2007! The only way I figure I can find out what the closest date is on these stupid posts is by the earliest comment.. but even that could be wrong, the post could have sat there for years before a comment posted.. PLLEEEEASE put dates on your posts!

    Pamela Lopez recently posted: WordPress Security Notice
    1. I hate it when I’m hunting for a tutorial and there’s no date. πŸ™ I have no way of knowing if it’s still relevant/accurate information! Looking at the comments is a great idea, but you’re right—that’s still not a reliable way of telling.

  15. Oh my gosh, YES! I think the trend has come from those who create “Evergreen” content. But honestly, how evergreen can information really be in our time? Either way – I completely agree with your stance that I should be able to decide if the information shared is relevant anymore and knowing a date makes me trust the source more. Especially if I’ve seen posts “updated” over time. I love that! So glad you’re posting about this. I hope the trend goes away and people start putting dates back on their posts again.

    Megan Minns recently posted: Free Wallpaper: May 2015
    1. I do love seeing posts get updated! You can let people know that a post is still relevant by either re-publishing the post (changing the date) or just put a banner at the top that says “Last Updated April 3rd, 2015”. I do that on some of my posts when I go back and change them!

  16. I’m leaning towards the total opposite of you’re saying here. I tend to leave a post if it’s older than 2014 because a lot of information has changed since then. If a blog post doesn’t include a date, I will read it all the way through. That’s when I decide if the information is no longer relevant. Do that many people, really, leave a blog post because there’s not post date? Seems weird to me but I guess that’s just my opinion and everyone has one, right?

    1. I think the hard part is when you have no way of knowing if the information is still relevant. Sometimes you can read a post and know if it’s still relevant because you already know the information. But what if you’re looking up a tutorial or a walkthrough because you DON’T know and you want to learn? If there’s no date and you don’t already have the knowledge, you have no way of knowing if the information is still relevant or accurate!

  17. I’ve seen this on a few blogs, and I don’t like it either. I think it’s really important to know when a blog post was published, especially if it’s a review of a product, a restaurant, or a place because things could have changed.

    Rosie recently posted: Share the love – April
    1. Yeah tech is definitely a big one. πŸ™ I haven’t seen this very much on book blogs (if at all) but it seems to be getting common in design/business type blogs. πŸ™ Grr!

  18. You’re right, some posts are time sensitive – like SEO or topics that are forever changing and time sensitive. But it’s okay to remove dates on posts that are completely random. We want our content to appear fresh and new instead of old and outdated for topics that don’t require a time stamp. IE, like “How to Scan Art” or something like that. πŸ™‚

    I understand that I may lose readers, but my brain-dump blog never gets any hits to begin with and I’m okay with being a readerless blog (I’m not in the market to make cash from it). However, I do run a successful e-commerce website with a blog, and my products aren’t time-sensitive so a date would be irrelevant to the topic I’m blogging about.

    1. Yeah I USUALLY don’t mind if there aren’t dates on more personal posts. It’s definitely mostly the tutorial/walkthrough/tech posts I’m worried about.

      But that being said, sometimes I do still like to have dates on personal posts too. For example:

      Sometimes I find a new blogger and read all about them and get really hooked on their content. I start reading their personal posts and learning about their life.. But sometimes I want to know when certain events happened in their life. If I read a post about their wedding, I want to know when that was! Was it last week? A year ago? Five years ago? If a blog is really personal I like to put together a little timeline in my head. It helps me get to know them better!

  19. I can’t say that I’ve noticed the dateless posts, but I’m pretty sure it would irritate me, too. My posts have dates however, they lack the year. That is simply the way the theme and framework have it, I guess, but I would like to change it to include the year. If I can figure out how to add the year, that is. That also makes me wonder if it is intentional or part of the theme or template. My guess is intentional because I think all themes have the dates built-in already, so I can’t fathom why anyone would want the date removed.

    1. Well themes don’t necessarily have dates built-in. When a developer makes a theme, they choose exactly what format it’s displayed in. So your theme developer made that decision themselves, rather than taking something away that WordPress offers by default. Does that make sense?

      1. Actually, that does make sense to me. Of course, I still would like the year to display on my posts, instead of just the month and day. I still can’t imagine why anyone would want to NOT display a date. It just seems silly to me, UNLESS they are trying to repost old posts and have them perceived as new because they haven’t time to come up with content. I’m a quarter away from leaving speculation and becoming judgmental, so I’ll stop there. lol

  20. I would agree with this post, but my posts don’t have dates on them. They’re in the comments but don’t show up next to the post.. It’s something the designer made which I can’t change πŸ™ otherwise in my layout, I have the date option enabled. I can edit most things in themes but dunno about this. It is annoying though!

  21. Wonderful post Ashley, and I completely agree. I often I open up a bunch of blogs to go on a commenting spree, and if they don’t have dates it annoys me. How am I supposed to know your last post wasn’t posted 2 years ago if you don’t label it, you know? Thanks for sharing this and, as always, fabulous post! ♥

    Zoe @ Stories on Stage recently posted: Vanishing Girls
  22. Yes! I completely agree with you! Especially when I’m looking at blogging tips. I always want to know how recent the article is and when I can’t find a date it drives me crazy.
    And thank you, your article just made me realize that while I can see the date for our posts on my computer, I cannot see it on our mobile view. Off to figure out how to correct it. πŸ™‚

    1. Yeah blogging tips and anything social media/tech related NEEDS a date!!

      Good luck adjusting your mobile theme. πŸ™‚

  23. Hahaha i understand your fury. I am a bit uncomfortable with my blog posts not having a date. My blog was designed by Hazel of staybookish, maybe she forgot to include it. I was bothered by it but then I kept bothering her with complaints so…i was too shy to tell her about that complaint HAHAHA

    Chyna @ lite-rate-ture recently posted: None of the Above by I.W. GREGORIO
    1. Aw! You could definitely mention it to her. It’s literally one line of code like this:

      <?php the_time( 'F jS, Y' ); ?>

      That will show the date like this: May 5th, 2015

  24. In a book or food blog I don’t mind if there are not dates. I usually don’t even notice if there are or are not. But if I’m reading about blogging tips or social media, then yes, I’m not going to keep reading if I don’t see a date. What’s the point about reading the best image dimensions for each site if those have changed 4 times since the post was published?

  25. I love this post Ashley! πŸ™‚ i also hate it when they don’t put dates in their blog posts, especially when that particular post is an online CSS/HTML tutorial because it irritates me not knowing whether the information is outdated or not. πŸ™ I mean, who knows how long that blog post had been there with all the information getting very old and useless, and there I am having high hopes that maybe that post would help. *sigh* They should REALLY put dates! I feel much comfortable knowing when it was posted!

    Jillian @ Jillian's Books recently posted: Somewhere at Las Islas Filipinas
  26. Ugh, I hate this!! I’ve been seeing it a lot on news sites I visit, ones that aren’t the big name news stations. I’ve been getting annoyed with it a lot. Especially this one site, they keep changing their layout, I guess trying to make it work everywhere, and it keeps going from mobile friendly, to non mobile friendly, to responsive, to like 1996 Xanga coding, with dates, no dates, bad fonts, etc etc etc. I also dislike when it’s hard to find the author name on a blog that you know has quite a few contributors. There are some blogs (like a Blizzard news one I follow) where I want to know who wrote the article because then I have a general idea of what their opinions are before I jump in and start raging at their opinion. Because if I am reading something for casuals I want to know it isn’t written by the hardcore, casual hater because then it won’t be worth my time. I’m rambling, but really, meta info is important to me. I like it to be easy to see. I like the date and author at the top and the rest at the bottom of the post. It just makes things neater. It should be a rule or something.

    Ariel @ Fictively recently posted: A Fictive Week (7) We have a tooth!
  27. I can think of only a few things off the top of my head where a having dateless blog posts being okay. I met a person at a conference who was an avid photographer. She liked to blog and have a website but knew that personal referrals/local people made up the vast bulk of her side-business. Each of her posts were photo journals of sessions. She didn’t intentionally make the posts not have a date, it was just something in her website’s theme that she never bothered to fix. She said she didn’t care as she wanted people to focus more on the photos anyway.

    Food/recipe blogs also come to mind. Maybe career blogs…maybe. I know The Muse (themuse.com/advice) recently removed the dates from their posts because they didn’t want people going on their site for say cover letter or interview tips, seeing the post being from 2012, and then turning away. It works for them for the most part but their are some posts they publish that deal with technology where an included date would REALLY help people.

  28. LOL! I was cracking up at the subtitle of your image! Thank you for posting this and speaking your mind. No dates is a huge turn off and I usually leave the blog. I can’t tell if the blog is current or I am reading a post from months ago to maybe years. I think a blogger should be honest and keep the dates, even if they are on hiatus, vacation, or stopped blogging altogether.

    Julie - Being Home recently posted: May Makeover Madness – The Mudroom
    1. Thanks Nesha! At least if there’s no search box you can find ways around that.

      All WordPress site searches are http://domainname.com/?s=Search Query Here

      Or if it’s not on WordPress, you can go into Google and type:

      site:nosegraze.com Your search query here

      They’re more annoying, but at least there are alternatives if you’re REALLY dedicated. But if there’s no date! GRR! Hopeless!

    1. That’s a great way of doing it Kristie! I’ve toyed with the idea of adding the last updated date as well. πŸ™‚ I don’t have it added automatically right now, but if I ever go back and update an old post to make significant changes, then I manually add a note saying when it was last updated.

  29. The most blogs that I ever read are in my Bloglovin’, so this isn’t really a problem for me because I don’t read old posts. But honestly, I don’t know how someone can understand SEO and not understand that people will still care about it later on when it might be obsolete. Like, really? If you’re that good with SEO, then you should know that it’s going to be dated at some point.

    Shannelle recently posted: Movie Review: Insurgent
    1. I totally agree! I’ll happily read an old post if I can look at the date/title and decide that it’s still relevant. I don’t want the blogger to try to make that decision for me.

  30. I think it really depends on the content. In some cases (for instance, a book review), the date may not matter much, because the content isn’t time-sensitive. However, on the whole I prefer to see the date and decide for myself whether it matters or not.

  31. I wonder why this is a thing, I recently stopped by a blog to check for a tour stop and I had no clue when the posts where published and whether her stop wasn’t up yet or I had to go back to another page to find it. It was annoying.
    I like to know when the last post was published just because and it also says something about if the blog is still active. And indeed I don’t mind readign old posts, but I would liek to know. And that’s a good point about topics that are time sensitive, knowing the date is important in those cases.

  32. After reading your article and the postings you received I think the Yes for a date have it, now how do we change the rest of the world?

  33. Hi! I very much agree with you that a post needs a date. I am using wordpress.com and I do not know coding. Many themes I tried have date below the post. people may not be interested to scroll the whole post to see the date. Do you know any themes which have date below or above post title just like yours. Thanks in advance.

  34. I am soooo with you on this – it almost seems when dates were dropped from permalinks to benefit our SEO, bloggers dropped dates all together, from everywhere!! Drives me nuts!!

  35. Oh boy. Ashley, I’ve just read your post (with which I agree wholeheartedly!), and all the comments as well – but unfortunately I’ve just double-triple-checked and there is not a single date showing on this blog post of yours, or on any comments.

    This is when accessing from my iPhone running mobile safari.

    Figured you’d want the heads-up! Your mobile theme is doing what you hate :p

Recent Posts

    Random Posts