April 13, 2017

This company makes it easier to pull a quote out of context and put it on a shitty stock photo


I generally don’t mind when someone shares a favorite quote on social media. I get it: you’re reading, you find something you like, and the urge to connect with your friends and neighbors makes you instantly reach for your cell phone. I’ve certainly done it, and as far as I’m concerned it’s a harmless practice. Best case scenario, someone asks for a book rec. Worst case, the person scrolls on by to the endless stream of puns and witticisms that the interweb offers.

Here’s what I don’t understand: people that like a quote, type it out, find a background, Photoshop-magic that fucker, and put it on their social media with hashtags.

A normal person would post this:

Reading The Tempest for the first time. I get this quote now. “We all were sea-swallow’d, though some cast again, / And by that destiny to perform an act / Whereof what’s past is prologue, what to come / In yours and my discharge.”

An annoying person on the internet does this:

(low res on purpose because they always are)

Unfortunately, as Natasha Lomas writes for TechCrunch, there is a new app that makes posting quote images even easier. It’s called Postepic. Available on iTunes (please don’t download it), it lets you take a picture of the book you’re reading, apply the text to a background, and share it with your friends.

Postepic asks its prospective users, “Have you ever come across a mind-blowing passage while reading a book and the only way to capture it was with your phone?” Um, have we reached such an advanced age that the ONLY way to store information is with high-definition pictures? 

They go on to ask, “And later you struggled to find it among thousands of other photos? And when you sent it to your friends they were not sure what to look at?” Why yes, my phone gallery is such a random smattering of dank memes that it’s impossible to find anything of value. As for my friends, I just assume that if I send them a quote they’ll read it. If they are unable to discern the meaning behind the cryptic shapes we call letters, there’s not much I can do to help them. But in any case, adding a background is not going to help with readability.

The founders of Postepic hope that this app will help people discover new books and engage young readers. Like so many of the book-related technologies that come out each year, this one probably won’t endure.

Here are some terrible ones you can make fun of. Don’t share them with me.



Peter Clark is a former Melville House sales manager.