How to use Marvin’s custom command to share books’ passages to facebook groups.

And there I go with one of my year 2014′ proposals: start blogging in English as well. I guess I’ll keep blogging in Italian for those topics interesting for people living in Italy, mostly law ones, while use English for the matters which can be useful to everybody. Enjoy!

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Most of you know that the app I would suggest everyone as ePub reader on iOS is Marvin 1 . It’s today an universal one and a really well crafted application, with plenty of space to improve. So, if you like me love reading ebooks on iDevices, trash the lame Apple’s iBooks, which lately got even worse, and get Marvin.

With Marvin, you can have custom command to perform on selected text passages of books. You define up to five custom command into settings, then if you select some text they pop up and you can choose them to perform action on the selected text.

You can use custom commands for many things such as search with google, open some app and query it (f.i.: search Terminology with the selected word)

Being a share junkie, I wrote a couple of them to send some text to some groups of mine into facebook, and I thought I would share them, maybe they can be useful to you as well.

Now, there are 2 ways to post to a facebook group via mail: using the group’s own mail address, if the admin created it. Or through an IFTTT receipt.

This is the string you have to insert into custom command menu if you want to use the group own email address:

mailto:yourgroupname@groups.facebook.com?body=%22{text}%22%0D%0A%0D%0A({author}%2C%20%22{title}%22).

That way you’ll be using the mailto: custom URL and Marvin’s predefined variables to generate a message with both the book’s excerpt and its author and title.

But posting via mail to a facebook group is buggy and sometimes it does not work.

So you can use IFTTT instead. Build a receipt with tagged mail as a trigger and post to facebook group as action. Then use as custom menu command a line like that:

mailto:trigger@ifttt.com?body=%22{text}%22%0D%0A%0D%0A({author}%2C%20%22{title}%22)&subject=#tpaleo

What is the point in building such a sharing custom command if Marvin already provides sharing features? Of course, that way you can customize mail’s content and appearance, and that’s just the reason why I did it. Plus, it’s more handy to have it at the first pop-up level, so that you can tap straight away.

Have a nice reading!


  1. While for PDF I’d suggest instead Readdle PDF Expert 5, together with Dropbox, but maybe we’ll talk about it into another post. 

About Tiziano Solignani

L'uomo che sussurrava ai cavilli... Cassazionista, iscritto all'ordine di Modena dal 1997. Autore, tra l'altro, di «Guida alla separazione e al divorzio», «Come dirsi addio», «9 storie mai raccontate», «Io non avrò mai paura di te». Se volete migliorare le vostre vite, seguitelo su facebook, twitter, linkedIn, g+ e nei suoi gruppi. Se volete acquistare un'ora (o più) della sua attenzione sui vostri problemi, potete farlo da qui.

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