Here’s a lovely idea that I wish more mainstream publishers would copy: The University Press of Kentucky is dishing out free e-books in exchange for selfies of readers holding their UPK print title.

“Do you own a print copy of a University Press of Kentucky title and wish you had the ebook too?” states the University Press of Kentucky Ebook Loyalty Program Tumblr page. “Send us a digital photo of you holding the book to receive the electronic edition for free!”

You can see some of the results here:

University of Kentucky

And here:

University of Kentucky

For now, only PDF format e-books are available. But all the same, what a generous gesture, and what a great marketing idea. And what sheer, unadulterated fun.

University of Kentucky


  1. LOL, the first picture gives the impression that you can go to a book store and get someone to take a picture of you holding each of their books. I don’t think that’s what they had in mind.

  2. I love the bookmarks in the Plant Life of Kentucky picture.
    Of course, these print books started life as a PDF so its not a great cost to provide copies. Sure, some of these images may well be fabricated in the book shop sans purchase but even that is a great deal for the publisher. The PR value of these images far outweigh the cost of that PDF.

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