‘We want more crime on public transport’ – a message from An Post

It also wants to see ‘more commuters missing their stop’ ... but all for a good reason


“We want more crime on public transport.” The big new billboards with arresting slogans (“We want more minds altered in coffee shops” is another) just might make you look twice this week.

An Post, having taken over sponsorship of the Irish Book Awards, is pushing for more people to read books, and has launched a #ReadersWanted campaign, “to encourage all kinds of people to pick up a book and get reading, in more places, more often”, says head of corporate communications Anna McHugh.

“We know there are many people out there who loved reading at some point in their lives but may have fallen out of the habit. They keep meaning to get back to it but life gets in the way.

“We want to remind people of the power of reading: its ability to challenge and alter minds, bring parents and children together, to break down social barriers and entertain.”

So An Post has a billboard, public transport and digital and social media campaign starting today, to encourage people to read more.

“We want more commuters missing their stop,” the posters say. “We want more torches under duvets.” And, with a small yellow book on an outstretched tongue: “Discover the most mind-altering books of the year.”

The posters’ contemporary graphic style is by Irish illustrator Mark Conlon.

An Post reckons the sponsorship is a good fit for the company, citing a long association with literacy awareness and pointing out that book delivery is now a big part of its parcels business. It is also selling postage-paid giftboxes and giftbags at post offices and bookshops, to encourage spontaneous gifting.

The Irish Book Awards has 15 categories of literary awards, to promote and celebrate excellence in Irish writing. Libraries and bookshops showcase the best books of the year, and they’re adjudicated upon by a broad electorate, including booksellers, librarians and general readers, via public voting.

The shortlist for the 2018 awards is announced at the end of October, with winners in November. The Irish Book Awards says it these are the only literary awards which have the full support of all sections of the Irish book industry.