Copy Selection and Link

The Copy Selection and Link command copies both

  1. the current selection and
  2. a link to the current document.

In compatible PDF apps, the link is deep, which means that when you click on the link it takes you right to the correct page and x,y location on that page. It is also available for OmniOutliner

The Copy Selection and Link command is accessible from the Action ☰ button (or ⌃Q, for “quote”).

This new command is extremely handy when you are doing research.


Here is what the link looks like:

> Perturbance is a mental state in which insistent motivators or alarms distract or otherwise influence executive processes in a manner that is difficult for reflective processes to suppress or control
Beaudoin-2020-Mental Perturbance An integrative design-oriented concept for understanding repetitive thought emotions and related phenomena involving a loss of control of executive functions-Beaudoin2020cm-10.21810sfuer.v13i1.1282.pdf

the URL is: hook://file/oSKiyKlNp?p=Qm9va2VuZHMvQXR0YWNobWVudHM=&n=Beaudoin%2D2020%2DMental%20Perturbance%20An%20integrative%20design%2Doriented%20concept%20for%20understanding%20repetitive%20thought%20emotions%20and%20related%20phenomena%20involving%20a%20loss%20of%20control%20of%20executive%20functions%2DBeaudoin2020cm%2D10%2E21810sfuer%2Ev13i1%2E1282%2Epdf#p=3&x=0&y=0&s=638&e=837

The name happens to be a long one. A file with a shorter name might have a URL like this hook://file/oSKiyKlNp?p=Qm9va2VuZHMvQXR0YWNobWVudHM=&n=Beaudoin%2Epdf#p=3&x=0&y=0&s=638&e=837

Accessing the command

To access the command:

  1. Select some text in one of the compatible apps.
  2. Invoke Hookmark (⌃H).
  3. Press ^Q (the control key and Q together).


  1. Select some text in one of the compatible apps.
  2. Invoke Hookmark.
  3. Click on Hookmark’s Action ☰ button.
  4. Click on Copy Selection and Link.

…then paste the text anywhere.

Deep PDF Links!

When you use the Copy Selection and Link command within a [compatible PDF app](apps, the link created by Hookmark will be a deep link! That means, when you click on the link, you will be taken to the specific page and line in the PDF that contains the material you’re linking to.

Here’s an example of the command applied to a PDF downloaded from ResearchGate: Mental perturbance:

Perturbance, more generally, is diminishment of the already limited human capacity to control one’s own attention with respect to a particular cluster of motives. Consider a limerent’s diary entry “This obsession has infected my brain. I cannot shake those constantly intruding thoughts of you. Every thought winds back to you no matter how hard I try to direct its course in other directions.” (Tennov, 1979 p. 49). Thus, a key feature of limerence is that meta- management processes cannot easily suppress motives nor prevent them from holding one’s attention once they surface.

In Apple’s Preview app, you can get a link and quote, but the link is not “deep” (when you click on it, it doesn’t bring you to a specific location in the PDF). That is due to a limitation in Preview.

Compatible apps

Initially, this new command is only enabled for:

  • PDFPenPro (yields deep links)
  • Preview
  • TextEdit
  • XCode
  • Skim (yields deep links)

We expect to add other apps to this list. But not all apps will be supported, given technical and functional constraints.

OmniOutliner too

You can also use Copy Selection and Link in OmniOutliner. See Using Hookmark with OmniOutliner.

Who can benefit from this?

This feature is great for researchers, lawyers, writers, students and others who work deeply with text.


If you are using a clipboard manager, you should add Hookmark to its list of apps to exclude from managing. (See this topic.)

For more information, or if you have questions, please visit the Hookmark Forum.

Disabling the command

You can disable the command by applying the following incantation in the macOS Terminal app:

defaults write com.cogsciapps.hook enableCopyLinkAndQuote 0

Be sure to press the ‘Return’ key after that.