Selects a random article from your Pocket (former Read It Later)
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Pickpocket is a command line tool which will help you with your Pocket library. It selects a random article for you to read, opening your browser and marking it is deleted.


Pickpocket is packaged as a Ruby gem.

Install it by running gem install pick-pocket



To use Pickpocket, you first need to go through Pocket's OAuth authentication process.

  1. Execute the pickpocket oauth command
    1. This will open your web browser, asking you to approve Pickpocket's OAuth token
  2. Execute the pickpocket authorize command
    1. This will authorize your OAuth token against Pocket, creating an authorization token


  • pickpocket pick
    • Selects a random article from your list, and open your browser with its resolved URL
    • Options: --quantity, -q: quantity of articles to open. Examples:
      • pickpocket pick --quantity 5 (open 5 articles)
      • pickpocket pick -q 10 (open 10 articles)
  • pickpocket renew
    • This will synchronize your local library with your remote. Keep in mind: any article marked as read WILL BE DELETED from your remote library
  • pickpocket stats
    • Show the number of read/unread articles you have on your local library

Pickpocket Files

All Pickpocket files are stored at the ~/.pickpocket folder.

  • library_file
    • YAML file which stores your local library, marking articles as unread or read
  • authorization_token
    • File which stores your authorization token
  • oauth_token
    • File which stores your OAuth token

Don't Trust Me?

Pickpocket ships with its own consumer key, which will ask for access to modify/retrieve your articles.

If you don't like this idea, you can use your own consumer key, setting up the POCKET_CONSUMER_KEY environment variable before calling it.


POCKET_CONSUMER_KEY="my-consumer-key" pickpocket oauth

To know more about consumer keys and how Pocket deals with third party applications, read more on Pocket's Authentication API documentation.