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Old November 1st, 2016, 02:58 AM   #1
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The next generation of motorcyclists, and how to keep them alive

Now, in this post, I'm going to make some generalizations based on my own anecdotes. If your own experience contradicts mine, please let me know. This is also a long one, but I think it's an important discussion. Please let me know what you think.

With the popularity of motovlogging, motovlogging has started to become a lot of peoples' first introduction to motorcycling. It becomes more and more of a realistic possibility to these 15-20something year olds that they could also start doing this. All they need is a bike and a gopro. The most popular of these vloggers are those who do squiddy things like burnouts, buying a bike too big for them, never looking to expand on their technique, arguing with motorists, stunting in places that don't call for it, and quite a few other things. It's more and more often that I see motorcycles with a YummiR6 sticker on them, and that concerns me.

In short, motovloggers don't seem to bring in new riders. They just bring in new squids. I don't think all of these people are squids at heart, though. I'd wager that a lot of them simply don't know any better, and see the bike as an opportunity to connect with a whole new culture of people, and motovlog squids are all they happen to be exposed to.

Now, I'm all for personal freedom and being yourself. Just as much, though, I'd like these folks to learn what they can, and would like legitimately useful information to be more accessible. I admire what the ninjette forum is. It has a level of wisdom and kindness that rivals /r/motorcycles, and that's quite something. Trouble is, these forums are a tiny blip in terms of motorcycling on the internet. I'd like information on riding technique, ego management, and all the important stuff to be more easily exposed. I found this forum because I searched "ninja 250 forums," the day I got my bike, because I love to soak up information on things that I'm passionate about. Not everyone is the same way.

So, how does ninjette, or the resources ninjette relies on, become more accessible to the motovlogging community?
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Old November 1st, 2016, 04:07 AM   #2
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Your wish is to provide useful information... i.e. instruction.

There are already many resources out there... Ken Condon's Riding in the Zone, for example, and lots and lots of youtube videos from people like CaptCrashIdaho. Pick a topic, do a video search and you'll find vast amounts of useful content.

Just not in motovlog form, because motovlogs aren't really set up to teach anything.

The thing about motovlogs is that they're inherently narcissistic, not instructional. POV video from some random rider prattling on about this or that... I have yet to see one that I could tolerate for more than a minute.

A year or two ago I picked up some action cameras to film my track riding. Of course I did test runs on the street. I can't stand watching it... even though it's my own riding on roads I love. It's just BORING.

Contrast this with actual instruction or how-to. Here's an excellent example of video used effectively:

Link to original page on YouTube.

In an attempt to answer your question about attracting new riders through motovlogging, though... think about how social media (which motovlogging is a form of) works. Content that, on the surface, looks interesting generates activity, and activity raises profile, which generates more activity and so on. So you need clickbait content. Ever wonder why you see so many motorcycle videos with the obligatory thong-wearing woman on the back of a sportbike as the still pic? That's why.

See where this is heading? It's the same kind of least-common-denominator crap that causes sensational, squid behavior to rise to the top. Far more people want to see fails and stupid human tricks than want to actually learn anything useful. Which is why the squid vloggers are so popular.

Want to attract more eyeballs? Create more compelling content, and a lot of it. Flood the web so that it can't be missed.

Want to attract people who are engaged and want to learn? Create more of what's out there in abundance already... good forums, good instructional video, thoughtful writing.

You're talking about a subset of a subset of a subset... new riders, eager to learn more, who also like motovlogs. That's not a big cohort IMHO.

People don't adopt the squid attitude because of what they encounter on the net. The attitude is there... it just gets reinforced. You're not going to take the "I NEED AN R6" moron and magically turn him/her into a careful, thoughtful rider through a motovlog. Those like you who think clearly and rationally about this stuff are already looking for places like this. They'll quickly lose interest in squid content.

I haven't owned a Ninjette in years, but I'm still here because of the quality. Sure, I have an account at gixxer.com but I hardly ever go there... because while there's some useful stuff, most of it is exactly what you'd expect.

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Old November 1st, 2016, 06:19 AM   #3
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I'm just going to say it. 99% of motovlogging is horrid.
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Old November 1st, 2016, 06:38 AM   #4
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The only hope is probably parents teaching their kids to ride, like I did with mine. Before that, I gave rides on the back, and that was not only fun, but showed that it's possible to have fun without much clowning around. If you let your kids' friends get them into riding, you'd better get involved. If a kid thinks bad behavior in a video looks like fun, he'd headed for trouble in every aspect of life.

So the summary is: Good behavior of a young person depends on his or her parents doing their jobs well.
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Old November 1st, 2016, 03:15 PM   #5
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The only hope is probably parents teaching their kids to ride, like I did with mine. Before that, I gave rides on the back, and that was not only fun, but showed that it's possible to have fun without much clowning around. If you let your kids' friends get them into riding, you'd better get involved. If a kid thinks bad behavior in a video looks like fun, he'd headed for trouble in every aspect of life.

So the summary is: Good behavior of a young person depends on his or her parents doing their jobs well.
So you are saying I'm the great white hope for teaching 3 of my 4 kids to ride?
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Old November 1st, 2016, 03:44 PM   #6
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Of course, and I hope you ride with them as often as you can.
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Old November 1st, 2016, 05:54 PM   #7
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So you are saying I'm the great white hope for teaching 3 of my 4 kids to ride?

Kind of a heavy weight on your shoulders huh . Aw, it's good fun though! Riding with the kids is still the most fun I have on a bike, grandkids are a close 2nd!
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 03:41 AM   #8
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Fair points, everyone. Interesting, though. With my dad, he had little information available to him. He said the only thing he did was look at parts in catalogs, and never looked at any other motorcycle literature. Thank goodness he could only afford a CB200 or I probably wouldn't be around today.

I know that not everyone can be saved, and few can have their minds changed. I'm just always looking for little holes in my life and trying to fill them if other people have the same issue. Maybe I'm being a bit too picky with what I concern myself with, while "not my circus, not my monkeys," doesn't seem to be a satisfying excuse anymore.

A little off-topic, but a strange piece of advice my dad gave me was that, when I crash, I should try to get on top of my bike as it's sliding down the road. He said it's saved him a few times. I think I'll just continue wearing my gear and try not to roll when I crash, instead.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 06:48 AM   #9
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I'm not sure how old you are, "yes", but my father grew up in the depression. He and his brothers had to really work at it to be able to buy things like cars and motorcycles, and from the stories I heard, they weren't interested in clowning around or showing off much, especially in any way that might wreck the vehicles. If a kid now grows up with parents that make sure their kids get everything they want, but no supervision, the kid may behave differently.

I can't even imagine saving up to buy a motorcycle, finally reaching my goal, and then going out and stunting to impress my friends without worrying about getting hurt or wrecking my bike.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 06:55 AM   #10
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Your father and mine, as well as you and me, come from different Americas. That's part of the point I'm making here.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 06:56 AM   #11
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The only motovlogger I've ever been able to tolerate was CycleCruza, he always preached wearing full gear from the start and honestly because of him I'm all about ATGATT. Sure, I may look silly wearing full leathers on my little 300 but I'm at ease knowing that if I go down there's a good chance I won't end up in the hospital with burns. I recently did some work to my bike and I keep it around the corner at my friends garage, rode it around the block with only a helmet, I didn't like the feel at all, it just felt dangerous to me.

Funny story, I go out with my buddy who has a CBR600RR and we pulled up to a gas station for him. Some dude walks up to me all excited "yooo bro those are sick bikes your all leathered up you must do some crazy ****!!". I said not really, mostly play catch up with my friend lol. Once he found out it was a 300 he pretty much ignored me and spoke to my friend instead about how he rode Ducatis and how he could wheelie down the block rofl.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 07:54 AM   #12
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One of the best parts of this version of motorsport and transportation is the requirement for person to person contact. We as a species like our little groups and clique's, and motorcyling is no exception. The best way to grow the sport and have fun at the same time is to get your friends into it. Do it yourself. Step up to the plate and initiate the conversation.

I've gotten 3 ex girlfriends into riding, plus the current wife, and several of my old army buddies got bikes. If you seem like you're having fun and people see that, half the work is already done. All you have to do is gently nudge them. Guide them to buy their first beater bike. Have some fun helping them fix it up. Or accompany them to a shop/dealer if they want to buy something newer.

Either way you slice it, i've found that being vocal to your friends about the fun aspect and taking an active role in helping answer their questions is the best way to get people into the sport.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 09:43 AM   #13
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I think the advice to stay on top of a sliding bike seems reasonable. Still wearing gear, of course, and avoiding crashing if you can, but I think that if you're sliding, it would cause less damage to you to stay on top the bike rather than sliding on your own or under it.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 10:58 AM   #14
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I think the best advice is to try to get away from the bike in a crash. Even if you're sliding on top of it, if it catches something and flips, you could end up with it on top of you. I'm hoping my gear will allow me to slide to a stop without excessive damage.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 11:49 AM   #15
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Step 1- gear.
Step 2- don't crash.

If those fail, I was thinking that being on top of the bike might help keep you from getting run over by cars. They may not see a rider, but they will see a sliding bike throwing sparks. I don't know, and in a crash a person may not have much control anyway, but I guess we do what we can.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 02:12 PM   #16
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Even with no gear I would go for the rash over a 400lb bike flipping on top of me. Kick away from the bike squids!
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 04:20 PM   #17
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I must be weird then.

As a new rider, moto-vlogging puts me off of squid like behaviour. As we all know, it is possible to be safe AND have fun on your bike. Gear is affordable and comfortable. And there's no reason to speed, do burnouts or wheelies, most of us have tracks if some kind for that ****
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 04:50 PM   #18
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I must be weird then.

As a new rider, moto-vlogging puts me off of squid like behaviour. As we all know, it is possible to be safe AND have fun on your bike. Gear is affordable and comfortable. And there's no reason to speed, do burnouts or wheelies, most of us have tracks if some kind for that ****
I'm weird with you then. I'm not inclined for wheelies or burnouts or that nonsense. I could probably learn how but why?
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 05:13 PM   #19
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And there's no reason do burnouts or wheelies, most of us have tracks if some kind for that ****

You'd think that wouldn't you....but most tracks REALLY frown on screwing around, to the point of showing you the exit.
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Old November 2nd, 2016, 11:26 PM   #20
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I hereby nominate @MrAtom to be the fresh non squidly face of motovlogs on the YouTube... Best of luck; an go get em tiger!!!
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 12:27 AM   #21
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You'd think that wouldn't you....but most tracks REALLY frown on screwing around, to the point of showing you the exit.
What kind of tracks do you guys have?

My local tracks both have skid pans for mucking about, as does the drag strip.
And then there's all the various burnout competitions and the like throughout the year.
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 12:34 AM   #22
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Here in America... Land of the free; home of the brave we have rules and regulations on top of rules and regulations everywhere and about everything.
We have nice tracks that shut down for the day if too many folks go to fast.
We have great drag strips that get outlawed over noise violations.
We have all sorts of great tracks; most of them are shut down.
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 03:35 AM   #23
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We have great drag strips that get outlawed over noise violations.
One of our tracks (arguably the best as it was designed with safety training in mind) has just been shut down due to noise complaints from one person. It's literally next to the airport
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 07:03 AM   #24
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Rockville, MD had a great model airplane airport, built over a landfill, far from houses. Then a subdivision was built next to it, and the noise complaints began. First, airplanes were restricted to 4-stroke engines with mufflers only. It wasn't long after that, that the place was permanently closed.
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 08:05 AM   #25
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NIMBY - not in my back yard!

One must beg the question, if noise is an issue, why buy a house next to a race track?!

Also surely the racetracks have some legal machinery to work with to stay open and tell these guys to bugger off?

America needs MORE racetracks. The racetracks we have are few and far between and definitely a rich man's game. They typically only hold a couple track days a year for motorcycles and tend to be hundreds of dollars per day to participate. =/
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 09:32 AM   #26
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My local tracks both have skid pans for mucking about, as does the drag strip.
And then there's all the various burnout competitions and the like throughout the year.
A very appropriate place to be mucking around.

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One must beg the question, if noise is an issue, why buy a house next to a race track?!

Also surely the racetracks have some legal machinery to work with to stay open and tell these guys to bugger off?

America needs MORE racetracks.
Yeah, I often wonder about people who buy a house next to airport/racetrack/farm/whatever and THEN complain about it. Dude, it was there first.

I agree we need more racetracks, a safe place for running fast. I worked with a couple of guys who really liked to run their Subarus, but they were mostly smart enough to hit up the track days for it. Keep it to the track, where people know you're running fast.
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 09:38 AM   #27
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The track at Brainerd Mn. has that problem, when opened very nearly nobody around, now people have moved in all around and with them came the noise complaints. They're still open and even have an NHRA national meet. Why would you move into an area when you know there's a race track next door if the noise is a bother?!! Some people just aren't using their heads!
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 09:48 AM   #28
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I can't imagine a real estate agent not telling a potential buyer about a nearby track.
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 09:49 AM   #29
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This stupidity doesn't just happen to race tracks unfortunately. Back when I was still in Florida people would complain all the time about the fighter jets coming and going from Macdill AFB. Same thing with the concerts at the Florida State Fairgrounds. I wanted to be like "um....you're the dumbass that bought a house right next door to it. I'm just sayin'...."
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 10:36 AM   #30
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I can't imagine a real estate agent not telling a potential buyer about a nearby track.
Well, a potential buyer needs to learn about the area he's (she's) considering before committing. He's a fool if he doesn't drive around and see what's in the area, talk to other homeowners nearby, even talk to the local police. After signing the papers is not the time to find out there's a federal prison 1/4 mile away.
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 10:39 AM   #31
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 10:47 AM   #32
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Well, a potential buyer needs to learn about the area he's (she's) considering before committing. He's a fool if he doesn't drive around and see what's in the area, talk to other homeowners nearby, even talk to the local police. After signing the papers is not the time to find out there's a federal prison 1/4 mile away.
House flipper sees great deal for a house. To double investment only need to put an end the noise *starts_writing _letters*
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 10:48 AM   #33
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All of this assumes the complaints come from those moving in. Not necessarily.

Two recently built tracks here in the Northeast (NYST and Palmer Motorsports Park) have faced stiff and ongoing resistance from residents who were there before the tracks were. Go to either one and you'll see lots of properties for sale nearby.

In contrast, Thompson built a road course to complement the existing oval a few years ago. No reports of noise complaints... the locals appear to have come to terms with the fact that there's a racetrack there.

People hate change. If you liked living in a peaceful, remote area that's very quiet and then one day, this exceptionally noisy neighbor moved in complete with added traffic to contend with... well, I can fully understand that. Not at all surprised that people are moving away.

But moving to an area where it all exists and THEN complaining? Yeah, I'm with the rest of you.
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 02:54 PM   #34
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Old November 3rd, 2016, 04:18 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by JohnnyBravo View Post
I hereby nominate @MrAtom to be the fresh non squidly face of motovlogs on the YouTube... Best of luck; an go get em tiger!!!
Haha help me find some ear-bleeding electronic music and pick out a dumb username and I'll do it.
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Old November 4th, 2016, 03:15 PM   #36
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OMG, Mr Atom

You read my mind. I am new to riding and I absolutely love it while learning all about my bike and the sport. That being said I do watch allot stuff on YouTube about technique, safety, maintenance etc. I take what I like and can put to use and leave the rest.

I would say I am pretty open-minded and do not offend easily. However, I did come across some videos of some guy and his ABSOLUTELY RIDICULOUS BEHAVIOR CUSSING OUT DRIVERS OF CARS AND MAKING A COMPLETE ASS OF HIMSELF. Now I am all for freedom of speech and on and on, however this guy was a complete idiot. I feel embarrassed for him.

I worry about people like that. With that temper and behavior he has no business being on the road, much less a motorcycle. The only good that will come from him documenting it would be somebody using it against him in court when the time comes that somebody does get hurt. Very annoying!
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Old November 4th, 2016, 10:01 PM   #37
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I mean, I'm at least glad they're on bikes and not in cars because they're putting others in less danger.
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Old November 5th, 2016, 12:05 AM   #38
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Haha help me find some ear-bleeding electronic music and pick out a dumb username and I'll do it.
MrAtom sounds great... An I have plenty of music already picked out... Got your go pro yet???
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