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Old 05-06-02, 11:54 PM   #1
Dirtgrinder
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Bicycling Magazine?

I just received my second Bicycling Magazine. The thing is, I didn't subscribe to it. Not complaining mind you, but do they ever do this to tempt possible subscribers, or should I be looking for an anonymous gift-giver?
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Old 05-07-02, 12:14 AM   #2
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You are getting closer to its true value. When they start sending you money with it, please let us know.

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Old 05-07-02, 12:16 AM   #3
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I think I would complain about receiving junk mail :=)
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Old 05-07-02, 02:53 AM   #4
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Old 05-07-02, 05:53 AM   #5
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Darn, and I just paid $2.00 for a 12 months subscription!!

I like the pictures!!
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Old 05-07-02, 06:26 AM   #6
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don't be suprised if you get a bill with your 3rd one. same thing happened to me. i can read that thing at the newstand in 2 minutes. i e-mailed strickland the editor, and he replied that -they wanted to be a short, quick mtv blurb type read. that was my last issue. i had been a subscriber in the 80's and 90's/.
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Old 05-07-02, 06:51 AM   #7
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ok, i must admit i haven't read Bicycling Magazine in about 2 years (i'm in Germany right now), but i used to subscribe and thought it was pretty good.

some time about 3 years ago they switched to a new format with shorter articles and more flashy short blurbs and i wasn't so crazy about their reducing the content and increasing the color and flashy look...

but i still thought the magazine was OK. if i remember right there was a mix of MTB, road, touring and a little about commuting/activism...

maybe it's because i'm kind of an all-round cyclist: daily commuter, MTB xCountry Racer, Road Rider, Criterium racer, long-distance tourer, + downhill/technical/singletrack

about my only complaint was that there is too much geared to buying new stuff --- but then that's just modern America - and advertisers support the magazine --- and besides, i do find that most recreational cyclists are more into buying new bike stuff than i am (average commuters buy less than i do)

so the only substantive complaints i've heard here are that it's all about racing, (and RiPHRaPH's comment that'S it's short blurbs -- has that gotten worse???) but otherwise, what do people dislike about Bycycling Magazine and which other magazines would you recommend? (i find most of the MTB magazines to be even more about racing and BUYING - which 1/2 the content being reviews of newest full-suspensions and forks and crazy expensive add-ons and disc brakes, etc.) --- and yes, i did buy my first expensive bike this March (almost $2000 for a Specialized FSR XC)

Last edited by nathank; 05-07-02 at 06:58 AM.
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Old 05-07-02, 07:25 AM   #8
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I was given a gift subscription to Bicycling,
and having been a regular reader back in the late
70's I figured, why not.
I'll tell you why not, every issue has the best newest
greatest more better bike than ever before! go ahead
sell or trash that 2 year old bike and get the new
unobtainium frame that weighs just 1.402010201 pounds.
Give me a break. The reviews are a joke, there are
no real articles about "biking" just some crap from style man
tellling us we all look like wankers or phreds because we don't
dress like cipo. Bring back the Frank Berto era,
then maybe I'll renew a subscription. I did like Bicycle Guide
even tho it was abit snobbish, but hey they folded.
If you're not a racer or don't follow the pro peloton
there really isn't anything out there
(at least not here in the states) that works as an
all round cycling mag.
. . . Ok, I'll get off my soapbox now.

Best thing about Bicycling
Short Articles
Worst thing about Bicycling
Short Articles

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Old 05-07-02, 08:55 AM   #9
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I'm not a subscriber to Bicycling, but I purchased an issue while I was on Vacation and desperate to get my cycling fix. It was horrible! I finished the entire issue during one session on the throne! I would not suscribe to it, based on reading that one issue.

I do subscribe to BIKE, and DIRT RAG. BIKE is getting weak, the articles have little substance, and I see the trend towards shorter articles and quicker reviews. But the pictures are oh so sweet!

Dirt Rag rocks, it's pretty core and discusses all the fringe and mainstream aspects of mt biking. The articles have substance and the reviews are truthful and believable, (kinda similar to my thoughts on the same products)

I have in the past suscribed to Mountain Bike, but was getting tired of the political banterings and Zap's attempt of shocking articles to stir interest. I thought their reviews we most definately "Advertiser influenced" The bigger the ads, the better the product!

I also suscribed to Mountain Bike Action and liked the magazine overall. Their reviews were also "infulenced", but not to the same degree. I always enjoyed Richard Cunninghams articles. My problem was I counted the # of pages with articles and compared that to the # with ads and was shocked at the ratio.

IOW, Dirt Rag is my #1, then Bike, then MBA, then Mountain Bike, then anything other than Bicycling!

L8R
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Old 05-07-02, 09:00 AM   #10
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My favorite by far is Adventure Cycling.
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Old 05-07-02, 09:03 AM   #11
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about 3-4 years back i noticed about a 60% decrease in the amount of time required to read all articles cover to cover (not ads of course)

hmm... sounds like the trend i noticed then of exchanging content for Flash has really gotten out of hand...

too bad, b/c a few years back i thought Bicycling had some really great content

in Germany i haven't found a great bike magazine yet either - Bike and MountainBike are the most popular... MountainBike is similar to the US one (not sure if same or not) and Bike is really thick and heavy but with lots of adds, but at least there's some significant content (for me it takes quite a while to read all the articles b/c my German's good but it's not like reading English) - and both are super-heavy on the 'newest, latest, greatest' rather than concentrating on riding techniques or training or repair or sound commuting advice... yeah, great pictures, but i don't really care...
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Old 05-07-02, 09:39 AM   #12
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For the most part i read bike,mountain bike,mba,and dirt rag.However the only one i subscribe to is dirt rag.
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Old 05-07-02, 10:03 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dirtgrinder
I just received my second Bicycling Magazine. The thing is, I didn't subscribe to it. Not complaining mind you, but do they ever do this to tempt possible subscribers, or should I be looking for an anonymous gift-giver?
Did you make a recent purchase from Nashbar?
I don't know if they still do this, but when I made my first purchase from them a few years ago I received a "complimentary" subscription.

It's an OK magazine but.. . At least you're not paying for it ----- yet.
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Old 05-07-02, 10:06 AM   #14
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I have a "gift subscription," of sorts. My dad had a choice of magazines for some offer, so he decided to pick, "Bicycling" magazine so he could mail them to me.

What can I say? After all, when I read things like, "How to Pedal Like Lance," and "The 10 Sexiest Legs," I can't see it's any worse than the other mags at the grocery checkout.

(I can pedal like Lance now, only not as fast...my legs are sexy just like they are: hairy! )

But I'll keep scanning them for occasional "nuggets."
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Old 05-07-02, 10:26 AM   #15
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Beware of free issues. About 5 years ago I did their "try 2 issues for free and don't pay if you don't want the mag" thing. Well, after 2 issues I decided not to get the mag and just ignored the bill. Even though I didn't get the magazine, the bill went to collections. I spent 6 months trying to straighten out a $12 bill to save my credit rating!
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Old 05-07-02, 12:09 PM   #16
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nathank - Tour is great. And German!

Cheers...Gary
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Old 05-07-02, 05:33 PM   #17
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In defense of Buy, er, Bicycling...

Folks, the same comments have been bouncing around the net since back when the only Internet cycling resource was a single newsgroup named rec.bicycles. And I don't necessarily disagree, but consider...
It hits a target demographic... ~first year, reasonably serious cyclists. The magazine hasn't gotten worse so much as you've gotten better. Invariably, when readers gain enough experience that much of the information is no longer "news," and the subject material cycles (like the annual "prepare for your first century"), the ridiculous claims on the cover get stale, and people tend to discredit the mag. Most of the information is reasonably good, and it's pretty obvious in their reviews that they've got an agenda, so you take it with a grain of salt. For a subscription cost that's about the same as one cup of coffee / month, it's worth it to me.
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Old 05-07-02, 05:56 PM   #18
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If Bicycling didn't tell us we all need $5000 bikes,who would.They are better than nothing,but I don't think they do enough to promote cycling.They only shine the light on the high-end Mt Biker and Roadies and make the rest look like beginners.Cycling should be for EVERYONE and promoted as such if we ALL don't want to be seen as FREAKS.Know what I mean?
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Old 05-07-02, 06:12 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by roadbuzz
Most of the information is reasonably good, and it's pretty obvious in their reviews that they've got an agenda, so you take it with a grain of salt.
Road, I agree.

It's all in fun!
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Old 05-07-02, 06:22 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by hillyman
If Bicycling didn't tell us we all need $5000 bikes,who would.They are better than nothing,but I don't think they do enough to promote cycling.They only shine the light on the high-end Mt Biker and Roadies and make the rest look like beginners.Cycling should be for EVERYONE and promoted as such if we ALL don't want to be seen as FREAKS.Know what I mean?
Yes, I certainly do.

I view the art of cycling as utilitarian, practical, euphoric and independent. Yet I have a soft spot in my heart for anyone on a bike: tropical bird look-alike or slow-moving, baseball-hat-wearing fellow on the sidewalk.

I hope they feel the same about me!
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Old 05-07-02, 10:30 PM   #21
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I learned today that Bicycling Magazine and Mountain Bike Magazine have been merged. Four editors have been let go. This from Bicycle Retailer magazine. This may be an answer to some of the well-founded complaints about Bicycling's basic lack of meaningful content.
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Old 05-08-02, 04:19 PM   #22
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Cut and merge is the mantra of the times.I learned alot from Bicycling over the years,it was always a little at a time.I know they can't tell us everything at once or theres no use putting out the next issue.BUT! talk a little about roadbikes,mountainbikes,touring bikes,hybrids,cyclocross,bmx,bents,beach cruisers,high wheelers,those neat little tiny bikes drunken Shriner clowns ride and all the people and ALL the equipment that goes behind it.Then put my picture on the cover and you got a magazine!One I'd buy anyway
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Old 05-11-02, 12:34 PM   #23
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Aw Man! I just this last week used a portion of an Amazon.com gift certificate for a one-year subscription to Bicycling Magazine! I wanted a well-rounded magazine because most I've seen are geared almost exclusively to mountain biking or racing. Now I read these posts. Crapola! Is there any mag out there that would better suit? I'm open to all suggestions should I find that BM doesn't fit the bill.

Dammit! I knew I should have opted for that Zinn manual! :irritated

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Old 05-11-02, 02:07 PM   #24
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Bicycling Mag has had many ownership changes over the years. Some for the better and some for the worse. They are out to make a profit and attempt to maximize ad income along with subscription income. The depth of the articles is somewhat shallow. For the experienced cyclist it has little new to offer other than the latest in ads.

I gave up on it more than 20 years ago as a constant source of solid information.

Wells
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Old 05-11-02, 02:18 PM   #25
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I subscribe to the mag. for about two years, but quit it in 2001, now I am with Cycle sports and Pro cycling, these two mags, are great
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