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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 08-15-06, 01:12 PM   #1
Don Johnson
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no small contradiction

Direct from Bicycling magazine's own subscription propaganda:

"Best Cars for Cyclists: If you're looking to buy a car this year, you'll want to take a look at our preview of the 2007 best cars for cycling and the cycling way of life."

I guess my idea of "the cycling way of life" is skewed.
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Old 08-15-06, 01:30 PM   #2
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Well, yeah. My propaganda versus your propaganda versus their propaganda. It all makes sense and it's all good, we just have to find the right way to look at it. YMMV
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Old 08-15-06, 04:13 PM   #3
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You have to understand the demographic bicycling magazine markets to; for most of their readers, bikes are primarily expensive toys rather than a sole or primary means of transportation. Some readers might be daily commuters, but the bikes they advertise and right about are high end/expensive models, and most people who can afford them probably have so much money that they can easily afford a car as well.
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Old 08-15-06, 05:20 PM   #4
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Just a magazine running out of ideas. They usually do after a year. I bet they run car ads, right?
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Old 08-15-06, 06:23 PM   #5
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Just a magazine running out of ideas. They usually do after a year. I bet they run car ads, right?
Of course, all over the place...
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Old 08-15-06, 06:43 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Erick L
Just a magazine running out of ideas. They usually do after a year. I bet they run car ads, right?
Years ago, when I began experimenting with bicycle transportation I bought a copy of bicycling or one like it in a bike shop thinking it might have some useful articles on daily bike use. I couldn't find anything about luggage racks or practicalitiies. Then I did an experiment. Its amazing what you can discover by counting things. I counted the car advertisements and the bike advertisements. More car advertisements than bike advertisements in a bicycling magazine. I realized that I'd have to figure this bike transportation thing out on my own. The magazine existed by selling cars and pushing car culture. It seems like the magazine hasn't improved over the years.
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Old 08-15-06, 07:05 PM   #7
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I don't like the car ads and they devote a lot of space to stuff and things that have little to do with riding as I practice it. But I have to say a few words for Bicycling magazine and the publisher, Rodale. Every year, they give away hundreds of utility bikes to people across America and Africa in a program called Biketown. This gives a lot of good publicity to commuting and transportation cycling, and the longterm goal is to produce a groundswell of utility riding. They have also published articles that were sympathetic to such diverse cyclists as the mentally ill and illegal immigrants in LA. These articles probably alienated some of the desirable demographic--the rec riders and SUV buyers--that Bicycling needs to be profitable. So along with the bling, there's a little zing, and at least some social consciousness.
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Old 08-15-06, 07:18 PM   #8
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But its still one of my favorite magazines. I like looking at all the bikes I can't afford. Especially time trial bikes, they just look good to me. Wish I could commute on one, with the helmet and all...
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Old 08-15-06, 08:48 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Roody
I don't like the car ads and they devote a lot of space to stuff and things that have little to do with riding as I practice it. But I have to say a few words for Bicycling magazine and the publisher, Rodale. Every year, they give away hundreds of utility bikes to people across America and Africa in a program called Biketown. This gives a lot of good publicity to commuting and transportation cycling, and the longterm goal is to produce a groundswell of utility riding. They have also published articles that were sympathetic to such diverse cyclists as the mentally ill and illegal immigrants in LA. These articles probably alienated some of the desirable demographic--the rec riders and SUV buyers--that Bicycling needs to be profitable. So along with the bling, there's a little zing, and at least some social consciousness.
There you go being fair-minded again, jeez...
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Old 08-15-06, 09:27 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by nasiralpharia
But its still one of my favorite magazines. I like looking at all the bikes I can't afford. Especially time trial bikes, they just look good to me. Wish I could commute on one, with the helmet and all...
I make every commute home into a time trial. Course I'm wearing baggy shorts on an old steel mountain bike, hunkered down like I'm "in the drops" over my flat bar.... I just set a new personal record of 15:05 for 3.5 miles--and I even slowed down for the red lights and a couple of the stop signs!

Those 5 grand bikes are real works of art and I drool over them too. I keep a couple old issues of Bicycling in my bedroom. My friends call it "Roody's bike porn collection."
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Old 08-15-06, 09:46 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roody
I don't like the car ads and they devote a lot of space to stuff and things that have little to do with riding as I practice it. But I have to say a few words for Bicycling magazine and the publisher, Rodale. Every year, they give away hundreds of utility bikes to people across America and Africa in a program called Biketown. This gives a lot of good publicity to commuting and transportation cycling, and the longterm goal is to produce a groundswell of utility riding. They have also published articles that were sympathetic to such diverse cyclists as the mentally ill and illegal immigrants in LA. These articles probably alienated some of the desirable demographic--the rec riders and SUV buyers--that Bicycling needs to be profitable. So along with the bling, there's a little zing, and at least some social consciousness.
Have you ever seen "Cycling Plus" magazine? From England, lots of commuter, and bikes as transportation articles.
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Old 08-16-06, 04:30 AM   #12
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It is pretty funny on the surface but, as others have said, it is only aiming at the readership it has most of which (evidently) drive their bikes to a place where they want to ride them!
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Old 08-16-06, 06:48 AM   #13
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I would subscribe to "Car Free" magazine, personally, if anyone put it together. It's a great and growing demographic: discuss equipment for car-free living, educate about Peak Oil and other environmental aspects of car culture, profile good car-free cities in the united states, interview city planners and authors, write tips, share stories, etc. It would obviously have a lot to say about bicycles, and hopefully attract a certain amount of bike ad money, but would be aimed specifically at the car-free or those interested in the car-free lifestyle. Oh, and of course car and oil ad money would not be welcome.

Anyone wanna pick up the banner? I'd write for it!
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Old 08-16-06, 08:19 AM   #14
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wow....a magazine for the carfree lifestyle.....I could really go for that. But for now, I'd settle for articles in BICYCLING and other magazines and newspapers that provided an accurate picture of a carfree or carlight lifestyle, not the feature from a car dependent hotshot reporter who tries to live car free for a short while when gas prices spike, doing most things completely wrong in the process.
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Old 08-16-06, 08:40 AM   #15
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"Buyer's Guide". Ha, ha. That's another name for "Special Advertising Section".

What gets me is when magazines about investing and money have their annual car buying issues. "Money" magazine even has a section about cars in every issue. It's always about which luxury sedan under 50 thousand gives you the best ride and most comfort and will make you look rich, and how to trade up to the next level without breaking the bank. One article I saw even went so far as to recommend car leasing.

The articles never mention that buying cars is one of the worst investments you will ever make, and that a wise investor should try to minimize the number of cars their family owns and the number of trips they make in them.

I guess I can understand a bicycle magazine selling out to the car companies - owning a car and riding a bike aren't necessarily exclusive. But a magazine that's supposed to be about shrewd money management owes it to its readers not to sell their articles to car companies.

I think Dirt Rag Magazine has a no-car-ads policy.
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Old 08-18-06, 10:53 AM   #16
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Consumer Reports is the biggest offender in my opinion. Ratings of cars in every issue, and every year an entire issue devoted to car buying. And I think their readership is ripe for tthe carlite/carfree message. Smart people, socially conscious, used to making comprehensive life plans....
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Old 08-18-06, 01:09 PM   #17
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Comment all you like but at the end of the day car makers
spend seriously HUGE dollars to advertise in magazines.
That said, What magazine wouldn't want a piece of that
action?

Subscriber prices DO NOT pay the magizines operating cost
where ad dollars do.
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I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

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Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?
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Old 08-20-06, 09:23 PM   #18
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I find Backpacker to be a good magazine that compliments car-free living in a strange, unintended way. I'm interested in bike-camping as well so there's another connection.

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