From Print to Digital: The Current State of Motorcycle Media
Little did I know when I first got a computer and wandered onto the Internet in the early 1990s how tied together the digital world would be with motorcycles. Sure, I found like-minded individuals on Usenet, but that was only just a hint of things to come—the Mosaic web browser changed everything in 1993.
Fast forward 25 years and the motorcycle media landscape looks considerably different. The print version of Ultimate Motorcycling, as well as countless other publications, have ceased to exist. Instead of wanting a pile of sheets of folded paper with a few staples holding it all together (okay, we used perfect binding, but you get the idea), the market has spoken.
You’re now able to hold a digital Ultimate Motorcycling magazine on your smartphone or tablet, and I trust you find it satisfactory. While my job of curating the best possible motorcycle-related information for you is unchanged, many people at Coram Publishing have worked hard to make that transition from paper to pixels as enjoyable for you as possible.
While I admit to missing Ultimate Motorcycling magazine in print, I plead guilty to loving the digital delivery of information. I can access far more information about the subject I’m perusing, and it requires simply a tap or swipe of my fingertips. It’s not magic, but even Merlin would have been astonished.
The hundreds of thousands of readers of the digital edition dwarf our audience in the print days. While many consider social media, influencers, and engagement marketing to be the best methods of reaching an audience of motorcycle enthusiasts, I believe the number of motorcyclists who read Ultimate Motorcycling speaks for itself—loudly and forcefully.
We are still here because you value objective, enthusiastic, and thoughtful observations on the motorcycle riding life. It is our goal to bring that to every single story we write, whether it be a test of a new motorcycle, a trip we took, or an accessory we think you need to know about.
The best part is—in the digital domain it’s easy for our readers to keep us honest. If we make some sort of error, we will hear about it. Although I’m something of a perfectionist—a difficult inclination in the Internet era—I have done my best to make it work to my advantage, even when I can’t quite reach a flaw-free state.
Editing Ultimate Motorcycling has changed over the years due to the new digital outlets. While our core values of honesty and fairness remain unaltered, I have learned to loosen up the voice of our content a bit.
It has been quite a journey from the days of Robb Report MotorCycling, which was designed to be read in your study, to Ultimate Motorcycling, which a good number of you read on the go.
Different settings require a different approach, and we want you to feel that our magazine is as much fun to read as it is informative. However, regardless of where you read Ultimate Motorcycling, my goal is for you to feel respected as a reader, and we feel it in return—you keep coming back.
Now, motorcycles are embracing computers at a rapid pace. Mind-bending technologies such as cornering ABS are now joined by cornering traction control, which you can read about in my feature on the 2018 Triumph Speed Triple RS.
Just as there are more exciting technological advancements in motorcycles to keep the future looking bright, we hope to bring you a constantly evolving and improving magazine to match the motorcycles. Thanks for joining us for the ride.
From the latest digital issue of Ultimate Motorcycling, hosted on an interactive app. Subscribe to the Ultimate Motorcycling app today.