Well, the first full year of ADVRider’s new front page has ended. In total, we published over 520 articles in 2019. We’ve had some interesting and controversial stuff posted here and you have taken the time to tell us what you think.
So to cap off 2019, we thought we’d let you know which of those articles had the most comments during the year.
We told you about a class-action lawsuit brought by a motorcyclist who claimed that certain BMW motorcycles had faulty gear indicators and that the indicators were a safety hazard. Most of you thought that the lawsuit was a scam designed only to line the wallet of the complainants. Many others thought that the gear indicator was nice to have, but in no way constituted a safety hazard.
Many of you added that BMW should still have to fix the faulty gear indicators. A small number thought that the gear indicator could be a hazard if it indicated neutral when the motorcycle was actually in gear. Ultimately, 450 of you took the time to provide your thoughts on this topic. The article is also the most read front-page article with nearly 43,000 views.
The second most commented article on the front page contained a poll asking you whether you would support a carbon tax on motorcycle emissions. About 57% of you answered that you would not support such a tax and that carbon taxes were merely a revenue-generating tactic. A little more than 30% of you said you would support one in one form or another.
But ultimately, it was in the comment section that you let your feelings be known. The vast majority of you voiced your frustration and concerns about carbon taxes. The number one concern was that carbon taxes were merely another way for the government to raise revenue. Many of you also felt that the revenue obtained would not really help reduce emissions. In all, you left 346 comments on this controversial issue.
With the rise of electric motorcycles and the increase of manufacturers, electric motorcycles seem to be gaining traction all over the world. So we asked you whether you thought electric motorcycles might eventually wipe out internal combustion engine motorcycles. 303 of you took the time to respond.
Most said that internal combustion engine motorcycles were here to stay. However, many also felt that electric motorcycles could be an alternative in the future. Your greatest concerns centered around an electric bike’s range, recharge time and recharging infrastructure, with a bike’s range being the issue cited the most.
The city of Springfield Massachusetts is having a problem with illegally operated dirt bikes (and ATV) being ridden dangerously on city streets. In most cases, the machines were not registered and/or insured. Many of the machines were stolen.
So the city proposed seizing the offending dirtbikes when they were captured and even considered crushing the machines. We asked you whether you thought the city of Springfield’s solution would help with their problem and 285 of you responded.
The comments were an interesting mix of support for Springfields’ proposal, while others thought that the city had no right to seize the bikes and worried about constitutional issues. Others worried that stolen bikes were crushed, the only person that was losing anything was the legal owner of the machines.
Ultimately, most of you agreed that the illegally operated dirt bikes were a significant problem and that something needed to be done about it.
This article discussed Harley-Davidson’s upcoming and first attempt at an ADV bike. The Bear was not so thrilled with the new Pan America’s look and said so. He did, however, talk about what could have been considered Harley-Davidson’s first ADV bike, the WLA which was a bike produced during World War II and wondered whether Harley should have taken some design clues from that model.
Most of your comments about the article centered on the new Pan America. Some thought the bike was ugly while others really liked the look. Most wished Harley-Davidson success with their new machine and suggested that they would be happy to take a look at the new bike once it entered production. All totaled, 228 comments were left on the topic.
This article asked what seemed to be a fairly straightforward question. It asked what the difference was between dual-sport and adventure bikes. There were lots of varying opinions but ultimately the consensus could be phrased as:
- A dual-sport is a dirt bike that you can ride on the road.
- An adventure bike is a street bike you can ride in the dirt.
The question itself raised more than a few hackles among you. Some claimed most “adventure bikes” rarely were taken off-road. While the “dual sport” riders were the true adventurers. It did highlight that there are significant disagreements as to what adventure was. When the comments had ended, there were 208 entries in the comment list.
With Utah becoming the second state in the US to legalize “lane sharing”, we published a poll asking whether you would take advantage of lane sharing if it were legal in your state/country. Ultimately, about 46% of you said you would take advantage of it if it was legal. 40% more of you chimed in that you would only lane share under certain conditions like stopped traffic or other less active conditions. Just under 15% of you said that you wouldn’t take advantage of lane splitting.
So less than half of us would take advantage of the practice in all legal circumstances while nearly half of us said only under certain conditions. Combined, 86% of us would take advantage of lane splitting in one form or another.
Many commentators pointed out that lane sharing seemed to be much safer than sitting in stopped traffic. Some chimed in that education among four-wheel drivers was necessary. They pointed out that people in cars would often be upset with the practice of lane splitting even to the extent of blocking or swerving at motorcyclists.
Eww boy! This article made you howl. Likely louder than many of the open pipe bikes that were the crux of this article. We asked you whether you thought loud pipes on a motorcycle made it safer to ride.
As a result, there were lots of comments. Many said they did and credited a quick blip of the throttle with waking up inattentive car drivers. Other’s commented that all loud pipes did was aggravate the public at large and fuel calls for road closures. Some commented that those who thought that loud pipes were beneficial lacked the skills to ride safely and were using the pipes as an emotional and unnecessary crutch.
And the comments were filled with high emotion on both sides of the issue. You let your thoughts be known loud and clear! 183 comments were left providing opinions from many different directions.
As you can imagine, there were many different replies to this question. In the end, there was no consensus on what the best looking adventure motorcycle was. But there were many comments about well known and loved machines. There were also some excellent comments on rarer machines. When all was said and done, it was clear that the chore of determining the best-looking adventure bikes is one of emotion and passion. In all, 189 comments made it to the comment list.
This article discussed the sad story of a husband and wife riding together and a crash that they claimed was caused by grass clippings discharged into the road. The facts indicated that the husband slowed to exchange finger gestures with the man on the mower. The wife apparently did not see the husband slowing and crashed. She was not wearing a helmet and died as a result of the crash.
While the man operating the lawnmower was fined for littering, no other criminal charges were brought. The family of the deceased woman wanted a law to make discharging debris into the road a felony.
Many of you commented that you felt the cause of the crash wasn’t the lawn clippings but the husband’s slowing to exchange finger gestures with the man mowing his lawn. You also claimed that the wife’s operation of her motorcycle was negligent for failing to notice her husband slowing. Finally, you added that she was not wearing a helmet and those things were the cause of her death.
As a result, the vast majority of you said that no new laws were necessary and that the husband and wife were the actual cause of the crash, not the lawn clippings. In all, 180 comments were left on this sad topic.