By James “Hollywood” Macecari
If it wasn’t for the biker news sites on the internet most in the biker community would have to rely on the sporadic clips in the mainstream media or magazines like Easyrider and other rags to get their news. In the old days, basically that was how a biker got information going on in the Biker Scene. Then with the advent of the internet and it’s popular growth in the 90’s bikers were able to get information from all types of sources.
1997- Biker News Network sprang up and is going strong still to this day. I’m a huge fan and follower of Biker News Network. The site does a fantastic job of pulling all the articles out there having to deal with the motorcycle club scene into one place. The ease and use of the site is fantastic. BNN has the stories broken up in categories like General News, 1%er News and so on. BNN set the standard for all Biker News sites to come.
1999 White Trash Network was similiar to BNN. Great layout and added a member chat. Don’t know if it’s still operational. Last post was July of 2017. Insane Throttle wouldn’t mind getting in talks with WTN to get it back online. It was a great website and big part of the biker culture.
2004- Biker News Online– Published by Clear Digital Media, Inc., it was one of the first enthusiast-focused, Internet-only publications on motorcycles, launched in 2004, setting a standard for other publications to follow.
2007 Biker Trash Network which is still going strong today is another great site. Like BNN they bring all the articles to their followers.
2008 Aging Rebel is an informational and editorial site.
2016 Insane Throttle Biker News– Originally started off as just a blogging site in 2011 when the first post appeared. It wasn’t until 2016 that an actual business plan was put together to turn it into a full blown information hub for the biker scene. Editorials, Social Media, Podcast such as Motorcycle Madhouse and new video shows on the Youtube Channel.
What I like about all the biker news sites available right now is the choice bikers have in getting the news they want. I’ve always believed in people having as many sources as they could to get information to make a fair judgement on something going on within the biker community.
So how does people who run biker news sites make a living?
Most of the sites are done out of love for the community and being able to contribute back to it. Mainly the only income the site has is by affiliate ads or by donations. The overhead is usually covered by the writer or owner of the site. Some writers work with other sites writing materials on other subjects, but overall the ones operating the sites are the ones who bear the cost and don’t make much money.
The way Insane Throttle is done. We have freelance writers who can publish on the platform. They can advertise themselves, market those who sponsor them and so on. Yea, Insane Throttle participates in affiliate marketing and brand deals as well as accepts contributions to help us get towards out goals. Personally, I freelance for other platforms and media outlets, do alot of consultation work for motorcycle clubs when they need help in legal situations and such. Right now I almost have “My journey through the biker underworld” done and going to the publisher soon. That will set off a book signing tour and alot of partying I’m hoping lol. I’ve also been requested by a few big clubs to write an authorized biography and do a video documentary on them. So things going good. It’s all because of you the readership and audience of Insane Throttle. Without you guys and gals none of it would be happening.
What do you think Biker News Sites need to do to become viable?
Anyone can start a Biker News Site. First all you have to do is determine the format you want to make. Is it going to be more focused on editorializing the news of the day like Insane Throttle does. Or you going to be more of an informational site where people can go to pull up articles the mainstream media has put out.
After you decide which platform you want to focus on you’re going to want to determine which web hosting you’re going to use and so on. You’re going to want to establish relationships with other biker news sites. This is important because they will be able to help you in referring readership to your site. It takes a good 2 years before the biker scene gets to know who you are. During that time it’s pretty tough to get your platform out there and get people trusting you. You have to put a lot of time and effort into SEO, back linking and getting your site to appear in search engine rankings.
The first thing people do when they get sites up on the internet is run to social media. Yes you have to have a social media platform. But when you’re starting out you have to build up your base website and Rss feed. This is the approach I took with Insane Throttle. I built up the base website which is harleyliberty.com. Right now thousands of websites, blogs around the world carry Insane Throttles Rss Feed. Meaning, when something gets published on Insane Throttle, it gets republished on those carrying our feed. This took alot of time and patience. It’s something we still work on everyday.
This is the main reason you will see us just now starting within the social media arena. Building up those medians now has become a focus because we were able to build up the main site worldwide. Right now our focus is on Youtube and Instagram. So go over there and join by clicking the links lol.
What is Insane Throttle long term goal?
The main goal Insane Throttle is working on is getting our own channel on Roku and other streaming platforms. One that is entirely dedicated to the biker scene. A channel that will feature everyday bikers doing their thing. We want to give people the opportunity to produce and showcase their own weekly show. If you run a biker building business and want to make a show, bring it over. If you are into building up hot rods and bikes, bring it over. You have a show that is tutorial in nature, bring it over. We envision a channel that has 24 hour a day programming dedicated to nothing but the biker lifestyle.
Having a channel like this will enable the normal everyday biker get out his/her message to the biker community. Help them build a brand and hopefully become successful. Don’t know about you, but I’d rather watch an old school scooter tramp build a bike than those dorks over at OCC.
This is the reason why we are on a Youtube Channel subscription push right now. When the Youtube Channel reaches 50,000 subscribers, a channel on Roku would be a viable goal. If people have the interest in the programs on Youtube. Than we can move forward on that goal. If you have a program idea in mind and would like to throw it on the Insane Throttle Youtube Channel get ahold of me firstname.lastname@example.org.
Insane Throttle Facebook Question of the Day– What do you think of a 24 hour Biker Channel on Roku and other streaming platforms?