You have got to be kidding

Okay, I’m going to come out and probably break with Anti Advertising Agency official policy, and say that I support ad-supported bike share programs. It is kind of making a deal with the devil, but the urban planning benefits have been demonstrated strongly. Getting cars out of the city, is worth the extra visual advertising. Plus people exercise, and are healthier, and are happier — bike riding is fun.

But this AdBike is just preposterous. The whole point of riding a bicycle in the city is to get somewhere. Transportation. Less space on the road. This is going to be worse than those trucks that drive around with billboards because it slows traffic down: I can’t imagine that beast of a recombent can move fast enough to remain save in the road. So its either going to stop traffic in the car lane, or dangerously take over the bike lane.

Just to give you a sense of how not-real-world this scenario is, check out his slacks and his shoes. He is wearing dress loafers. The only person who is going to be able to safely ride that bicycle in the city is going to be a real bicyclist. They are going to have serious muscles, and some kind of urban riding clothes and shoes. Like the bike taxi folk who have to work just to keep their behemoths moving. Dress slacks, that says a lot.

And all this is avoiding the fact that it looks stupid. If I were a marketer, I can’t imagine wanting my brand to show up on something that bulbous and dorky. Bikes are definitely cool. A lot of marketers and companies want to cash in on the bike = cool factor. But this bike is *not* cool. It is laughable.

And I’m restraining myself.

For more fun, check out the media kit

For more on why I like bikes, check out FoundBikes.com. Here is my ride

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2 Comments

  1. Posted August 23, 2008 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    ok, look at that thing. First, it has speakers – it actually broadcasts sound. Yikes.

    Then, on the sign it says “interactive outdoor advertising.” I’ll give you 2 and 3, but interactive?

  2. Posted August 25, 2008 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    As offensive as I find this transportation monstrosity too, my friend, I must call you out on this:

    “I support ad-supported bike share programs. It is kind of making a deal with the devil, but the urban planning benefits have been demonstrated strongly. Getting cars out of the city, is worth the extra visual advertising.”

    What exactly does the advertising do to help, here? I mean, I’m a little bit playing devil’s advocate too, ’cause I know what you’re getting at, but can’t you support bike-share programs without the ads?

    There used to be a system called corporate philanthropy, where big companies with a lot of money would simply donate to programs of public service because they care. (And because word of mouth would eventually leak out to the interested parties anyway, who showed their appreciation with the purchase of goods and services.)

    Wouldn’t a bike-share program be a perfect place to bring that kind of support back? Hopefully only for non-stupid bikes?

    I mention it because it’s really easy to forget that these things are all still possible without the advertising. And by forgiving it in bikeshare programs, we forgive it on our public streets and in our personal relationships and at our political conventions. You don’t need it!

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