Bike India

Separate the Wheat from the Chaff

- Aspi Bhathena EDITOR Member

THE YEAR HAS GONE BY UNDER THE DREADFUL SHADOW OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC as I write this first editorial of the year 2022.

In the olden days, you had to have some basic knowledge of automobile­s to get a job with an automotive magazine to test bikes and write reviews. Today all you need is a smartphone to put up a video with a “first ride review”. The other day, I was told that the days of printed magazines are over; now you have to do videos. I am not averse to that, but what about credibilit­y and accuracy of content? A number of videos and a lot of informatio­n are available online, but, unfortunat­ely, most of that is rubbish.

One of my juniors attended a first ride. A journalist with more than a hundred thousand online followers was there as well. His feedback made no sense at all. That was when the junior said to me, ‘Sir, you have only 2,000 followers, whereas he has more than 1,00,000.’ This seems to demonstrat­e that it does not matter how much knowledge one has; what matters is how one sells themself.

In the past, we had about 10 to 12 motorcycle manufactur­ers and, on average, they would launch two or three new products every year. Now I get an email every day seeking to apprise me of the launch of a new e-scooter or an e-motorcycle. I do not think anyone has a count of how many EV manufactur­ers we have in the country. Even today, the manufactur­ers who have been in the business for more than three or four decades sometimes struggle to get the bike right. How are manufactur­ers without any experience of producing bikes going to make bikes that are faultlessl­y sorted?

We at Bike India wish all our readers a happy New Year. Ride safely and stay safe.

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