Watch this mountain biker traverse the narrowest of passages

Amazing video comes via GoPro wearing rider

I’m not going to lie—for the entirety of this video, I didn’t move. Emails were ignored. Phone calls unheard. All my attention was focused on what I was witnessing on screen.

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Watching the video all the way through, it appears as though the biker / daredevil is part of some sort of competition / exhibition. Not sure the route he took was intentional; regardless, he destroyed it, and in doing so, confirmed he has a set of brass ones hanging below his waist line.

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Video looks like it was shot with a GoPro, so bear with the quality. Otherwise, enjoy:

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Reshaping the Content Strategy at Boombotix

This past week was one of the worst moments in our company’s history. In the span of a few minutes, it seemed that all of the hard work we put into making friends and partnerships in the bike community was thrown away. Boombotix was left in a position where we had made more enemies than we ever imagined.

SO WHAT HAPPENED EXACTLY?

A lot of people wondered how such an ill-advised ad could even come about. What kind of company would stoop this low? Initially, the idea of the “To Be or Not To Be” campaign was based around our athletes and affiliates having fun and comparing it to someone crashing. It was never intended to be a campaign juxtaposing two different body types.

One of our designers misinterpreted the vision, and the campaign quickly took a turn for the worse. This young designer chose an image of cyclist Ernest Gagnon, and launched the campaign without any internal review. Poor taste does not even begin to describe how Ernest’s image was used.

With administrative access to Facebook and a trial budget, the ad was aired. It was a classic case of poor workflow in a rapid growth startup. We encourage experimentation, creativity, and freedom in our startup environment. What this experience taught us is that we need to add better oversight and structure into the mix.

Within twenty-four hours, the ad circulated and we were faced with a stream of comments, messages and emails that condemned our advertisement. We immediately realized there was a problem, but we didn’t have a finite grasp of how much damage had actually been done. In three years of business, we had never dealt with an incident of this scale.

HOW WE REACTED

I didn’t even realize how bad this situation was at first. My initial apology posted on Facebook was weak considering how serious this was. As the messages continued to pour in, I realized that I had to pull back and be much more strategic about our outreach. I went to Ernest’s GoFund.me project to make a donation, and I wrote him a personal apology. On Friday, we issued a more detailed apology that was more reflective of the situation we unfairly placed Ernest in.

On top of that apology, I wanted to make sure nothing like this would ever happen again at Boombotix. Since I couldn’t get a moment of sleep, I stayed up thinking about how we could bounce back with character and integrity.

RESHAPING THE BRAND

When it comes to design, our brand has a detailed vector graphic design kit that identifies everything from color to typography. We have rules in place to make sure that all of the design we do has cohesion. Creating uniformity in our design is integral to our brand.

What I realized was that we lacked a cohesive brand identity. There was nothing on paper that described who Boombotix was. While everyone had a clear vision of the product roadmap, nobody had a clear idea of what our voice was. Our voice was primarily driven by what got “likes” and “comments.”

This might seem like an obvious piece of material that every company should have, but we overlooked it. Up until January we were a small team of four, and it was easy for everyone to be on the same page even as our mission evolved. As we’ve expanded our team over the last few months, we didn’t make the effort to ensure that everyone understood our brand’s identity. It left us in a place where the brand became vulnerable to the unfortunate ad we published last week.

Over the weekend, I channeled the lessons I learned from this event into creating a brand guideline for Boombotix. This brand guideline clearly defines what our values are: adventurous, sincere, reliable, positive, witty and inspiring. When I looked at the people that came together to embark on this journey, I realized that these were the unifying traits that we all had in us. Somewhere in the process of building a company, we lost track of our foundation.

The brand guideline I put together enables our team to continuously be creative while adhering to the ethos of what we are all about. From here on in, we plan on instilling these values in every one of our employees.

MOVING FORWARD

We’ve had the opportunity to speak to Ernest a few times and offer our apologies. He never wanted this attention, and we are at fault for putting him in the spotlight. He has been very understanding in learning more about whom we are, and how this unfortunate ad came to be published. We’ve also had the chance to learn more about his story and the impact his platform has had on numerous individuals.

In our conversations we have expressed interest in working with Ernest in a positive way. At the moment, we don’t have a definitive plan in place, but we are hopeful that we can work with Ernest to spread his platform even further.

We plan to move forward with our own initiative later this month. It will focus on positive self-image and how being comfortable with who we are can be extremely empowering. Boombotix employees, along with some of our users, will step forward to share insecurities that they’ve dealt with, and in some cases, are still dealing with.

We owe Boombotix users and the larger cycling community a lot right now. Without question the situation that we brought upon Ernest and ourselves is regrettable. We hope that our refined brand identity allows you to see us in a new light. We’re looking forward to this new undertaking and will actively seek feedback on how we can continuously improve Boombotix to be a brand that we’re all proud a part of.

With sincere regards,

Lief Storer
CEO/Founder

Briefcase scooter makes commuting to work a breeze

Electric cycle-esque scooter also holds on to all of your important work documents

If you live in any sort of over-crowded metropolitan area, commuting can be a real drag, especially when you have to try and make it through crowds while carrying a bag or suitcase of all your important work documents.

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The new Commute-Case from Green Energy Motors tries to solve both problems. It’s a suit case, sure, but it’s also a scooter.

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The Commute-Case is powered by a lithium-ion battery that takes about an hour to charge, but once it’s all juiced up, it can run you a solid 25 miles. That kind of technology’s not light, though. Weighing it at a somewhat hefty 27 pounds, the Commute-Case is a bit heavier than your typical suitcase. But if you’re packing on weight from the muscle you’re gaining while carrying this contraption around, you needn’t worry if the case can still carry you – it can actually support a weight of 275 pounds, while still achieving top speeds of about 13mph.

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It might seem like the kind of technology that’s still a few years away from being available to the average owner, but believe it or not, the Commute-Case is already available on the company’s website for just under $3,000.

If you’re like me and can’t afford something like this, then take in all of its glorious technological wonders in the preview clip below, while you’re waiting for your bus to come pick you up:

Designers make a bike out of old soda cans

A wooden frame and some mechanical pieces are all that’s needed for this can-bike

Want to recycle but hate taking the trip down to the depository. Here’s a solution: build a bike out of all your old soda cans.

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At least, that’s what Valencia-based designer Dan Gestoso did. His concept bike, called “Boske”, looks like it came straight out of an Ikea catalogue.

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The frame is made of curved, laminated wood, but mechanical pieces like the front fork and seat base are made out of aluminum taken from recycled soda cans.

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Boombotix Presents Kyle Warner

Every year we get to sync up with most of our bike crew at the Sea Otter Classic. Kyle Warner has been killing it all season long and sending us some great pics to work into our spring/summer catalogs. You might notice he’s rockin’ a Limited Edition Aluminum Boombot REX in this pic below.

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Sea Otter is always a pretty fun trip for us. I’m not going to personally be able to go this year because I have to fly to Tulsa to go pick up a secret weapon. More on that project later. I’ve never been to Tulsa, but my objective is to get out of there in no more than 12 hours. Call it a mission.

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