Saturday, 28 April 2012


I'd appreciate it if you would let me know of any media cover on the latest TAC shock/horror antibike ad.

The TAC/Police/VicRoads promo was on the Herald Sun website on Thursday, April 26, 2012? But I have not seen anything in print, on TV or heard anything on the radio.

In my opinion that's partly because the media makes big bucks out of TAC and VicRoads.

It is also worth noting that police forces around Australia are pushing hard to have anti-association laws introduced. These laws are clearly aimed at bike clubs. The claim is that only patch clubs (OMGs)are being targeted but authorities are casting a wide net. Others will inevitably be caught in the trawl and have to prove themselves innocent. In my opinion these anti-association laws threaten many more organisations than bike clubs. In my opinion they are un-Australian.

While all this is going on the media on the east coast and in SA is covering bikie wars. And a ban on patches in Kings Cross clubs in NSW.

And the SA Government plans to introduce a massive TAC style antibike tax. The new discriminatory tax will reportedly double the cost of riding, putting it up some $300 a year. TBC.

In Melbourne the only media cover of the TAC ad by a rider was another Neil Mitchel masacre of John Karmouche on talk-back radio 3AW. I think that cost the motorcycle community any real chance of credible opposition to the ads in the short term.

From experience I know that a cold story is no story. Back in the 1980s the MRA was good with the media but a story that was 72 hours old did not exist. With today's electronic communications I reckon a story is hot for just 12 to 24 hours and we do not have a serious representative organisation to put riders' responses to stories in timely fashion.

One thing that would seriously help shorten response times would be a simple but comprehensive policy document so media releases could go out without "committee meetings".

The Independent Riders' Group (IRG) supported the joint media release initiated by the Victorian Motorcycle Council (VMC). IRG circulated the release and wrote to the Premier, media, clubs and MPs calling for a restructure of the TAC Board and a change of TAC priorities and methods. TAC ad and sponsorship money would be much better spent on rehab and the ambulance service.

It's on the blog.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group

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