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IMBA has got its act together with a new site!

nrthrnben's picture

By nrthrnben - Posted on 10 September 2011

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

[Mod. moved to Australia]

Rob's picture

How'd you notice that so fast? From what I can tell it switched over Sep 7.

Flynny's picture

Member email Rob:)

Rob's picture

FYI, their original site was built by yours truly in about 3 hours as a temporary measure and was hosted gratis all that time. It's taken them well over a year for the upgrade to come good <rolls eyes>.

nrthrnben's picture

Just like to keep my finger on the pulse to relevant issues that are going to help OZ mtb.

I have not become a member yet mainly becuase of IMBA OZ not communicating at all through there website, and keeping us all in the dark until recently.

That was mighty kind of you Rob

Should we all become a member Of IMBA OZ, if so why, and what should we see as a return on our investment in northern sydney?

Rob's picture

Well, to be honest I thought IMBA Aus would not be as commercial as they are, and how things have worked out is a bit of a dissapointment.

I struggle with the obvious conflict of interest their commercial model brings.

Rob's picture

Or put it this way... would you join or become an affiliate of a club run by World Trail?

Why I bring this up is that World Trail and IMBA Aus would seem to be in commercial competition.

Both these ventures benefit from riders on the ground campaigning for what they love, but I find one a lot more honest in it's approach is all. This is only my personal, perhaps jaded, view of course Eye-wink

Hop fiend's picture

why do they need to be in commercial competition in the first place?

hawkeye's picture

I have to say I don't have too much problem with their having commercial operations. I'm not sure why we get hung up on them making money for the value they provide. We don't criticise bike companies for making profits - it's how they stay in business so they can continue providing us with nice toys.

In fact, I'd go so far as to say it might well be poor form to muzzle the ox while it's treading out the grain. We get benefit from their work. Why should they not get compensated for it?

nrthrnben's picture

as per hawkeyes comment, however I think what rob was getting at is that IMBA come accross as a not for profit organization but really they are getting paid for what they do.
And this is fine as its like we are all paying a little to have a big professional front to call on when needed.
IMBA oz make money from memberships and consulting at this stage.

World trail are a trail construction company that also does consultancy and are so succesfull becuase its owner is a legend (literaly) and he is deeply involved in the Australian mtb scene, and thus has our best interests at heart and builds sweet trails accordingly.

So if we pay for IMBA membership how does it work where do they attribite the funds? is it where the most memberships are comming from, or do they just follow the need for help?

Rob's picture
I think what rob was getting at is that IMBA come accross as a not for profit organization but really they are getting paid for what they do.

I think you are close there Ben. Won't say more as there are some issues around this point I don't want to discuss publicly. However, look at how a few organisations present themselves (bold mine):


The International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit educational association whose mission is to create, enhance and preserve great trail experiences for mountain bikers worldwide.

Compare this to

IMBA Australia’s objectives are to advocate for access, to gain recognition as the authority on all aspects of MTB trail management and to become the pre-eminent source of professional advice.

Then look at people like and - obviously offering a paid service, not pretending to be a club or anything else.

Looks like IMBA Aus, World Trail, Dirt Art and others like them can all make a bob or two from advocates on the ground doing their thing and working to gain access. That is - they all take cash from land owners needing their services after people like you and me spend quite literally years lobbying said land owners. That one of them also wants to take money from average punters (as well as taking advantage of those many hours of campaigning effort) just feels a little wrong to me.

Mind you - while we are on the 'feels a little wrong' theme, the fact that the vast majority of bike riders do SFA towards trail advocacy fits in that basket too (thank you if you don't fit into that basket - I hope you can see your efforts are getting somewhere!). I guess there's a lot of 'wrong' things still going on, but hopefully this will slowly change. You can but hope, eh?

Macr's picture

Just wait to the corporate lawyers for the Defence force see the roundel.

Flynny's picture

The kangaroos are sooo facing the opposite ways macr Smiling

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