Interview with Founder

Hellwig was lucky to have the chance to sit down with Tony, founder of We got introduced to Tony about a year ago when we were busy starting promotions with our Ford F150 Baja Chase Truck. He has a great forum that we are proud to be apart of. Thanks Tony for your hard work in creating a great forum, educational articles, and a place for Ford Truck Enthusiasts.

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Interview with founder
Tony Esteban
Tony Esteban

Why was created?

I created FTC because I knew I could do better. I knew I would go above and beyond and give the members much more. Myself and others were pretty active members of another forum and were really tired of how things were going, how the site was being run and how new members as well as old members were being treated, especially by the staff. I’m not going to get into specifics, but for those of you reading this that have ever been a member of a forum, you know exactly what I’m talking about! These kind of practices seem to be the standard for most forums today. A forum should be a fun place that you can always rely on to be there for you. A place for you to vent and enjoy some time with people who share similar interests without having to be bullied around. A second home so to speak!

What was your vision for the forum?

My vision for FTC was to create a forum that not only offered its members Ford truck related content and resources but also a place to unwind and get away from the stress of reality for a bit. By the time FTC was well on its way, we were able to offer the members cool features like an arcade, chat rooms and internet radio. These features we never had on previous forums. We were also able to provide members with access to (very helpful) automotive calculators, VIN decoders, axle swap info and other Ford truck related content and resources. (FTC currently offers these same features and more!)

I also realized that the members like taking pictures and sharing them with others. So when it came to hosting and sharing images, I decided to offer the members two options:

Option I: a garage to showcase their trucks and mods. Garage Link.

Option II: a gallery like Flickr where they could upload all kinds of images, videos and music files to share with the rest of the community as well as the ability to share on other sites. Gallery Link.

Sad to say but I have come across other truck forums that offer similar features BUT you have to be a “paid” member to enjoy them. A forum should be 100% free to the members, end of discussion. I decided to go a step further and offer FTC members access to cool automotive shows like MOTORZ without having to leave the site via our Automotive Television section. FTC members can even catch up on the news (updated everyday). A one stop shop so to speak for the true Ford truck enthusiast!

Were you always into trucks?

Yes, I have always had a passion for trucks… Ford trucks. The first Ford truck I was introduced to was my fathers Bronco in the early 80’s! I must have been 8 or 9 years old at the time. The Bronco was lifted, had 35 inch tires, air horns and all the works from what I can remember without having to call him to verify. As a child growing up, I would tend to play with the Hot Wheels trucks rather than the cars. The “Big Foot” Hot Wheels was my favorite truck of them all and guess what… it was a Ford! True story!

What are you most proud about

The thing I am most proud of about FTC, are the members. Without the members, there is no FTC. I am proud of the fact that they have chosen Ford Truck Club – The premiere Ford truck enthusiasts forum (shameless plug), as their forum. They log in everyday and are active members of the community, some of the members have even become part of the staff.

Do you have plans for the future of

Yes, my plan is for Ford Truck Club to eventually run for President of the United States and hopefully become the first forum to run this wonderful country of ours. If not, I would settle for Google buying me out for 1 billion dollars!

Honestly, there is no major plan in the works other than staying current and informative. I hate browsing through a forum that looks like it was built during the dot-com bubble of the late 90’s and it’s currently 2010. What’s worse is that they actually have active members! Obviously the forum owner doesn’t care enough about the forum to keep it current, so why be a part of something like that? Another thing I hate about these dot-com bubble forums is that they always seem to be plastered with annoying, irrelevant ads. Why show a Chevy truck ad on a Ford truck site? Hello, anybody home?

What is your favorite part about the forum?

The new layout (that is still being designed)! It’s insane and is currently my favorite part of FTC (the members will always be number 1). The layout is still being designed and then has to be coded to be a functioning site but when it’s completed, visually, FTC will be the best looking automotive forum on the net hands down. Currently I think it already is but that’s me!

We also have a new toy that I really like. It’s our very own browser toolbar! The toolbar, as one of our female members pointed out “is pimp”! The toolbar has quick links to new posts on FTC, a quick link to the forums home page and also quick links to popular social sites like YouTube and FaceBook. I think it is a step in the right direction as far as staying current and hopefully people will take notice of these extra features that FTC has to offer.

Click Here for a preview of the FTC toolbar. Feel free to download it, it’s free, just like our membership!

Do you have any other projects in the works?

I have a few more projects in the works. Unfortunately I am not at liberty to discuss such matters with you.

Just kidding! I actually just recently created a company called HausMedia(LLC) and I am also creating a few more automotive forums as well as a YouTube type of community/site for the automotive enthusiast. Unfortunately these projects cost money so I am currently looking for long term partners/investors to help me (financially) with these projects. We shall see what happens.

Posted on Monday, November 8th, 2010 in Interview.
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