There has been an intense controversy lately regarding accusations made by David Penn and Craig Petty on their Worldmagic Product Review show. Wayne Dobson has asked this be made known:
Wayne Dobson - a statement about David Penn's actions:
It is now Friday evening on the 3 rd February 2012 and I find myself writing one of the hardest notes of my life. I need to break everything down into a timeline of events, so that you, the reader can make sense of what has happened.
Last week (Tuesday 24 th January) I was contacted by David Penn regarding a review he was about to do for his Wizard Product Review that week. He informed me that Jeff Mc Bride had stolen my act and put the entire routine onto a DVD that he was marketing. I voiced my dismay and couldnt believe what I was hearing. No, it was true and they were going to expose the fact on the following days Wizard Product Review, David Penn told me.
The following day (Wednesday 25 th January), I watched in horror as David Penn and Craig Petty tore Jeff to pieces in front of their audience of thousands. Watching them made me feel extremely uncomfortable and sorry for Jeff Mc Bride. That night, one of my best friends, Russ Stevens, contacted Jeff and suggested that he and I should talk. Ive known Jeff for so many years and once we started to communicate via Skype I knew that wed be able to sort the issues out that I had (Remember I had yet to see Jeffs routine).
During the following two days (26 th -27 th January) we went back and forth as my concern was for Russ Merlin in Vegas who had purchased the rights to the routine from me. Jeff contacted Russ Merlin and all was well with him and I told Jeff he could feature his routine during his lectures at magic conventions worldwide if he liked. Throughout this period David Penn had been calling and emailing still making a song and dance about Jeffs theft of my routine.
Then on the Saturday (29th January) things changed. Throughout the entire process David Penn had insisted Jeff was a thief and I stupidly took his word for it. Hed told me the routines were the same and that Jeff hadnt even credited me. This was untrue on both counts as I was about to find out. It was that morning that Jeff emailed me the link to his footage that was on Youtube. I clicked on the link and sat in disbelief as I watched Jeffs routine, it was nothing like mine and I was shocked as to why David Penn had said it was. I called David Penn and asked him to take the Wizard Product Review down on that basis and that basis alone. It had nothing to do with the fact that the matter had been settled as portrayed by David Penn.
The following few days were spent talking to Jeff and smoothing things over and Im so happy that we are still such good friends. Jeff was understandably upset to be called a thief in public and I was angry about the way David Penn had sensationalised the facts to make an interesting piece for his show.
On Tuesday the 31 st January things moved into a whole new direction however and the day ended with a revelation that shocked me beyond words. David Penn now wanted me to make a statement on Magiccafe to let readers know what a great help David had played in the resolution of the situation. This was not true, I had Russ Stevens and Jeff Mc Bride to thank for that.
David Penn had asked me to write the message and then to send it to him for his approval. My email to David Penn even started with let me know how you would like this, editing . David Penn then chose to edit out some of what I had written, to make things sound even better than they already were for him. The revised draft was then sent back to me ready to post. At this point I said I wasnt happy with what David Penn had changed and told him that Id have to run it past my friends. David Penn was not happy and that is when things reached an all time low. He told me that he, David Penn, had recorded all our telephone conversations without my knowledge from the beginning and if necessary would use them. I couldnt believe it. At that point I felt coerced, threatened and bullied to the point that I would do and say anything David Penn told me to.
Thankfully I posted the response to my friend Russ Stevens who couldnt believe what Id written. He knew that it contradicted my actual feelings and events between Jeff and myself and asked me what had happened? Fortunately I found the courage to tell Russ what had happened and it was at that point that for me The Worm Turned. I realised that I must stand up to David Penns bullying tactics and so I revised the draft myself which Russ typed out for me (as I cant type myself). Finally the truth would be known and I didnt care what David Penn said or did to me. It gave me an overwhelming sense of freedom and relief.
I then received my last email from David Penn that night in which he expressed his disappointment to what Id posted on Magiccafe. Hed prove that he had all the facts and timelines. The point hes missing is that up until that Saturday morning, I didnt have the actual facts until I saw the performance footage of Jeffs. Any interactions Id had with David Penn meant nothing, as I was not being told the truth about the situation. It was just David Penns version, which was incorrect and sensationalist.
Last night in a thread on Magiccafe, a person, Merc Man (Barry Allen), announced he had seen and heard my emails and secretly recorded conversations. I dont know if this was true, but he certainly had someone feeding the information to him.
It makes me feel ill to imagine someone secretly recording my private telephone conversations, then spreading them around. To have it done by a fellow magician hurts even more. In all of this, I was the innocent party, but at the end of it Ive had to come here and defend myself like this and that cant be right.
I think David Penn should be ashamed and I hope that our community takes the correct action to show that this type of behaviour is unacceptable. I hope the magiccafe and its members show their displeasure in ways that will make him realise that intimidation, coercion and bullying are not acceptable in our world.