ANNOUNCEMENT REGARDING THE FUTURE OF THE FORUM: SUBSCRIBERS ONLY STARTING NEXT WEEK

Discuss general aspects of Genii.

Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 11:21 AM

I have come to an important decision today, after many months of deliberation.

Beginning next week, only subscribers to Genii, The Conjurors' Magazine, will be allowed to post on the Forum. Non-subscribers will continue to be able to lurk, but they will no longer be able to post.

We will continue to allow people to post under pseudonyms, however everyone's real name will have to be known to me (and held in the strictest confidence). This is so I will be able to check your name against the list of subscribers in our database.

The only way to do this is to wipe the current registration records clean. This means that all those who wish to post on the Forum, and are subscribers to Genii, will have to re-register. We are going to make this change in the coming week.

Unfortunately this also means that people who purchase Genii at magic shops won't be able to register. We have no reliable way to ensure that they purchase the magazine every month.

I do appreciate the efforts and contributions everyone has made to the Genii Forum over the past seven years, and I hope that all of you who are subscribers will remain with us as we enter this new era.

Thank you.
Richard Kaufman
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 12:02 PM

A suggestion for those accommodating those that don't subscribe. Perhaps this isn't practical, but here's my thought.

I'm going to assume Richard has a merchant credit card account. If someone wants to be a posting member, why not charge them a nominal fee to do so? (perhaps $5-$20/year) That way he'll have complete information on them via the credit card transaction and I think that would cut down on the trolls considerably.

If someone with that sort of account acted up (or shared the account which is really easy to see on most forums systems), just have some language that such behavior is cause for termination of the "posting" account.
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Postby Roger M. » 01/13/08 12:04 PM

See ya' around folks.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 12:09 PM

I'm not interested in charging a separate fee for using the Forum. I think it should be part of the package you get when you subscribe to Genii.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 12:15 PM

While I appreciate why this action might 'incentivise' non-subscribers to sign up for a subscription, those of us who do not subscribe directly, but have our local 'bricks and mortar' magic shop set aside our copies, will have a choice to make.

Being a bit of a lurker - only 60+ posts - I would miss the wealth of knowledge and experience so generously offered by more experienced magi than myself.

But the excuse to pop into Roy Walton's 'to see if this month's Genii is in' offers a different networking opportunity which I would be reluctant to pass on...
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Postby Roger M. » 01/13/08 12:18 PM

Richard, with all due respect it's difficult to see any upside to your decision.
"Subscription" forums in any discipline usually enjoy relatively slow traffic, moderate IF you're lucky.
Not to mention the expertise you lose, considering many long time magi gave up buying monthly magazines years if not decades ago.

The Genii Forum was roundly viewed by most experienced magi as the place for "serious" discussions about magic, and was visited by many who didn't have subscriptions to the magazine.

In the end, I can only presume that there's more to your decision than you are sharing here, but I can say with certainty that I really did enjoy my time here, both as an "anonymous" user with a handle for a few years, and more recently as "me".
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 12:18 PM

I've very sorry to hear this. I use my purchases of Genii and MAGIC as a way to support our local magic shop.

I haven't bought a trick in ten years, so making the trek to Seattle to purchase my magazines is my way of supporting the last brick and mortar shop we have.

See you guys on the green place, I guess.
bill
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 12:23 PM

Originally posted by Richard Kaufman:
I'm not interested in charging a separate fee for using the Forum. I think it should be part of the package you get when you subscribe to Genii.
Fair enough.

In such a niche market, differentiating one's product in this and other ways adds value for subscribers and also cuts down on the headaches caused by hit and run trolls.

Seems like a pretty good idea to me, especially since non subscribers will still get plenty of benefit as they'll still be able to lurk. Will non subscribers still be able to use the search function though?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 12:46 PM

I understand the desire to support your local magic shop by going in to buy Genii. However, your local magic shop makes less than $3 for a copy of Genii, so you're really not giving them any meaningful support.

If you really want to support your local magic shop, then you should buy books and DVDs there instead of saving a few bucks by buying them on the internet.

And if you want to continue to participate in the Forum, then it's very simple to subscribe to Genii. $53 isn't a lot of money for what you get: a 112 to 120 page magazine 12 times a year, free DVDs and tricks, and the opportunity to participate in the Genii Forum. It seems like an incredibly fair deal to me. Why anyone wouldn't want to subscribe to Genii is a mystery to me.
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Postby Joe Pecore » 01/13/08 12:58 PM

Does this affect MagicPedia at all?
Share your knowledge on the MagicPedia wiki.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:03 PM

Hello Richard.

I buy Genii Magazine every month from my local UK Magic Dealer and enjoy it very much.

I will also enjoy lurking on the forum, but I feel that you are making a mistake here. You seem to be assuming that non subscribers are only "taking" from the forum.

There could be occasions in the future where a subscriber asks a question, or requests advice, and a non subscriber knows the answer or has the relevant advice but is unable to respond!

In this way Genii subscribers lose out, which is not your objective I'm sure.

Dave
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 01:04 PM

Joe, this will have NO effect on MagicPedia. Anyone (not just Genii subscribers) will be able to read, edit, and contribute to it.
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Postby Rick Ruhl » 01/13/08 01:10 PM

I'm on Richard's side on this. Genii magazine and access to the forum only cost 6.8 cents a day based on a one year subscription. (365/53=6.8).

Running an online community is a major resource hog, and it makes sense to do it this way.

So if you all are too cheap to spend less than ten cents a day to contribute to what is considered the most professional magic community online, then you're part of a problem.

Stop wanting everything for free, just shut up and subscribe.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 01:11 PM

Hi Jonesy, I appreciate your concern, but the Forum cannot continue in its current form.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:11 PM

I can understand Richard's reasons for doing this. I don't know what they are but I can come up with a few on My own that could fit. But won't as it would only be speculation and it's none of My business anyway.

Let me say it is not an easy task to run a forum be it a magic related one or on another subject. I did it for a very short time. I thought I would have time to keep at it but unfortunatly because of work etc... I did not and it went by the way side about 6 months or so into the thing.

I think that by doing this the forum will have a better quality of material on it.


Randy Sager
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 01:13 PM

Hi Randy, can you elaborate on your statement, "I haven't subscribed to Genii in close to 20 years I don't see any reason to do so now."

Why would you say that?
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Postby Roger M. » 01/13/08 01:14 PM

Richard, you asked why "anybody wouldn't want to subscribe to Genii".

Simply put, I live in Canada and you haven't changed your subscription prices to reflect the fact that the Canadian dollar now trades higher than the American dollar.

Tens of thousands of Canadians are boycotting magazines that are still attempting to gouge Canadians based on how the dollar traded a year ago.

As a matter of fact, Wal-Mart in Canada is charging the American cover price on ALL it's magazines as a customer draw and out of respect for the change in the dollar's status........most Canadians are buying their magazines at Wal-Mart as a result of that.

I suspect that has little to do with what's going on here, but you asked, and that's one mans answer.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:21 PM

DEAR RICHARD,

Any chance that non-subscribing Genii ADVERTISERS can still retain forum membership?

Best,

Paul Gordon
non-subscribing advertiser
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 01:33 PM

Blair, that's something I hadn't even considered! I'll take a look at that this coming week and perhaps revise our Canadian prices downward.

When I go to Blackpool each year, we convert all US prices directly to Euros and Pounds and use those, so it adjusts automatically. It would get confusing if we changed the amount for foreign subscribers in the magazines every month, but it should certainly be adjusted on occasion. Thanks for bringing that to my attention.

Paul, I hadn't considered the issue of advertisers, however all contract advertisers to Genii receive a complimentary subscription, so all contract advertisers would be able to use the Forum under the new plan.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:36 PM

I respect your decision. I had fun on the board so best of luck to you.

Sincerely,

Glenn Bishop
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:38 PM

Think "luxury premium..."

It's interesting how many folks willingly pony up huge bucks for magic goods and services (e.g., the Castle Notebooks) in the name of exclusivity, but how few recognize the value of that same exclusivity in electronic form.

Not to mention the fact that such Forum subscribership opens the opportunity for exclusive *material* (as opposed to just community) - though Richard hasn't broached the topic in this thread.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:41 PM

I'm sorry Richard that was an A holeish thing for me to say and was not really My intent. But it came out that way. Again Sorry.

I may at somepoint subscribe again. Just at this moment I'm still buying at the shop.

I do want to say that Genii is better then it has been in years and I do enjoy reading it.

Again sorry for the stupid comment.

Randy

P.S. I just edited that part of My first post out. Thankfully we can do that here unlike that other place.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:41 PM

I agree in principle with Richard's ruling regarding posting but it is hard on those who buy from dealers (I am a subscriber)maybe a way round will be found.

However this is a chance to reiterate that I think that real names, not pseudonyms, should be used. There is no auction privacy matter so we should know who is expressing opinions, etc.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:43 PM

Okey-dokey. The ONLY reason I don't subscribe is that I prefer to subscribe to UK-based (and UK content based) magic mags. I really like Genii; but I can't subscribe to everything!

Anyway, if I lose out....

It's been GREAT fun here and I've enjoyed myself. All the best to all the friends I've made via this forum since I joined about 3/4 years ago.

God bless,

Paul Gordon
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 01:44 PM

Hi Randy, I had no problem with your comment, but I wanted to know why you said it. I realize some people use the purchase of a magazine (an inexpensive item) to motivate them to visit the local magic shop. But surely the trip is just as easily motivated by the purchase of a book or DVD or trick?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 01:48 PM

I've just had an idea. It's probably not feasible for obvious reasons, but it might be possible, if you buy Genii from your local magic shop every month, to have your dealer send me a list of the people (along with e-mail addresses) who make the monthly purchase.
The only problem here is with people asking dealers to include them on the list when they're not really buying Genii, but just because they're friends or good customers.
Anyone see a way to make this work?
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 01:52 PM

Richard


Well I still had that painfull twinge of realizing what I said so that's why I changed it and appologized for it.

Yes for the most part it is in addition to buying otherthings at Denny's shop in Vegas. Or I buy it from the shop I work at.

I hate wating for the mail and that's the main reason I don't subscribe to Genii or Magic. I can get them much quicker buying them in a magic shop then I can by waiting for the mail. I'm impatient at times. As I said I may subscribe again at somepoint so don't give up on me just yet.

Randy
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:02 PM

That's a good idea Richard.

Now this would be a pain but if you needed evidence of at least the first purchase maybe have the buyer of the genii send you the reciept then you could send a pass word to the person. That would be alot of time spent on doing that however so I don't think My idea is the answer.

Randy
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:09 PM

Originally posted by Richard Kaufman:

Anyone see a way to make this work?
Sounds like a lot more trouble than it's likely to be worth. What if someone just buys 3-4 issues a year? Would that be enough to trigger the "Genii Forums bonus"? Sounds like something that would be a nightmare to track while simultaneously being easy to defraud.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:13 PM

I agree with Chris.


I think it's a nice idea Richard has for us store buying forum members but I think it would be a huge pain in the rear end to actually put to work.

Maybe it could work but I think it would really be much more trouble then it's worth.

Just go with your plan Richard. Those of us out here will come around at somepoint.

Randy
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:16 PM

Well, it's been fun you fellows.

Regards,

Ricky Jay.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:21 PM

Richard
My local magic shop of choice, (The Browsers Den of Magic in Toronto) has envelopes put aside for customers who have requested their magazines put aside for them every month.
Would, perhaps, a list from the owner of the people who have Genii put aside for them every month fit the bill?

Gord
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:23 PM

Shame you have come to this decision Richard.
Assume your advertisers are happy with this decision?

Ah well, off to learn some great card magic on Conjure Nation and T.s.d

Best

jc
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 02:23 PM

Hi Gord, yes, that's the kind of thing I have in mind.

Joe Pike = Ricky Jay? I don't think so. Besides, Ricky has a subscription to Genii. :)
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 02:29 PM

J Carey ... what advertisers? The only person who advertises on the banners here is me and my associate editor Jim Steinmeyer.

I've never wanted the Genii Forum to be the kind of advertising-laden experience that so many websites, including the Magic Cafe, have become. I hate seeing banners all over the place, including in the middle of threads! Makes me crazy.

No advertisers will be unhappy over this decision because there are none here.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:30 PM

Here I go again (Sorry Bill Malone and L&L Publishing)

I think Richard should just go with his plans and with time those of us that are buying from magic shops will come around to the idea if we want to post often on the Genii forum.

It's not that much for a years subscription as was said earlier.

yes I'm already rethinking My impatients at this time. I don't post that often on here (Except for today! LOL!) but I do at times and I know that if I can't I will wish I could post from time to time.

We should let Richard do this and if you find that you miss posting on here send in a subscription to him.

Randy
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:38 PM

A question for Richard.

Back in the day (from the the Bull Section in the Collected Almanac) you mentioned something to the effect that periodicals live and die based on subscriptions rather than retail sales. Would you say that's still true today with Genii?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/13/08 02:42 PM

It's absolutely true. We make no money on magazines sold by dealers. The price they pay is pretty much our cost.
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Postby Guest » 01/13/08 02:46 PM

Richard.

Sad to think this will be the last post you will accept from me.

Please allow me to record my disappointment at your decision. I use the forum every day, and owing to personal circumstances, cancelled my subscriptions to Genii and M#@*C magazines last year.

I cannot bring myself to use the Magic Cafe, so I fear I am now floating around cyberspace, with no magical forum with which to seek advice, trade or furnish friendships.

What a sad day.

But thanks for having me these past years.

I wish you all a successful and happy 2008.

Peace,

Darren. :confused:
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Postby Pete Biro » 01/13/08 02:49 PM

How about a secret coded password printed in the magazine? Only good one time? :genii:
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