Luigi Anzivino wrote: I understand that some magicians can't abide any secret being revealed, but in this case it is not the juvenile ego-centrism of the youtube tutorial, but carefully selected techniques (revealed by and with the blessing of big names in magic, I might add) that are revealed in the context of explaining how they reveal the inner workings of our brains.
I'm not an absolutist with respect to revelation of secrets. There is a time and a place where it is appropriate, and I can see the argument that an academic discussion may
be an appropriate place. I'm not sure that this
particular academic discussion is appropriate, however. Two troubling aspects:
1. Macknik and Martinez-Conde are not magicians with track records of respect for the craft. They are neuroscientists, and their interests probably don't align with those of magicians and magic. Decisions they make about whether or not to reveal a particular secret may not be made with magic's best interests in mind, but with the academic (i.e., requirement to publish) interests of the authors foremost. Let's face, people revealing magic's secrets has been a quick and easy attention getter since Reginald Scot (see the Masked Magician, Herbert Becker, and Boing Boing's interest in the subject research).
2. Macknik and Martinez-Conde have, since this area has become their research topic, become members of the Magic Circle, the IBM, the SAM, and the Magic Castle. I believe each of these organizations has as a membership requirement an oath not to reveal magic secrets. I wonder if they joined these organizations, not because the want to become better magicians and become part of the respective fraternities, but rather to enhance their bona fides to lay people, and to get their foot in the door of the community with accelerated access to secrets and magicians. At any rate, the oaths didn't seem to mean much to them.
As far as your statement "revealed by and with the blessing of big names in magic", I'll direct you to Paul Wilson's post above:
It is my understanding that more than a few of the well-known magicians cited in this book are unhappy about their secrets being shared.
Paul is plugged-in enough that his statement raises huge red flags about the situation.
If Mac King, Johnny Thompson, Apollo Robbins, Teller or anyone else who has worked with them is dissatisfied with the experience, they likely would be classy enough to not publicly state so now. But it would be interesting to know for sure.