Cutting one card higher

Discuss your favorite close-up tricks and methods.

Postby Guest » 01/22/03 06:50 PM

Speaking of effects Ricky Jay did in his show, there was one where he would repeatedly cut one card higher than the card to which the spectator cut. I have been able to achieve this effect using a "Devil's Deck" that has markings along one side, which I keep facing away from the spectator. But perhaps there is a better way, whether used in Ricky's show or not. Any thoughts?

Thanks!

HB
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Postby Guest » 01/22/03 09:18 PM

Henry,

I mean this in the most sincere and respectful way imaginable:

We should find effects to perform in books, lectures, magic shops, magazines and by talking to other magicians and developing our own effects.

We should never, NEVER! take the effects from other magicians. Not little guys at the club, and not big guys with their own tv specials. It is not done.

Stop doing an effect you only thought about because you saw it or heard about it in the act of a working professional like Ricky Jay, or from anyone else.

Magic is an Art that allows you to express yourself.

It is an avenue to create wonder, tell stories, open people's imaginations, make them laugh (and with someone as poetic as Rene Lavand sometimes cry.)

There are a million effects to practice and perform. There are an unlimited amount of undiscovered effects waiting in your imagination.

The world has a Ricky Jay. We'd love to see who you are.
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Postby Guest » 01/23/03 06:56 PM

New Guy --

You're entitled to your view, of course, but I disagree with you entirely. It is common for magicians to borrow ideas from each other for their effects. Ricky Jay himself performed McDonald's Aces in his act using patter from Erdnase. He also performed other effects that obviously were not his inventions, as well as some that were. Whit Haydn's manuscript on the Chicago Surprise has some additional notes on the excessive fixation on originality that plagues many magicians. I commend it to everyone.

I do not see any big distinction between being inspired to perform an effect by reading it in a book or by seeing it in another magician's act. I do not use his patter; nobody would mistake my routine for his. I just use the concept, the general plot. And to be frank, it turns out that the concept -- the cutting-one-card-higher plot -- predates Jay as well. I didn't happen to find it in a book or magic store, but I could have. I do not see the big deal. It's like seeing a magician do a red-and-black separation trick and then going off to devise a method for achieving a similar plot but doing something different with it. Happens all the time.

To reiterate the key point: Obviously one should not perform in a manner that is a verbatim copy of someone else; one should take effects and make them one's own, as Ricky Jay did with those effects I mentioned above -- and as I have done with my routine where I cut one card higher than the spectator. All I was lookng for in my posting were thoughts on methods for achieving the effect other than the one I mentioned. If you have any to offer, great.

Best,

Henry
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Postby Guest » 01/23/03 10:33 PM

"It is common for magicians to borrow ideas from each other for their effects."

Yes, if they are face-to-face teaching/sharing/sessioning. The kind of "borrowing" you suggest is actually called "stealing." Feel free to use my word in place of yours.

Note that in your case we are not talking about "borrowing ideas for effects," we are talking about you borrowing effects for your effects. You're not stealing money to buy bread, you're stealing bread.

"Whit Haydn's manuscript on the Chicago Surprise has some additional notes on the excessive fixation on originality that plagues many magicians."

I read it when it came out and just re-read it on your recommendation.

What Whit wrote is that if you can't invent someting better than one of the classics (Ambitious Card, Cups and Balls, Chicago Opener) don't worry about it. Learning to do the classics well and in your own way is more than enough. The late Michael Skinner is a perfect example.

Whit did not in any way suggest that theft was a viable alternative to creativity.

"Ricky Jay himself performed McDonald's Aces in his act using patter from Erdnase."

McDonald's Aces? Sort-of, but this is a commercially available effect originally sold by One-Armed McDonald himself. So it is not the same argument. When the originator starts selling the "One Higher Deck" you can stock-up.

Patter from Erdnase? Really? Are you referring to "The Exclusive Coterie?" I hear this parroted all the time. I checked.

I watched several different broadcasts of him performing his version while I tried to follow along, looking at the verbatim patter in Erdnase. I'll make you a deal, I'll give you a dollar for every word that is the same in the patter, offset by any words in the patter that are not identical. Deal?

Here's the tough part - Erdnase is published material.

It is O.K. perform published material you have purchased and have the rights to perform, or vary. See the difference? I'm sure you refuse to.

"I do not see any big distinction between being inspired to perform an effect by reading it in a book or by seeing it in another magician's act."

If you are "inspired" by reading Harry Potter, is the result that you go out and re-write the book using your own writing abilities?

Here is the big distinction you do not see- if you read it in a book, the author put it there for you to read and use and do whatever the law permits. If you see it in another performer's act- it was put there to inspire wonder, to entertain, to show you something special. It was not put there to promote duplication.

"I do not use his patter; nobody would mistake my routine for his. I just use the concept, the general plot."

Good for you not using his patter, but why the distinction all of the sudden? If the effect and the presentation are essentially the same thing, then taking the effect is taking the presentation-(I can cut higher than you can- this is "tell and show magic.")

This is in contrast to more "story telling" or presentational magic (these three balls represent the Holy Trinity...)

In this case taking the effect is taking everything.

To me, the distinction is "What lit the light bulb in your head?"

If it was a radio story about run-away geese, or a great joke you turned into an effect (Bill Malone)- great.

If the bulb was lit by reading a book (magic, fiction or non-fiction)-great.

But having the bulb lit by seeing or hearing about another performer is not inspiration, that's plagiarism.

Do you understand that "cutting one higher" is a good plot, and an appealing plot, but not a general plot?

Red and Black separation = general plot.

Ambitious Card has become a general plot, and if enough guys like you steal the cutting plot, 50 years from now it can be a general plot too.

Finding it in a book after seeing a performance isn't research, it's rationalization.

"To reiterate the key point: Obviously one should not perform in a manner that is a verbatim copy of someone else; one should take effects and make them one's own..."

So to make your "key point" a little more concise, you admit to being a thief, you are just a thief who has limits.

"All I was looking for in my posting were thoughts on methods for achieving the effect other than the one I mentioned. If you have any to offer, great."

This is the best part of all...

Your originality comes from the acts of other magicians, and your methods will come from other magician's answers to your questions on a bulletin board. You are a Renaissance man.
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Postby Guest » 01/24/03 06:04 AM

New Guy, your post puts me into a difficult position. I realize your arguments seem very strong to you. To me, they don't seem very impressive. I could enumerate the reasons why, some of which would be elaborations of what I said already. I'm just not sure how fruitful it would be. I don't mean to seem disrespectful, as I can see that you have put a lot of time into writing about this.

At the same time, to be frank, there is (to my ears) a certain pomposity to your writing and argumentative style. Perhaps others love it, but to me it's a turn-off. This, too, causes me to doubt that either of us is likely to benefit much from this exchange. So unless there's clear interest from the rest of the list in seeing this dialogue pursued, I think we had best agree to disagree on most of the points you raise. Again, though, thanks for taking the time to write.

If anyone else has comments on the substantive question, I'll look forward to hearing them.

Best,

Henry
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Postby Guest » 01/24/03 07:37 AM

To not-so-casually drift back to the topic at hand, I don't have a method of cutting but there is a patter line that would be great here.

It's from W.C. Fields, in My Little Chickadee.

Fields is in a western saloon, sitting at a table with a stranger. He takes a deck of cards and proposes a wager, the winner being the one who cuts to the higher card.

"Is this a game of chance?" asks the stanger.

"Not the way I play it," replies Fields.

(Well, I liked it!)<G>

cheers,
Peter Marucci
showtimecol@aol.com
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Postby Jon Racherbaumer » 01/24/03 08:10 AM

To New Guy and Henry:

This Forum is rarely formal and there is no way NOT for a topic to drift or become overloaded with sidebar issues. What began with a question about a specific effect, drifted into an IMPORTANT debate, which both of you began and then one of you (Henry) politely withdrew. At least matters remained civil. What disappoints me is a general reluctance to really get down to "brass tacks;" to truly sustain a discourse or debate--not just strong assertions and claims, but to include warrants and proofs (if possible).

Henry writes: "At the same time, to be frank, there is (to my ears) a certain pomposity to your writing and argumentative style. Perhaps others love it, but to me it's a turn-off."

Well, I suppose that blunt, declarative sentences SEEM confrontational and off-putting; however, I would not consider them ostentatiously self-important or arrogantly lofty. Arguments should have clarity and muscle. THey are, after all, argumentative. As long as they are not tinctured with personal invective or top-heavy with UNSUPPORTED value-judgements, I prefer that the argumentation (about important subjects) to be more detailed, forceful, and willing to examine layers of meaning. By walking away from such argumentation suggests that the participant ALREADY HAS MADE UP HIS MIND. THe topic at hand is then "closed" and one can only say, "Let us agree that we disagree."

Henry adds: "This, too, causes me to doubt that either of us is likely to benefit much from this exchange. So unless there's clear interest from the rest of the list in seeing this dialogue pursued, I think we had best agree to disagree on most of the points you raise. Again, though, thanks for taking the time to write."

Nicely and delicately put, Henry. (I mean that.)Thank you for that...However, I think that there COULD BE enormous benefits from such exchanges. Sometimes the dialogue can be conducted on an individual basis with no lurkers looking on. If the results are fruitful, then they could be shared with the rest of us...

Just a thought.
Thanks for sharing...
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Postby Jeff Eline » 01/24/03 08:52 AM

I'm sorry, but I don't see the problem. Mr. Baskerville was simply inquiring about an effect that Ricky Jay does in his show, a show that is filled with other creators effects (McDonalds aces, gambling demonstations, fast n' loose, Fusilade, Melini's card in glass, flea circus, Orange Tree illusion, etc...)

Would I be just as out of line to ask, "Wow that Fast n' loose was really great - where can I learn more about that?"

If a perfomer does an effect in public (TV or Stage or whatever) are we not allowed to inquire about its origins, its history?

When Guy Hollingworth did his torn and restored card (his own method), are we to abondon all restored effects?? Is it not fair that we investigate this effect if we are intersted? That's why we are in magic, 'cause this stuff facinates us. I'm not saying we are entitled to his method if he wanted to keep it secret.

And I hardly think that "Cutting One Card Higher" is such a novel card effect that it is proprietary to Mr. Jay - but maybe it is.

Jeff

PS - Also, Mr Jay's performace of the Exclusive Coterie is verbatim from a text. Denny Haney showed it to me when 52 assistance was running on Broadway. When he gets back in town, I will ask him for the reference.
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Postby Guest » 01/24/03 09:04 AM

To Jeff-

"I'm sorry, but I don't see the problem."

Good! Now simply think about the possibility that there is a problem. What are the distinctions? What good could be derived from adopting an alternative view.

Don't change the way you see things, just consider the outcome of other approaches.

"Mr. Baskerville was simply inquiring about an effect that Ricky Jay does in his show"

No, he was inquiring as to alternative methods to perform an effect he "discovered" in the show of another performer.

"Would I be just as out of line to ask, "Wow that Fast n' loose was really great - where can I learn more about that?""

Not at all! But note that he did not ask "Wow, where can I learn more about Cutting One Higher? Is this original with Ricky or is it some hidden classic I just missed?"

"If a perfomer does an effect in public (TV or Stage or whatever) are we not allowed to inquire about its origins, its history?"

Of course, I agree with you completely. We ask about the things that excite and interest us. This is different from going to work on "our methods" for the effect before we ask "Where did it come from, is it original?"

"That's why we are in magic, 'cause this stuff facinates us. I'm not saying we are entitled to his method if he wanted to keep it secret."

We agree on both of these points!

"Also, Mr Jay's performace of the Exclusive Coterie is verbatim from a text. Denny Haney showed it to me when 52 assistance was running on Broadway."

This is what I meant by "parroting," - you repeat it because you heard someone else say it, not because you know it yourself.

Please read Erdnase for yourself before you "proclaim" what it does or does not say.

Yes, the basic effect and floral language Mr. Jay uses is from of Erdnase (in addition to a lot more language not in Erdnase.) It is is not "verbatim."

Please, please, please look-up the precise Erdnase text and the definition of the word verbatim. I think you'll reconsider an often repeated and rarely researched argument.

To Henry,

"New Guy, your post puts me into a difficult position."

No, Henry, your own actions and point of view put you into a difficult position.

"I realize your arguments seem very strong to you. To me, they don't seem very impressive."

I understand. My goal was not to impress you, it was to support a point of view with verifiable facts.

"I don't mean to seem disrespectful,"

You have been very respectful to everyone except Ricky Jay and the Art of Magic. I take no offense to, and welcome other points of view. That's what makes this a discussion, this is how we learn and grow.

"there is (to my ears) a certain pomposity to your writing and argumentative style."

This was not intended. Next time I'll use smaller words and weaker examples.

"This, too, causes me to doubt that either of us is likely to benefit much from this exchange."

I have learned some things about you from your position, I am sorry you found nothing worthy of consideration in the open exchange of differing opinions.

"I think we had best agree to disagree on most of the points you raise."

Done. This is truly not a character attack on you, it is just a way of clarifying a small part of what each of us defines as our own Character, ethics and respect for other performers and the Art.

You disagree with "most" of the points I raise? It is a shame we get to hear the whole argument at full volume, but no emphasis is placed on finding small areas of mutual agreement.

Yes, we agree to disagree.

I wish you all the best and sincerely hope that you will continue to consider other views of the big picture.

To Jon,

Thank you for articulating that a solid discussion is best composed of heartfelt opinions and well-supported, verifiable facts. Roc-on!
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Postby Guest » 01/24/03 01:21 PM

I said I was inclined to drop this debate unless there was interest on this list in seeing it continued. I did not expect such interest to turn up, but I can scarcely resist encouragement from Jon Racherbaumer, whose work I have so admired and enjoyed over the years. He wishes for sustained discourse and debate. I will go ahead try to oblige him. Apologies in advance about the length of this post, which I realize will cause many readers to move on.

First, let me clear some underbrush:

1. My use of the word pomposity to characterize New Guys approach admittedly was a little imprecise, but the more accurate words also would have been more pejorative, and I was trying to avoid personalizing the debate. Ill have a little more to say about this at the end.

2. Ricky Jays presentation of his four-ace assembly obviously is borrowed in significant part from Erdnase. Yes, I have both Erdnase and Jays routine; no, Im not terribly interested in comparing the number of words they share with the number of words they dont share. Clearly Ricky made the effect his own, as I said earlier, by changing Erdnases wording in important ways. Its equally clear that he borrowed from Erdnase conceptually and in many particulars, as New Guy admits. Thus I said that Jay used patter from Erdnase; and he did. I dont see any point in arguing further about it, not least because everyone seems to agree that it wouldnt much matter if he *had* borrowed it entirely. It was in a published book, and New Guys position appears to be that books are fair game. I still think its a worthwhile example to consider as an illustration of how magicians borrow from each other, but the payoff of settling the precise extent of the borrowing in this one case is far too meager to justify the effort.

Now lets get to the core issues.

3. New Guys form of argument is long on declaration and short on analysis of the rather loaded concepts he tosses around. What we know from his writings so far is that its okay to find ideas for effects in books, lectures, magic shops, magazines and by talking to other magicians and developing our own effects. But to use an idea obtained simply by watching another magicians performance is theft. Evidently it continues to be theft even if it turns out that the idea was also available in a book; pointing to its availability in published form after the fact is rationalization. If the light bulb in my head was lit by watching someone else, then the result when that light bulb leads me to my own version of the same general effect is plagiarism.

Lets think a little more about intellectual property and the theft of it. New Guy asks: If you are inspired by reading Harry Potter, is the result that you go out and re-write the book using your own writing abilities? I think thats a helpful example. If I read a Harry Potter book, I believe I am within my rights not only legally but ethically to go write my own book about a child who enters magical worlds, acquires magical powers, and so forth. I am not at liberty to name the kid Harry Potter. I am not at liberty to steal the precise story. But I am at liberty to use the theme. One reason this is a good example is that the process just described is what J.K. Rowling did: the Harry Potter books owe a great deal to prior childrens literature using similar general plotting devices. The important question is whether Rowling added enough of her own to make it something new with fresh value. She did.

The basic distinction at issue here is drawn by copyright law, which allows protection not of ideas but of ways of expressing them. This leads to litigation over nice questions about whether a variant of a published book is really the same thing or actually something new. I do not want to take this discussion in a legalistic direction, both because its obvious that there is no legal problem with any of the magicians behaviors New Guy complains about and because New Guy isnt making a legal claim anyway. Im just flagging the point about copyright law because I think it reflects some sound ethical intuitions about where to draw the line between protecting an artists creation and allowing others to be inspired by it to offer their own variations. If the second performer is adding new creative value, and not just appropriating the very thing done by the first performer for his own benefit, he is not stealing not in law, and not (in my view) in ethics. I think this norm is a healthy one for the growth of the art of magic. Most great effects are inspired in the first instance by the work of others. Then they evolve into something increasingly different; eventually something really new is born.

4. But now comes another move in New Guys argument: if you read it in a book, the author put it there for you to read and use and do whatever the law permits. If you see it in another performer's act- it was put there to inspire wonder, to entertain, to show you something special. It was not put there to promote duplication. This is the crux of his claim. Notice that the framework I laid out in the previous paragraph doesnt depend on where the first idea came from a book, a performance, or wherever else. It depends instead on whether the second performer is adding new value. New Guys framework, however, does depend very heavily on whether the inspiration came from a book or performance.

I think he places too much weight on this distinction, which he does not defend; he does not explain where he finds the rules he describes. Conclusory accusations of theft will not do. I pay for books, which contain effects and also the methods for achieving them. There is a presumed invitation to the reader to use those methods to perform the effects. I also pay to watch performances, which contain effects without explanations of their methods. I believe that most performances contain implied invitations to their viewers to be inspired by what they see and to feel free to go create their own variations. Not an invitation to appropriate the identical routine; but an invitation to build on the basic effect and create a new routine from it.

That certainly is my understanding when I offer a performance that includes original material of my own. It may not be every performers understanding; it may not be Ricky Jays understanding. But I dont think it is workable to have peoples rights dictated by the private understandings of the performer, which may be idiosyncratic. The question is what the *best* understanding is the understanding best for the growth of the art of magic. I believe a fairly generous understanding is best for that purpose. True, we dont want magicians to be discouraged from creating routines by the knowledge that others will grab them as soon as the routines are shown in public and will imitate them, thereby taking the whole value of the performers creation. But we do (in my opinion) want a fertile creative community where people can borrow general ideas and do new things with them. Yes, that means a performer may see an effect idea of his own taken and turned to new applications by others with no compensation beyond whatever was paid for his performance. On the other hand, he also benefits in kind by being able to do the same thing when he is building his own effects. This is the tradeoff one always finds when creative work is said to be in the public domain.

5. Turning to this particular case, I believe that the idea of cutting to a card higher than the spectator is an example of such a general idea. Ricky Jay built a routine around that idea. I built a different routine around it. I see nothing to be gained for anyone by saying that the very idea of cutting to the high card somehow belongs to Ricky Jay now and mustnt be used by anyone else, even in a routine structured differently. This is especially true since, as I have said, the idea of such a routine had already been developed and sold before (a post in another forum called it the Tomorrow Deck). This isnt rationalization. Its just to point out that you cannot steal an idea from someone if it wasnt theirs in the relevant sense the sense of being exclusive in some way that gives them a right to it. If I had been inspired by Ricky Jays ace assembly to do my own, that wouldnt be theft, either. The first reason is that such borrowing is fair game for the reasons I have argued here; the second reason is that, whether I knew it or not, the idea of assembling aces as he did is out there to be found in countless places. Its silly to howl that someone is a thief in such circumstances.

But the key question is a matter of degree: whether devising a new routine that involves cutting to the high card amounts to duplicating the precise thing Ricky Jay did or whether its just a case of borrowing a general plot and doing something new with it. I think its in the latter category. New Guy disagrees in his characteristic style: Do you understand that "cutting one higher" is a good plot, and an appealing plot, but not a general plot? Red and Black separation = general plot. Ambitious Card has become a general plot, and if enough guys like you steal the cutting plot, 50 years from now it can be a general plot too. Actually, no, I dont suppose I do understand the distinction between a general plot and a good plot; so far as I am aware it is New Guys creation. But in any event he appears to believe that the Ambitious Card has become a staple of many performers repertoires over the years in part by theft (apologies in advance if I'm misreading him), and that this is an unfortunate pattern that should not be repeated. Again his example that is useful, though it cuts against his position. If it were theft to see someone else perform the ambitious card and then be inspired to go work out methods for the effect, I suspect that the magic communitys knowledge of the effect would be diminished from its impressive current state.

6. In conclusion, the real point of difference between me and New Guy involves what norms about fair borrowing best serve the magic community: whether a practice of being inspired by a performance to work up a new routine built around an effect seen there will help or hurt the growth of magic. My views are clear, but I am willing to allow for a range of opinion on that subject; I think reasonable people can differ about it. There is no place to turn for objective, final settlement of the issue. An implication of this, though, is that it is rash and discourteous to label a thief anyone who takes a different view from ones own. I do not think this sort of name-calling serves the magic community particularly well.

Best,

Henry
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Postby Bill Mullins » 01/24/03 01:49 PM

Henry is a relatively new member and has been jumped on pretty hard in his first discussion -- somewhat unfairly, I think. I hope his experience in this topic doesn't color his opinion of the whole Genii community.

Why unfairly? It isn't right to attack someone as a thief because they are interested in a method for a trick. Henry clearly understands that magic is best served when a magician makes the routines and tricks he performs his own. Let's give him the benefit of the doubt that this is what he will do with the trick at hand -- even though his question is inspired by a Ricky Jay routine (and a routine that Ricky has clearly made his own).

I'm all for a healthy, informed, _reasonable_ set of ethical standards for magic to adhere to. But I see a tendency on some occasions for internet magicians to be "ethicaler than thou".

Performing another's magic is an ethical transgression. Henry hasn't done that, nor has he said anything that shows an intention to do that. Asking a question about methods isn't a transgression. Cut him some slack.

As an aside, I find myself somewhat more sympathetic to Henry than New Guy for the simple reason that Henry is willing to post behind a name rather than an anonymous handle. New Guy is willing to throw stones, not from a glass house but from a hidden one.
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Postby Jeff Eline » 01/24/03 02:07 PM

Bravo Mr. Baskerville. Well done!
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Postby Jon Racherbaumer » 01/24/03 03:09 PM

I'm delighted to see the robustness of the commentary on this question, which then gives us much to mull over, meditate upon, and form all kinds of amorphous opinions that may grow and develop into fascinating arguments.

I once heard a lengthy discourse that brought into play an analogy from music; that musical compositions (including arrangements)and musical performance (interpretation of the music) could be equated with magical compositions and performative interpretations of these compositions?

However...

The wicket gets sticky when performance moves out of the private sector and into the public one. As hobbyists we expropriate like madmen, acquiring, assimulating, and "borrowing" everything in sight--from the tricks we buy to the books and videos we borrow. The flimsy assumption is that if a trick, idea, sleight, or routine has been "tipped," it is fair game. If one can master the said expropriation, one feels that he has a right to do anything with it and in ANY SITUATION, VENUE, or domain.

When a magician works professionally, he strives mightly to distinguish himself from the "common herd" and he does this, in part, by creating whole "performance pieces" that are infused with his "signature."

For instance, the story trick that has been around for decades ("King of Diamonds," Sam the Bellhop") has been used by many bar magicians in the past, most notably by Frank Everhart when he worked the old Ivanhoe. It was, while he worked there, a signature trick for him.

When other Chicago bar magicians retired or stopped doing it, Bill Malone developed his own idiosyncratic way of presenting it...with his own style, momentum, false shuffles (thrown in) and eventually became strongly associated with it...doing it on television and trade shows. He also explained it on a video. But it, little by little, became his "signature" trick.

I haven't seen too many hobbyists-magicians doing it, but nervertheless, it's "out there."

In my old-school book, it's wrong for an aspiring or established professional to begin performing another performer's "signature" stuff or to use Bill's stylized performance of "Sam the Bellhop" at corporate events or on television.

Ricky Jay has also developed all kinds of material and this stuff is strongly associated with him. To start performing tricks from his shows is wrong.

Don Alan developed his bowl routine from Roy Benson's; however, all the bits and combinatorial stuff, including the BIG NUT climax was Don's addition...his "signature piece." Granted: he gave Magic Inc. permission to sell this routine, but he thought it would be sold to amateurs and semi-professionals. What rankled him was when others PUBLICLY used his signature climax with the big nut, an aspect that conspicuously distinguished Don from other close-up performers.

This debate is an old one and has yet to be settled. One of the things this Forum can do is to revive these issues and topics and to INTELLIGENTLY and PASSIONATELY air our views, pro and con. This is how we can remain sensitive to our brethren and perhaps learn to appreciate, if not honor, other points of view.

I hope so...

Onward...
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Postby Guest » 01/24/03 03:17 PM

Jon Racherbaumer writes: "Ricky Jay has also developed all kinds of material and this stuff is strongly associated with him. To start performing tricks from his shows is wrong."

I take it we all would agree with this. The question is whether I am doing what Jon describes anytime I perform a routine where I repeatedly cut to a card higher than the spectator's -- even if the routine as a whole is very different from Jay's. I think not, for reasons explained in my earlier long post. I do not know what Jon's position is, but would be interested in hearing it.

Henry
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Postby pduffie » 01/24/03 03:18 PM

Hi Henry

You said:

"But the key question is a matter of degree: whether devising a new routine that involves cutting to the high card amounts to duplicating the precise thing Ricky Jay did or whether its just a case of borrowing a general plot and doing something new with it."

The problem here is: you don't know the method Ricky Jay used. So how can you tell if you have created a new approach?

BTW - High Card Cut is an old plot. See Tom Sellers (1933) trick here:

http://www.peterduffie.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/tom4.htm

Best Wishes

Peter
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Postby Pete McCabe » 01/24/03 03:59 PM

It seems to me that if you are going to accuse someone of stealing, you better have a damn strong foundation to build your case on.

I'm still waiting to see that case here. Personally I would very much prefer to see this incredibly serious accusation withdrawn or at least backed up by something much stronger than the very weak arguments offered by "New Guy", whoever he is.

Actually, what I'd really like is for anyone who is accusing someone of stealing to use their real name when doing so. This anonymous making of extremely serious accusations seems extremely cowardly to me.

But on the subject at hand, the question is when does "inspiration" become "stealing"? For you to be stealing from Ricky Jay, you have to be reducing the value of something which is rightfully his.

So the first question is, will Mr. Baskerville's routine reduce the value of Ricky Jay's? The second question is, how much of that value rightfully belongs to Ricky Jay?

Certainly, Ricky's "exclusive coterie" presentation of the Ace Assembly is very distinctive and associated with him, at least in the magic world of today. If other performers were to duplicate that it would reduce this distinctiveness, which is a significant part of the routine's value.

How much of that value rightfully belongs to Ricky Jay is another question. Obviously the routine is derived from the presentation in Erdnase. But Ricky did the work of finding it, editing it, and resurrecting it. In my judgement, this routine is distinctive enough that I would not perform it or anything similar out of respect to Ricky.

But the Ace (or in Ricky's case, queen) assembly plot is obviously free for anyone to use. I doubt even New Guy would say that no one should perform this plot based on Ricky's "ownership" of it.

However it does seem that New Guy would object if a performer saw Ricky do his assembly and was inspired to come up with his own take on the assembly. If so I find this hard to defend.

Perhaps the problem is that the cut one higher plot does not seem to lend itself to a variety of different presentations, unlike the Ace Assembly. Perhaps this is what New Guy means when he says that cutting one higher is not a general plot.

However, if you were to come up with a new presentation for this old effect, then it seems that you would be doing exactly what Ricky Jay did when he created his version of the exclusive coterie presentation.

By the way, with regard to the issue Peter Duffie raises, I would assume that Henry is talking about a new presentation and not simply a new method for the same presentation. As far as I am concerned, the value of this routine to Ricky Jay is based entirely on the presentation. His audience doesn't know what method he's using either. Certainly, recreating Ricky's presentation with a different method would be extremely poor form.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 01/24/03 04:14 PM

Originally posted by Henry Baskerville:
Speaking of effects Ricky Jay did in his show, there was one where he would repeatedly cut one card higher than the card to which the spectator cut.
Hi folks...

Where did the effect of 'out cutting the spectator' start?

Has Ricky Jay brought back an oldie or started something new?
Mundus vult decipi
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Postby Guest » 01/24/03 04:57 PM

Now, I am not too familiar with the particular reutine in question, but cutting above the spectator is hardly, in my oppinion an original plot. It's about as original as cheating at poker, because that is exactly what it is. Well, you need to replace "poker" with "high-cut," but it is cheating at a card game. There is, in fact, a card game where you must cut higher than the opponent. Now, if you could show the deck, force a medium card, and then say that you take back the bet because (showing the deck) "It is clear that you have cheated." (Showing that the card the spectator picked was the highest card in the deck.) That would be copying a trick. Humm...I think I'm taking this trick, cause I think I have a way to do it. Ach! I can't. I got the idea from Jay, so I guess it's his.

Where do you draw the line? Take coin magic, if David Roth does a coins to cups reutine, can I? Sure, his uses a friction palm and a Han Ping Chien move. Mine uses the bottom steal from Bobo, my own unique slight, and a retention vanish. If you get into this grey area, you need to find a border. Let me tell ya something, even though my presentation and Roth's use completely different moves, no layperson will look at hand-semantics. On the other hand, if its inspiration, then the effect I first described is Jay's, not mine. And, at that point, the "Charming Cheat" is out of buisness.

Where is the line? Taking the analogy to music, can I use a second if Bethoven did? What about the opening from Auf Sprach Zarathustra (Thus Spake Zarathustra, 2001: A space Odessy)? It's clearly inspired by the opening to Bethoven's 5th.

Now, let's get into the real morality. In my mind, the real morality in magic comes tot he same thing that everything else in magic does. What does the audience see? If they see it as different, then it is, no matter how similar it is or who inspired it. If they see it as the same, it is, no matter how different it is or who didn't inspire it. I could copy someone elses effect completely, and, as morally reprehensible as it may seem, as long as people don't connect the two effects, it's fine. That where my line is.

If it does another magician harm, it's a "very bad thing." If it doesn't, it's fine.

We are supposed to be a brotherhood (and sisterhood) here. We are the select holders of some secret knowledge. Be constructive. If you must quash an idea, put another in its place.
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Postby Guest » 01/24/03 05:04 PM

Henry,

"Notice that the framework I laid out in the previous paragraph doesnt depend on where the first idea came from a book, a performance, or wherever else. It depends instead on whether the second performer is adding new value. New Guys framework, however, does depend very heavily on whether the inspiration came from a book or performance. "

Let me be clear on this point. My view automatically presumes a performer will "add new value" by his or her performance, otherwise why bother. This is not the crux of our divergent opinions.

I believe you understand my framework. You do not seem to understand the logical conclusion of the difference in our frameworks.

I am not talking about "Law" of any kind. If your actions broke the law (copyright, trademark, etc.) then the Courts could sort things out for the parties.

I am, and have been talking about the "more beneficial" behaviors in our community, a community I believe is very important.

Yes this is all opinion and point of view. I am tired of watching television shows, convention shows, contests and video tapes full of the same effects, over and over. This is not growth, it is death by repetition. Let me say that again- (just kidding.) Simply consider your own experience.

Why is Lennart Green so amazing? Because he is so different, so "Lennart."

Would you want a convention schedule full of exclusively Green-Derivative material?

This is why the killer act on any magic convention show is always the variety act - it is different. The good news is that the magic act always kills at the juggling conventions too.

"I believe that most performances contain implied invitations to their viewers to be inspired by what they see and to feel free to go create their own variations. Not an invitation to appropriate the identical routine; but an invitation to build on the basic effect and create a new routine from it."

I completely disagree on this point. Most magicians see something they like and go home and "tinker" with it, try to solve and understand the "how" of the method, to grow from playing with the material they see from other performers. Everyone does this, this is good.

The problem arises when the "tinkering" with these effects leaves your home and sets-up a new residence in your act.

"The question is what the *best* understanding is the understanding best for the growth of the art of magic. I believe a fairly generous understanding is best for that purpose."

Go here for a look at the actual outcome when magicians share your view and approach. I wish it could be some other way.

Your way won't promote growth and sharing, it will foster more of the really interesting folks moving farther away from the mainstream.

"But the key question is a matter of degree: whether devising a new routine that involves cutting to the high card amounts to duplicating the precise thing Ricky Jay did or whether its just a case of borrowing a general plot and doing something new with it."

You misunderstood me. I do believe Ambitious Card is a General Plot. Not due to theft, but because it has been in print and in the acts and lectures of thousands of magicians for decades.

"(apologies in advance if I'm misreading him), "

Apologies accepted. Sorry if I was unclear or confusing.

"Actually, no, I dont suppose I do understand the distinction between a general plot and a good plot; so far as I am aware it is New Guys creation."

Here is the difference: If everyone does it, it is a General Plot. It may be good, or bad, but it is widely known, considered, performed, varied - in a word - "General."

"Good" implies a quality of some kind. In this case, a good idea to refine the "General" plot of cutting higher to the great idea of "Just One Higher."

"the real point of difference between me and New Guy involves what norms about fair borrowing best serve the magic community: whether a practice of being inspired by a performance to work up a new routine built around an effect seen there will help or hurt the growth of magic"

I swear to you that I would rather watch one Ricky Jay, than ten thousand acts "inspired" by Ricky Jay.

The community will grow by advancements in the depth of thinking, artistry, perfection and innovation of performers with their own vision. How can you be you when you are doing my act? (I'm not sleeping with your wife, I'm being my own version of her husband.)

Henry, you can relax. This will be my last post to you in this thread. In my opinion (and that's what ALL of this really is) you don't get it, and no amount of re-explanation will help you consider an alternative point of view, and the most likely effects of your approach upon the Art.

To Bill,

" I find myself somewhat more sympathetic to Henry than New Guy for the simple reason that Henry is willing to post behind a name rather than an anonymous handle."

This is not a character attack, this is a discussion of two opposite points of view.

I am not hiding. I use my real name to post on here all the time.

My choice of not putting names on the argument is because this is not about who we are, it is about what we choose to do- our behaviors and choices, not our personalities.

To Jon,

You get it. Every twisty, tough and not-so-fun-to-play-by-these-rules part of it. Happy to have you watching over us.

To Peter,

You get it too!

It is impossible to know if we are breaking new ground or treading on toes if we do not find our own path.

Your Seller's reference is a fine one, and I am aware of at least one earlier and one later.

I knew of all three but had no idea of the impact until the first time I saw Mr. Jay's show in NYC-

...and that night I learned everything I needed know without taking anything more than a second look at a show full of ideas that I had overlooked or had never before considered.

To Pete M,

We basically agree on most everything.

My use of the word "Thief" was intended in an argumentative way, not an accusatory or defamatory way.

It was not directed at Henry-I don't know the guy, it was my definition for the kind of person that does or does not behave in a certain way.

Even though I don't know Henry personally, I suspect we have many interests in common. We clearly both find Mr. Jay's performances inspiring, we just respond to the inspiration in different ways.

I originally tried to discuss this with him one-on-one, but his e-mail was not available.

To Robert,

The big difference is not "higher," but "just one higher."

"On the other hand, if its inspiration, then the effect I first described is Jay's, not mine. And, at that point, the "Charming Cheat" is out of buisness."

I do not suspect Mr. Jay would want to do anything that might put Martin Nash out of business...
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Postby Jeff Eline » 01/24/03 06:03 PM

Originally posted by New Guy:

Most magicians see something they like and go home and "tinker" with it, try to solve and understand the "how" of the method, to grow from playing with the material they see from other performers. Everyone does this, this is good.
Going back to the original post, this is exactly how I read Henry's question. And I agree with New Guy, this is good.
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 01/24/03 06:15 PM

Originally posted by Jeff Eline:
...Going back to the original post...
Does anyone know the history of this trick?

Are we talking about a Mike Weber type effect that is a novel conception / creation and a private showpiece or something else?

And by the way some of us have read the Holmes stories and that one was on TV just last week :-)
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Postby Guest » 01/24/03 06:18 PM

New Guy &#8211;

1. You post here all the time under your real name, you say? How very gallant of you to choose this as an occasion for using a pseudonym. It's not about an attack on anyone's character, you insist, yet you call me a thief. Then comes your clarification that your &#8220;use of the word "thief' was intended in an argumentative way, not an accusatory or defamatory way.&#8221; Well, then, I feel very much better.

This thread is a very good illustration of the value of norms against pseudonymity. Few people writing under their own names would speak as recklessly as you have here. You can disprove this anytime by simply identifying yourself and standing behind your claims.

2. You say you are in agreement with most of the others who have written on this thread. That is your judgment to make; I notice, however, that not one of them has yet described himself as in agreement with your main claims.

3. In your latest post you do not meet the substance of my arguments except to say that the framework I describe for thinking about these matters leads to too much boring magic. This would be an adequate reply if your initial posts had been limited to claims that I threaten to bore people. Alas, they went much farther.

4. You say &#8220;This will be my last post to you in this thread.&#8221; Delighted to hear it; I will be very content to let the members of this forum read our writings here and draw their own conclusions about who has spoken more persuasively, more honorably, and with more respect for the community that you claim to value.

Thanks to the rest of you for your words of support in this rather unpleasant business. It has been nice to see that most members of the forum have more class than the first member of it I had the ill fortune to encounter. I still look forward to more discussion of the effect that got this discussion started.

Best,

Henry
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Postby Edward » 01/24/03 08:23 PM

Methinks I know who New Guy is. I think I recognise the style. I think I even own a book by him which is sold on the Internet.Mentalism related. I suppose I could be wrong.

I express no views on the argument.I will simply say that I was once very amused to read in "the New Yorker" that Ricky Jay is very aghast at people stealing and appropriating material.

Yet he calls his show "Ricky Jay and his 52 assistants"

This title was directly taken from Billy 0'Connor the famous British Music Hall magician who did a card act on stage.

I am not criticising here. I hold no views on the matter.I am simply making an amused observation.
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Postby Lance Pierce » 01/24/03 08:58 PM

And I seem to remember seeing a poster of (I think) Chung Ling Soo with his hands held before him. The caption: "Chung Ling Soo and His Ten Assistants."

Sometimes I don't know where the line lies between theft and homage. I leave it to the involved parties to work it out.

Cheers,

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Postby Guest » 01/25/03 12:43 AM

I admittedly did not read all of the long posts in detail, but I think I got the gist. If one is to take sides, I must side with Henry. It appears that New Guy is a purist, one that thinks that all effects performed should be new and unique. I'm curious...what type of effects do you do Mr. Guy? Your criteria is so strict that either: #1. Your effects must be such eye-popping, cutting edge material,... never seen in print, nor by any magician or #2. You have no routine to speak of, lest you violate your very own principles
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Postby Guest » 01/25/03 11:58 AM

To Edward,

No, I'm not Max Maven or Jamy Ian Swiss, but I'm flattered.

You are absolutely right about Billy 0'Connor, but I would make the distinctions that Mr. Jay openly credited him in the printed Playbill for the show, and in many interviews about the show.

But the real distinction is ...

Mr. O'Connor was dead.

Go back and read what Jon R. wrote about Sam the Bellhop. I think it is a great way to go. It lets the orginators have their material for their lifetime, then they either pass it along themselves while they are living, or someone brave and talented tries to pick-up the gauntlet after the orginator has passed on.

Kurtis,

One can never have an accurate image of one's self, but if forced to use your catagories - I would prefer to think of myself as a number one performer.

It should be obvious from my orginal post that folks who take material without asking permission are a load of #2.
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Postby Guest » 01/25/03 12:21 PM

I'm really grateful to Mr New Guy for sharing his thoughts on this forum. I agree with all that he has said so far. I sincrely hope that he sticks around, as magic needs this train of thought in order to present the public with something meaningful and wonderful; nudging the #2s back on track in the process (I wish!).

I salute you.
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Postby Guest » 01/25/03 03:11 PM

As I read this business about "#2 performers," I think there is some danger that the stakes of this debate are becoming distorted. It's not about originality. New Guy has made clear that he has no qualms about borrowing heavily from books; and for my part, I have said performers should in all cases make their effects their own (I like new ideas and bore easily, surprising as this may seem to my faceless adversary). The issue, rather, is ethics. Let's review the position New Guy took that lead to our dispute.

You pay to see a performer do a routine. You are inspired to build a new routine of your own that uses a similar effect as its basis. Your routine adds significant new value, and is different enough (what you *say* is entirely different, for starters) that there is no possibility of anyone confusing your routine with the routine you saw the performer doing. Moreover, you may be using an entirely different method than the performer did to achieve the similar effect (you may have no idea what method he used). In New Guy's view, you nevertheless are a thief. And (the best part) you continue to be a thief even if it turns out that the effect you saw the performer doing was already in print. If you didn't *know* that it was in print when the "light bulb" went off, you remain a thief.

If it seems surprising that anyone could take so asinine a position as I have just described, I invite you to go back and have a look at New Guy's earlier posts. It's all there. That is what the fuss is about. Small wonder that he persists in keeping a bag over his head. Incidentally, this is why I doubt anybody thought he was Jamy Ian Swiss or Max Maven: those guys are distinguished writers, and they think too carefully about magic to have come up with views quite like these. They may be sticklers for originality (to repeat: I value originality, too), and for all I know they wouldn't agree with some or all of what I have written here. But in their writing I think you can count on finding a sense of proportion absent from New Guy's stuff. More to the point, those other two gents have made names for themselves by having the courage to say what they think and take responsibility for it. (Granted, "Max Maven" is a stage name; but it does no work for him as a hiding place.)

Henry
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Postby pduffie » 01/25/03 03:20 PM

'Granted, "Max Maven" is a stage name;'

Max would dispute that!
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Postby Guest » 01/25/03 04:26 PM

Originally posted by Peter Duffie:
'Granted, "Max Maven" is a stage name;'

Max would dispute that!
Strike it from the record, then. I've always liked Max and have no wish to antagonize him!

Henry
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Postby Guest » 01/25/03 06:36 PM

Originally posted by Jon Racherbaumer:
[...]
Well, I suppose that blunt, declarative sentences SEEM confrontational and off-putting; however, I would not consider them ostentatiously self-important or arrogantly lofty. [...]
Having no particular stake in the argument at hand ('Should Henry B. be allowed to adapt a Ricky Jay adaptation for himself, or does that make him one of "New Guy's" so-called thieves?'), I would point out that I personally find the style of debate used by "New Guy" to be rather rude and confrontational. The style I refer to is that of dissecting another's (H.B.'s in this case) posts piece-by-piece and then attacking each little piece with aggressive vigor. While such an approach may be fine for a court of law, in an open forum it's really not acceptable, in my opinion. That is not to say that it's not a popular tactic, but it's really not fair to the original poster. Not only does such a response rob the original post of its cohesive argument, it makes the responder look like a nit-picker, which "New Guy" clearly is.

Adding my deep distaste for ANONYMOUS posters such as "New Guy", I'd have to say I favor Henry Baskerville's arguments and hereby declare my vote for him as the winner of this debate.

Regards,
Thomas Wayne
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Postby Brian Morton » 01/25/03 09:33 PM

Can I just ask a question here?

Isn't cutting "just one card higher" a plot?

In other words, just because Ricky Jay did it in 52 Assistants, doesn't necessarily mean that it is theft to do the same thing, if you could put a spin on the presentation.

Suppose you told a story about when you first wanted to play cards as a kid, but your father was a great card player (and a bully) who hated to lose. He'd always cut one card higher.

Then, you got involved in magic later in life and learned card skills, and one day, with the tab for your college education on the line, he cut to a king ... and you cut to an ace.

The handling, the effect -- cutting one card higher -- seems to be just a plot. The presentation is something different than what Ricky Jay did -- and adds emotional meaning to what is otherwise just a gambling trick.

If a performer slight of build pulled a large, physically overbearing person from the audience and "cast" him in the role of the father (handled gently, of course), no one would think the worse of the volunteer -- and the size difference would, given the story, make the performer the sympathetic character in the story, with a fitting and satisfying ending.

So, how would that be considered "theft?"

brian :cool:
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Postby Pete McCabe » 01/26/03 12:07 AM

Brian:

Cutting one card higher isn't even a plot; it's a plot point. A plot is a series of points that move from beginning to end (with, ideally, a middle).

Simply repeating the same point several times does not make a plot, contrary to what you may see in magic.

By the way does Ricky do this differently than he did in 52 Assistants? I only saw the HBO special, and in that, if I recall correctly, it was just a tiny bit in the middle of a much larger routine. Certainly it was not nearly big enough to be considered a distinctive property associated with Mr. Jay.

In all this discussion of stealing, I wonder:
do the "it's stealing" people think it makes any difference whether the item in question is original with Mr. Jay? In 52 Assistants Ricky does a poker dealing demonstration. If I see this and am inspired to create my own, is this similarly stealing? Or does the fact that this is a standard thing mean I am as free to use it as Ricky is?
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Postby Guest » 01/26/03 12:48 AM

Pete,

In my opinion, seeing Ricky's poker deal can make you want to go back and re-learn that great poker deal from Vernon or Trost or Rusduck. I think of "Poker Deals" as a standard plot in magic.

The last show had the best "Fast and Loose" chain presentation I've ever seen, but I can't and wouldn't take a single line or bit of business from Mr. Jay. This is due to respect, not any law. Doesn't mean I can't buy any of the dozens of Fast and Loose routines and start doing the routines I purchase or create myself.

Fast and Loose is a standard. A general effect- a standard plot in magic, at least in recent times. Ricky uses a common object for the chain. Never thought of using what he uses, it makes a lot of sense, but I should stay away from the identical object because I got the idea from him, and he is entitled to his original idea.

There is very little in the world of conjuring that has not been considered or is not in print somewhere. I give almost as much credit to the performer who finds an item hidden in an old Tom Sellers manuscript and brings it to life, as I do to Mr. Sellers.

And if I see the effect in the act of "Mr. Rediscovery," is it OK for me to start performing it?

Ask yourself, "If I saw it in print too, why didn't I like it until I saw Mr. Rediscovery perform it?"

If seeing Jim Krenz do Oil and Water makes you want to go out and learn Oil and Water, great, it has become a standard effect, a general plot.

If seeing Ricky Jay do something small but significant makes us want to do it, but we have never heard or thought of it before, I think we should respect his position as the first to create or rediscover.
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Postby Guest » 01/26/03 02:12 AM

Take this for what you will:

You know if I hadn't started looking for the effect that David Copperfield did on TV which came to be known as "Grandfather's Legacy", the disappearance of three aces to reappear in a fourth packet, years ago (which is the same thing Henry is doing, looking for different methods of achieving the same effect) I would have never been able to find different variation on the effect such as A Dream of Aces, Classical Aces, Aces in their Faces...etc.

It was through asking the same type of question Henry asked that people recommended different sources. I found this very helpful. I was very new to magic then and didn't realize about all the different plots that were out there. I also did the same thing after seeing Rene Levand on TV with his Oil and Water routine. What did asking about the effects I had seen on tv do for me? Other magicians realizing I was asking about specific plots, pointed me in the right direction rather than critized me which in turn educated me. I sought out the different sources which lead to opening up a whole new world to me.
Over the past couple of years, I have seen more bickering and fighting among magicians just because someone was seeking advice. I even asked about a website address to a magic shop that I couldn't find linked or through searches about 4 months ago on another board and the guy came back with an answer and accused me of not being able to use the internet. If someone is be harsh to someone for asking a simple question why answer it. Be helpful and provide information, point people in the right direction. Is it going to kill you? If you feel it will don't do it.

How can laymen like magicians when we can't even like each other enough to help each other out? No wonder a lot of magicians run into hecklers, a lot of them are in our own society (we put down our own). I have almost given magic up completely at times because of all the crap I have been reading but I love it enough not to; as well as meeting people with a passion to teach and learn. Think about it, what did we call the teacher in school who was harsh to us when we asked a simple question but seemed like it was killing them to give us the answer? Everyone loves the teacher who takes time and is very helpful.

I apologize for all the errors regarding grammer and punctuation but I am about to fall asleep at the keyboard. Just remember that Henry was asking about different methods of achieving an effect. Give him a few sources if you have them so he can explore which one he might like. You could open up a great world for him that he never knew about.
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Postby Guest » 01/26/03 07:12 AM

Jon:
To take your posits to an admittedly absurd conclusion...there are only 88 notes on a piano. There are only 26 letters in the (English) alphabet. They can be organized into specific combinations, resulting in music and words.

So where is the line that demarcates between inspiration based on another's organization of those very same notes/letters, and plagiarism? And if we choose to take another's organization and, by reorganizing, improve on it (whether or not it makes it better is a matter of personal opinion), and if we credit the original author for the inspiration, does it not become ours? (J.K. Rowling can hardly claim the patent on stories about boy wizards, but she has taken the idea, improved on it, and made it her own.) Notice, I'm not saying that I have the right to churn out a DVD or book with that effect in it, even if I have changed it. I'm not even gonna go NEAR that hornet's nest.

It's not a carte blanche, of course...many of us will remember the now-departed George Harrison being sued successfully for his appropriation of the music from "He's So Fine," in his "My Sweet Lord."
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Postby Randy Naviaux » 01/27/03 12:25 AM

Jon - Please re-read "Elements of style."

Then 'omit needless words'.

Your giving me a headache here:)

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Postby kenguru » 01/27/03 05:36 AM

New Guy,

In New Guy's view, you nevertheless are a thief. And (the best part) you continue to be a thief even if it turns out that the effect you saw the performer doing was already in print. If you didn't *know* that it was in print when the "light bulb" went off, you remain a thief
Can you reply to this?

I basically agree with what you say except the above quote, but think that even though anonymity is a norm online in this case you should use your real name.

A very good discussion btw :cool:

Haim
Haim
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Postby Jeff Eline » 01/28/03 08:41 AM

Well I guess this solves who New Guy is...

Magic Cafe topic - click here.....
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/28/03 09:32 AM

I've cross-checked New Guy's IP and Ortiz' IP and there's no match. So, despite the startling similarity of the material discussed, I don't think he's New Guy.
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