Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

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skmayhew
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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby skmayhew » July 17th, 2019, 3:20 pm

So... for those of you who hold XX in disdain, do you give a pass to those who SELL the secrets to tricks they didn't create?

I'm pretty sure none of these guys invented sponge bunnies*:

http://www.penguinmagic.com/s/sponge+bunnies+live

For the record, I don't think what XX is doing is a big deal, and I'm cool with these guys profiting from sponge bunnies. Just wondering where others are drawing the line.

*Sponge reference: https://www.conjuringcredits.com/doku.php?do=search&id=misc%3Asponge_rabbits&q=sponge

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 17th, 2019, 4:26 pm

You raise an important and interesting point.

But I think there are some distinctions that can be considered. Selling a classic effect is one thing. Selling tricks for which you have received permission is also one thing.

But selling secrets in which people have interest because they saw a performer present them successfully is neither of those situations. You are profiting of the vision of artists who saw value in those tricks and made them come alive. They did the artistic work. You are just selling a chance to ogle up their creative skirts.

One question that’s good to ask if if you are offering anything unique in that which you sell. If someone has a new way of presenting a classic, or thoughts on the performance of that classic, that has value and could be ethically sold to others.

But if all you do is sell secrets - you aren’t adding anything of value to the art form. You are merely profiting by selling tickets to your peep show - where sadly those being peeped haven’t consented to your representation.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Bill Mullins » July 17th, 2019, 5:17 pm

Is it proprietary? Has a particular performer made it his own? Is the inventor still trying to hold it?

Selling a floating zombie ball is one thing; selling a floating table (like Losander) or violin (like Norm Nielsen) is another.

Selling sponge balls is one thing, selling Tom Stone's "Benson Burner" is another.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Peter Ross » July 18th, 2019, 10:47 pm

Brad Henderson wrote:But if all you do is sell secrets - you aren’t adding anything of value to the art form. You are merely profiting by selling tickets to your peep show - where sadly those being peeped haven’t consented to your representation.


I think you should loose the peep show/porn analogy. It's a little inappropriate plus it doesn't really make sense anyway. The related term "exposes" is also weird. It's inherently negative and accusatory. I think "explains" is more accurate and fair.

Have you considered that maybe explaining secrets is, in fact, adding value to the art form? Remember first, that the viewers have chosen to watch these videos. They are interested in magic. They are so interested, in fact, they would like to learn even more about the art form by way of learning about how the art form works. What's wrong with that? Instead of denigrating them as lowly peep show customers, maybe they are actually superfans. As with other arts, do these superfans not add value to magic?

Secondly, I would argue that the Explainer is adding value to the art form by providing would-be magicians with the whole story so they are more informed about buying or learning the explained trick. I've always been a little wary of the established practice of magic shop demonstrators demanding (usually to a kid) that they must buy the trick before it can be explained to them. When I demonstrated tricks in a shop, sometimes I would show the secret just so the potential customer could understand how easy or difficult it might be to learn. Should songbooks be sealed before purchasing?

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jonathan Townsend » July 18th, 2019, 11:32 pm

A poor demonstration of a piece of art followed by a base explanation of how such was accomplished offers little value to the student... though such may in fact enable the unkind and vicious - as well as disillusion those who enjoyed not knowing how the trick was done.

Yes, yes, the author needs the money (from the first page of expert) ... or for us perhaps the argument offered in The Republic about imitative art better serves our interests? ;)

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 19th, 2019, 9:58 am

The peep show analogy is highly appropriate.

Actually creep shot is even more so as the people being exposed have not consented to it.

If these were ideas created wholly by the person exposing I would have no problem with it.

But they aren’t

He has done zero creative work.

He is merely profiting off of others.

And exposure is the perfect word because that’s all that’s being done. The opposite of exposure isn’t explaining, its teaching. And teaching requires empowerment.

If I explain to you how something is done, the magic ends at that step. You can no longer experience the magic of that ‘trick’. The magic dies.

Now if I properly teach you, which means you are actively interesting in acquiring a skill, then it is true the magic still stops for you at that moment, but you are empowered to go forth and create that magic for others.

These types of videos do not do that. (And to be fair, I will say that many magic lectures don’t really do that either.).

These videos advertise themselves as secrets revealed. They aren’t taking the time to instill the skills and knowledge required to further the art of magic. They are merely offering a peep show into the under belly of the craft behind magic.

Exposure is the perfect word.

It’s just a flash of underwear to make people think they saw something special - and it only makes it more challenging for them to form a deeper more substantial relationship with magic because it places the focus on the most superficial elements.

And you are making a false equivalence between giving information to someone who has developed the skills to convey magic and is looking to find an ideal tool with which to do so and posting secrets revealed videos on the internet for anyone who just wants to know.

I don’t know if that’s because you didn’t really think it through, or if you are hopelessly naive and imagine that there are thousands of information starved budding magicians just waiting for the chance to get started.

Here’s how we know that’s not true:

Ricky Jay once claimed there are more books on magic than any other art form. There are clearly thousands of bytes of data out there about it in various form. There are countless people who have access to this information.

And yet, we still don’t great advancement in the art.

As Tom posted, even with resources and access most people are just looking for toys with which to amuse themselves and the cheapest, easiest way possible for them to feel like they have accomplished something.

You are defending these videos as a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist. The people who really want this information, who have the willingness to do something great once they get it, will find it.

If they have access to YouTube they have access to countless magic books and articles and videos written by people who know what they are taking about for people who truly want to learn.

This person is merely a profiteer who makes money by taking videos looking up other people’s creative skirts.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Bill Mullins » July 19th, 2019, 1:18 pm

Peter Ross wrote:Have you considered that maybe explaining secrets is, in fact, adding value to the art form?


I don't want to speak for Brad (although someone should -- he is very shy), but I believe he thinks more about magic than most. I'm sure he has considered this, and that he has come to the same conclusion that so many of the other "thinkers" in magic have over the centuries -- that exposure is bad for magic. Bad for magic spectators, for magic inventors, for magic performers, and for the art as a whole.

It takes value away from magic.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jonathan Townsend » July 19th, 2019, 1:25 pm

Bill Mullins wrote:It takes value away from magic.
Not if you're selling the tools shown.
Taking an example from carpentry, consider "Home Improvement" and "Tool Time".
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jonathan Townsend » July 19th, 2019, 2:09 pm

Peter Ross wrote:I think you should loose the peep show/porn analogy. It's a little inappropriate plus it doesn't really make sense anyway. The related term "exposes" is also weird. It's inherently negative and accusatory. I think "explains" is more accurate and fair.
A guy named Ponisn disagreed with your position back in 1853 when writing "Nouvelle Magie Blanche Dévoilée" (Latest Magic Tricks Revealed) for the open market. Our market continues to proffer "Classic Secrets", "Inner Secrets", "More Inner Secrets", "Ultimate Secrets", "Revelations", and so on.
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Peter Ross » July 19th, 2019, 2:48 pm

Bill Mullins wrote:...exposure is bad for magic. Bad for magic spectators, for magic inventors, for magic performers, and for the art as a whole.


dogma: a principle or set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true.

The only exposure that hurts magic is exposure through poor performance.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jonathan Townsend » July 19th, 2019, 7:12 pm

Peter Ross wrote:The only exposure that hurts magic is exposure through poor performance.
Such could and has been said of the arts in general (Plato) though our craft has the distinction of relying upon its technique remaining both unsuspected and undetected - which has us using the term exposure in a different sense here.

By the way, about your question "Should songbooks be sealed before purchasing" - have a look at the instrumental parts of some modern works as sold in songbooks. For example there's been recent discussion about the copyright on some guitar solos.
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Peter Ross » July 19th, 2019, 8:43 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Peter Ross wrote:The only exposure that hurts magic is exposure through poor performance.
Such could and has been said of the arts in general (Plato) though our craft has the distinction of relying upon its technique remaining both unsuspected and undetected - which has us using the term exposure in a different sense here.


Even factoring in magic's unique "distinction of relying upon its technique remaining both unsuspected and undetected," no current form of "exposing" has demonstrated it does more harm to magic than poor performances. By a long shot.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 20th, 2019, 12:26 pm

Peter Ross wrote:
Bill Mullins wrote:...exposure is bad for magic. Bad for magic spectators, for magic inventors, for magic performers, and for the art as a whole.


dogma: a principle or set of principles laid down by an authority as incontrovertibly true.

The only exposure that hurts magic is exposure through poor performance.


The principle isn’t laid down by an authority as true - it has been proven to be true.

Just because something is true doesn’t make it dogma. Calling it so - and making a claim without evidence to back it up - doesn’t help your position.

Exposure lessens the impact of the magical experience. Why else do you think magic shops instituted the policy of not telling the secret before you buy it.

When people know the method - they stop caring.

Exposure teaches them that the most important thing to care about is the method.

Exposure is bad for magic.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 20th, 2019, 12:26 pm

Peter Ross wrote:
Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Peter Ross wrote:The only exposure that hurts magic is exposure through poor performance.
Such could and has been said of the arts in general (Plato) though our craft has the distinction of relying upon its technique remaining both unsuspected and undetected - which has us using the term exposure in a different sense here.


Even factoring in magic's unique "distinction of relying upon its technique remaining both unsuspected and undetected," no current form of "exposing" has demonstrated it does more harm to magic than poor performances. By a long shot.


Nice claim.

Now back it up.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 20th, 2019, 1:06 pm

I will share an anecdote. I’m watching ray anderson perform a levitation at Esther’s follies. It’s lovely and perfectly executed.

Some frat boy in the row in front of me leans over to his future date rape victim and tells her ‘there’s a fork lift behind the curtain.’

This is what he ‘learned’ from a magic exposure show.

Now, if you want to claim that exposure allows people a better understanding of magic, this case undermines your claim

You see, behind that curtain was a solid plate glass window and behind that was a busy city street.

The forklift method is impossible for that space.

If exposure made people better magic appreciators he would have realized that and been in greater appreciation.

But he didn’t.

Because exposure closes minds and experiences, it doesn’t open them.

When people have an answer, they stop seeking.

And worse, in this case, they try to prevent others from having a magical moment, instead making it about themselves.

Those shows aired a decade ago??

How many revolutionary new levitation systems were built by people who were inspired to do so by those shows?

Answer:

None.

And those were seen by millions of people.

Millions.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Peter Ross » July 20th, 2019, 2:20 pm

That anecdote doesn't prove anything.

Spectators will always speculate, always have: Someone leans over and whispers "He's put it up his sleeve," or "She's got the ball in her other hand." This happens regardless of whether or not they have seen "exposure" videos. And by the way, why shouldn't they speculate? The very nature of magic invites speculation. However, some magicians seem to want to distance themselves from that.

Brad, you ask me to back up the claim that poor performances have done more harm to magic than "exposure" videos or TV shows? Given the five-alarm-fire reaction to XX's website, I believe it up to you to prove otherwise. Poor magic performances (artistically cheesy, lazy, offensive, technically inept) have long been lamented by magicians who know better as being detrimental to magic and magic's public image. "Exposure" videos on the other hand? Where's the evidence of the same detrimental effect beyond vague anecdotes here and there about rude spectators, and dire warnings that there will by no laymen in the future?

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby erdnasephile » July 20th, 2019, 3:06 pm

Wasn't Mahdi's original point that there wasn't a "five-alarm-fire reaction to XX's website"? ;)

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 20th, 2019, 3:59 pm

Peter,

A boring performer presenting the linking rings may discourage a viewer from wanting to see magic again, but it doesn’t prevent them from ever being able to enjoy it when they do see a competent performer.

Once they know the secret - especially when they are convinced thereof (which the authority of the exposure shows grant) - minds are closed, not opened.

As my anecdote proves

It doesn’t open their mind to appreciation; but closes their mind to the experience because for those who think that the goal of watching magic is to figure it out have already achieved that.

Exposure harms magic.

It makes it more challenging - in many ways - for an audience member to receive the experience of magic.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Peter Ross » July 21st, 2019, 12:40 am

I think it’s a limited artistic road to take when you dictate the experience for a spectator in terms of black and white: In order to experience beautiful magic, you must meet this condition of not knowing the method(s) of my illusion, either before or after the fact.

Beyond limiting ourselves artistically, it is condescending to our audiences not to acknowledge the different tiers of magical experience they can possess. At the simplest level, a spectator experiences a magic trick. The unwavering precondition to this experience, according to the “laws” of our craft, is that the spectator contains no knowledge of the method(s) of the illusion. This, we say, is what we know to be best for the spectator - it is for their own good. In addition, we demand that they can never know anything about the method(s) after the fact - again, this is what we deem to be in their best interest. Abide by these two rules, and the spectator will be fully satisfied in the best possible way by our deception.

Except maybe these shouldn’t be rules, but rather, suggestions. Tamirez and others have written about the Holy Grail of extending the deception as far beyond the initial performance as possible. It’s a beautiful notion, that of a spectator recalling an illusion to others years after the fact, treasuring the moment, perhaps even crediting it with a sense of imbuing for something else in their lives.

But that is only one possible road. It may indeed be the “best,” route but it is only one path of experience that spectator can take. For example, a person may be of the disposition to be naturally curious. After a performance (during which the spectator has had the experience of being wonderfully fooled), they may be left with something else - a hunger for answers. Magicians may scoff at this reaction, claiming, “We did not do our job if they are feeling this way!” But I don’t think they should be hard on themselves. Every spectator is different. So this person loved the magic but she wants to know how it’s done. We’ve all heard, “How did you do that?” Again, some may consider that response a failure of the performer, but is it really?

So this naturally curious spectator with that gnawing feeling decides to look some things up. Is this an act of artistic treason they are carrying out upon themselves? Are they sabotaging the magic they experienced (last week, last hour, last-minute) by seeking answers? Our “laws” would have us believe so, certain that this spectator is heading down a path to disappointment.
But, surprise! What if this curious person finds additional joy in their discovery? “A second surprise” as one of XX’s commentators put it. Some magicians would say this experience is the exception to the rule - the rule being that discovering the method(s) almost always leads to disappointment - we’ve experienced it ourselves and we’ve witnessed it with our own eyes. But what if that is not the whole story? Can we allow for the possibility that there are people who enjoy both the initial magic experience and the discovery afterward, and that, most importantly, these people are not to be felt bad for, dismissed or scorned? For some of them, the deception and discovery go hand in hand. And again, it doesn’t have to be black and white. Maybe this type of curious person sometimes like to be fooled and leave it at that, and sometimes they want more. Maybe they just want to experience a little behind the scenes of magic, so to speak - they want to be a little more of a fan - not a magician, for not everyone is comfortable performing, but just some knowledge. How can we not view this solicitation as appreciative and even admiring of what we do?

Even if you as a magician have not encountered this type of spectator, does this mean they do not exist? Are we really to think that the only people (other than magicians themselves) who seek out methods do so for unsavory purposes (to “catch” a magician or to boast about the secret to a friend during a performance)? Or perhaps worse, that they are just simple-minded plebeians looking for a quick fix?

Even if it turned out the majority of method-seeking laymen consisted of the above, I would still be averse to the reinforcing of the “wall” that so many advocate for. I would not be comfortable with both limiting both my own artistic potential and the experiences of the audiences we want to entertain.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jonathan Townsend » July 21st, 2019, 1:01 am

erdnasephile wrote:Wasn't Mahdi's original point that there wasn't a "five-alarm-fire reaction to XX's website"? ;)
To react that way would be giving attention to undesirable behavior.

You can demonstrate some of what's known about perception and cognition without reference to magic trick methods. The Wiseman color changing card trick video does exactly that. :) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v3iPrBrGSJM

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Bill Mullins » July 21st, 2019, 1:15 am

Peter -- part of the problem with your argument is that you only can express it as a possibility -- "what if there was another way". You don't offer any examples of spectators whose magical or artistic experience was enhanced by knowing the secret. Whereas every performer knows from experience that spectators who've had the trick exposed beforehand don't get that slack jawed feeling that comes only from seeing something that simply could not have happened, and that defines what makes magic different from all other performing arts; and they know from their own experience that seeing magic that you know how it is performed is a different, lesser experience than seeing magic that you don't know the secret of (all else being equal).

I can watch a tape of Tommy Wonder doing Zombie and appreciate that he is doing something at a very high level of skill and art. But it will never affect me the way a nameless magician, probably a part-time pro, did when he performed it at a Blue and Gold banquet when I was ten, and I knew that silver balls could not float and yet this one did.

You are making an extraordinary claim, one that flies into the face of the first-hand knowledge and experience of those you are arguing with. If you are doing so just because you like being contrary, so be it (and I understand, having done so myself on occasion). But if you are arguing for a position you really hold, and are truly trying to convince others of its correctness, you've got to come up with something better than "you could be wrong and I could be right".

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jonathan Townsend » July 21st, 2019, 1:26 am

Re: "The unwavering precondition to this experience, according to the “laws” of our craft, is that the spectator contains no knowledge of the method(s) of the illusion." - I disagree. The ideal is that how we do things offers no cues or clues to what methods are used.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 21st, 2019, 8:59 am

Peter,

Again you make the mistake of assuming a problem exists when it doesn’t.

Let’s assume this mythical spectator exists for whom knowledge of the secret will enhance their magical experience.

With all the magic books, videos, and teaching materials available out there, that person already has access to everything they could want - in many cases provided by people who actually created the material or who are real teachers who understand and care about the educational experience of their target audience.

A kid putting up others secrets to make money from YouTube doesn’t ‘help’ the situation.

If anything, it just erects another root rotted tree in the forest to make it harder for those serious to find the real information that would sate this alleged urge they have.

And just for the record, I think artistically anything is fair game.

This person isn’t interested in art.

He’s interested in clicks, fame and money at the expense of others work and traditions.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Paco Nagata » July 21st, 2019, 12:39 pm

Internet is like a huge library and video library. So then, now it's much easier to get to know magic secrets, specially for free. But that's not the worrying or alarming part, since when people take time to go to the library, obviously they look for what they are interesting in. Who likes cars looks for books about cars, who likes Asian cuisine, look for books about Asian cuisine... I guess that no much people would take their valuable time to look for magic unless they really are interesting in and take it seriously. The same thing happen in Internet. It's easy to get information in the Web, but even though I reckon that no much people would use their time to look for how to do an Ascanio Spread, unless that person is really interesting in it.
The real problem is people doing magic abruptly, without much misdirection or psycological concept that could drive the effect to a real magical impact; people that don't work the theoretical concepts of the illusion of magic; people that don't act as a magician, but as someone that have learned a trick.
"The Passion of an Amateur Card Magician"
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1lEjVK ... elA4rNMjG9
"La pasion de un cartómago aficionado"
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1HQrbuq ... p=drivesdk

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jonathan Townsend » July 21st, 2019, 6:16 pm

Paco Nagata wrote:... people that don't act as a magician, but as someone that have learned a trick.
:idea: Agreed
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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Mahdi Gilbert » July 22nd, 2019, 3:37 pm

I would say guard your secrets as the vaults of the Bank of England are guarded. If rivals or even members of your audiences happen to see the way you are doing your tricks, you will have to scrap your whole show and start all over again. - Jasper Maskelyne

Houdini's secrets have never been authentically disclosed, for like a true magician he refused to reveal his secrets. - Jasper Maskelyne

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Paco Nagata » July 23rd, 2019, 5:49 am

Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Paco Nagata wrote:... people that don't act as a magician, but as someone that have learned a trick.
:idea: Agreed


Let me tell you a personal situation:

I'm not bad at many card magic technique as I specially love card magic, but I'm a really "dead lost" at the technique called "second deal." So, I've NEVER in my life performed a trick that require that technique, even though there are several interesting tricks that I really would like to perform. I've refused those trick just because I love and respect magic and all magicians, following the premise of not doing anything that you don't master.
I'm still working on my clumsy "second deal." I maybe die before performing a trick that require that technique, but don't give up practicing.
"The Passion of an Amateur Card Magician"
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1lEjVK ... elA4rNMjG9
"La pasion de un cartómago aficionado"
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1HQrbuq ... p=drivesdk

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Denis Behr » July 23rd, 2019, 7:31 am

"I don't like exposures, But I don't like the cry baby attitudes of some of my screeching friends. So for heaven's sake, let's be a little more mannish about such stuff."
— Charlie Miller, Genii

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Longtimelurker » July 23rd, 2019, 8:37 am

"Confounded around the horn? Try say for you truth without feeling."
-- Phillipe Bentoux

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby erdnasephile » July 23rd, 2019, 9:29 am

Denis Behr wrote:"I don't like exposures, But I don't like the cry baby attitudes of some of my screeching friends. So for heaven's sake, let's be a little more mannish about such stuff."
— Charlie Miller, Genii


That's a great quote--love Charlie Miller!

However, the statement is a bit ironic coming from one of the most secretive magicians ever.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby JustinM » July 23rd, 2019, 10:15 am

A secretive magician, who wrote a column for genii over a period of 15-20 years? not to mention books, lecture notes, stevens magic videos... Just because he wasn't a jukebox request magician, doesn't make him secretive..

If he declined to show you his pass, it wasn't because he was being secretive, it was because the pass he uses is in the old books that, to quote Mr. Miller himself "nobody wants to read"

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby erdnasephile » July 23rd, 2019, 11:11 am

I meant no offense by my remark, but several of those that knew him (White, Weber, Thompson, Riser etc.) have noted verbally and in print that Mr. Miller, while enjoyable to talk to and be around, was pretty tight with the real work unless you knew what you were doing (and sometimes even if you did). I never had the privilege of knowing the man, so I could certainly be wrong about this and am open to correction.

I probably should not have used the lazy term "secretive", but rather "someone who valued and guarded real secrets." Again, no criticism was meant and I apologize if I have mischaracterized what Mr. Miller was like.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby JustinM » July 23rd, 2019, 11:29 am

No offense taken. I have heard that too about Mr. Miller, just wanted to remind people that, while he was definitely not running around everybody, everything all the time, he has discussed magic and recorded his thoughts on it..

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 23rd, 2019, 11:56 am

But what miller never did was exploit magic, denigrating and harming it, for his own personal gain and fame.

No one here is advocating that secrets no longer be published or taught. We are discussing the venues and means of doing so which raise magic as an art, and not merely exploit it.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Richard Kaufman » July 23rd, 2019, 2:19 pm

Charlie was indeed a secretive person, but very open if he knew you.
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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Peter Ross » July 23rd, 2019, 3:01 pm

When a magic creation is marketed and sold it enters the realm of commodification. Is that not a form of artistic exploitation? Magic as art is devalued when a unique trick is duplicated a thousand times over and sold in the marketplace, like posters of a famous painting (Walter Benjamin).

So when XX purchases this reproduction and sells a video about it (to advertisers), he is participating in the same system (the Market) as the original creator. He is no more to blame in the exploitation/devaluation of the creation than the original creator, now a seller of reproductions.

And since what XX is selling is based on reproduction in the marketplace, he has every right to “reveal” the contents of the reproduction (which he has purchased) in any manner he chooses.

As for the videos he makes using broadcast performances (in China), one can argue that the network that broadcasts the performances owns the footage and that XX doesn’t have a legal right to reproduce it. That’s a valid accusation. However, from an artistic standpoint, I would posit that since XX is substantively changing the footage by adding his superimposed video commentary, a case can be made that he has artistically appropriated it by adding a different meaning - that meaning being the “reveals” of the performance. He has made something different, artistically speaking. He has given the viewer something new to think about in relation to the original performance.

You may find what he does distasteful, but he has every right to do so, both ethically and artistically.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Brad Henderson » July 23rd, 2019, 4:38 pm

And none of that changes the fact that what he does do to others work is being done 1) without permission and 2) to the detriment of the original intent of that work.

I agree that magic is lessened when a unique trick enters the marketplace in is duplicated 1,000 time’s over. And yes, there are MANY magicians who are exploiting magic for their own gain by doing so.

And those who buy these tricks in an effort to duplicate what they saw the first monkey do, are not engaged in an artistic practice. When we see people sell tricks created by other performers we tend to call them out and condemn them - not defend them.

I don’t know how you can proclaim what he is doing as artistically sound as there is no transcendent element to his work. He isn’t offering anything beyond a technical explanation. That’s like saying One who describes the fuse box grid used in Hamilton is engaged in an artistic act.

Art requires the intentional manipulation of symbolic structures to convey a feelingful response. There are no symbolic structures being manipulated here. The work is discursive, not presentational.

For an object or act to function as a symbol it must have a transcendent quality - pointing to something beyond itself.

This doesn’t happen here either. This is the antithesis of transcendence.

And you ignore the wishes of the original creator. If the original creator has no problem with others explaining their work, you would be correct. But magic secrets are bought and sold with a knowledge of understanding that these methods are not meant to be disseminated.

At least they were at some time.

And in this case the person cannot plead ignorance , because those whose work he is taking and profiting from have told him they do not want them to.

No one has claimed what he is doing is illegal. But you have failed to make a case for it being either ethical or artistic, based on any understanding of either of those terms

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Bill Mullins » July 23rd, 2019, 4:56 pm

You keep using these words "ethically" and "artistically". I do not think they mean what you think they mean.

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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jonathan Townsend » July 23rd, 2019, 6:28 pm

Peter Ross wrote:When a magic creation is marketed and sold it enters the realm of commodification...
as limited by copyright, the Berne convention, and subject to criticism in terms of prior art.
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Re: Magic Community in TOTAL SILENCE as Youtube Magician EXPOSES Hundreds of Magic Tricks

Postby Jackpot » July 23rd, 2019, 11:34 pm

The original performers and creators have shown invention, creativity and art. XX has not contributed anything original or distinct. He offers nothing except that which he has stolen. He has not behaved ethically nor has he done anything artistic.
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