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Thomas Wayne
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I’ve attempted to address this issue in other threads, but it’s been suggested that it was “off topic”, so I thought if I started a thread specifically about this issue then a few more readers might have the chance to read it, and to join in the discussion.

Repeatedly Jonathan Townsend had implied and/or outright claimed that he is the original inventor of 3Fly. I dispute that claim.

For those who come into this discussion late (or have been hibernating for the last 3 years), Chris Kenner published “ThreeFly” - often abbreviated as “3Fly” -, in his MagicMan Examiner magazine. In writing that routine, Chris failed to credit Jonathan Townsend for inspiration, though in a later write-up (in Richard Kaufman’s "Totally Out of Control") he DOES credit Townsend for inspiration [only].

After a long absence from the magic scene (during which many thought him dead) Jonathan Townsend surfaced and now seems to steadfastly maintain that virtually any version of “Visual Coins Across” belongs to him. That is, any routine which involves the visual transposition of one or more coins is HIS [Townsend’s] property and has been performed, explained and sold without his permission, and therefore unethically. In his mind, that makes him the “inventor” of 3Fly and his version the only “real” version.

I’ve had the opportunity to review Jonathan’s [very recent] privately published historical notes and detailed explanation of the coin effect that he claims as the “real” original 3Fly. In spite of the good deal of unsubstantiated – possibly revisionist – history offered in that manuscript, in the end it seems clear that - even by Townsend’s own account - Kenner built on something he was willingly shown, and he created a very different routine around it. In studying his posts on the subject I perceive that Townsend seems to view this as wrong.

Interestingly, just a few years ago Townsend admitted that he had done something similar with an unpublished Ken Krenzel move to create his own routine!

It is my belief that this is how magic – indeed, how ANY art form – evolves. You can take virtually ANY effect, idea or routine that is publicly connected to any famous magician and trace its roots back to somebody else. If the individual sleights or presentation concepts could be so easily held captive by one person there would be no magic today. We could very possibly have no Lance Burton, David Copperfield, Penn & Teller, etc, because they ALL have built on the works of others.

In summation:
Jonathan Townsend did NOT invent 3Fly. He invented a close-up routine that involved the visual transposition of one of a group of coins from one hand to the other. He showed it to a number of other magicians and some of them built on what he showed them. Many years later, Chris Kenner – who very possibly believed Townsend to be DEAD at that time – published his routine. Inspired by Townsend – how much we don’t know – but decidedly different from what he originally created. By my read, the original Townsend routine can be shown to a few people, up close and personal. Kenner’s version can be seen by a small theater full of people, and he called his “ThreeFly’. That’s where the name came from, that’s where the hands-up-in-front-of-the-face version came from, and that’s who “invented” ThreeFly (3fly).

The floor is open…

Regards,
Thomas Wayne
MOST magicians: "Here's a quarter, it's gone, you're an idiot, it's back, you're a jerk, show's over." Jerry Seinfeld
Adam Keisner
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Is it really neccesary to resurrect this topic Thomas? Quiet time of year in Alaska, I imagine?

Best,
AK
Jonathan P.
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Hi,
I don't get your point. You say that every "original invention" can be related to a previous existing thing (which I kind of agree with) but you ask, "who is the real inventor of it?"
So, I think if we agree on the first point, the question is "ipso facto" obsolete.

I'd like to add that, in the recent posts (and this is, maybe, due to some reactions like yours) Jonathan Townsend's reactions about the "3-fly" discussions became a lot more smooth and stopped to be revendicative and angry. On the contrary, I felt that the discussions evolved toward the idea that, as you say, "effects always have an outside inspiration and are always taken away by other people."

Well, I don't know if I am crystal-clear, but I don't feel at my ease with the "emotional color/mood" (sorry, I don't know the English way to express what I have in mind) of your post.

Jonathan.
Mike Wild
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Who asked you to "clarify" the topic in the first place? What makes you the definitive authority? Don't you have pool cues to make and magazines to deliver?

You've made this a personal mission, and I for one am sick of it. Did you invent coins across or three fly? No?? Hmmmm. I guess there's some other reason that you feel that you're an expert on this subject?

These forums are for contribution, not a place for you to wage your tiresome personal wars against people.

You can shoot back if you like, I said what I wanted to say, and I've read your dronings on more than enough in the past... I'm done with this thread and this subject.


Mike
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Close.Up.Dave
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Quote:

You've made this a personal mission, and I for one am sick of it. Did you invent coins across or three fly? No?? Hmmmm. I guess there's some other reason that you feel that you're an expert on this subject?


I would assume no concidering he's the one who's ASKING who invented it. I'm sure he's just making observations on what he's researched and heard (not that it's all true). Either way these forums are here for him to ask questions, what's the use of them if everyone would rather tell him to shut his mouth? I may not agree with all of his points, but he still has the right to ask the question if he wants. It too don't agree with the mood/emotion of the post, so if you don't want the topic to come up again then don't reply, let the thread die.
Stuart Hooper
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He's made up his mind, quite some time ago.

Jonathan Townsend invented the thing. Chris Kenner published a very minor variation of it without asking permission, and while the original was under wraps. Those that claim Chris Kenner made the leap to chest level, etc, are also somewhat off base...the original works of Jonathan Townsend contain enough variations of the concept to do it close-up, on stage, chest level, standing, seated, gaffed, ungaffed...pretty much anything you could think of. No one person, out of all the countless variations that have been published, however, thought to ask Jonathan first...just ask...run it by him, nothing.

Many have said, well, no big deal, right, it's just a coin trick. I think the fact that so many have published so much on the matter, and were too afraid to do their research proves that it meant very much to them, indeed.

Thomas Wayne is not *asking*..he's telling. Not entirely sure why he's made it his mission, but there are plently out there that continue spouting off ideas without having much factual base.

I believe people that were there, "names", if we must drop them, can verify that Jonathan's work on the history of the time is hardly revisonist.

A few minutes research could have easily proven Jonathan was not dead either, that argument continues to be ridiculous.

Mr. Wayne is obviously something of a sub-standard mentalist...I caution anyone to believe to heartily his readings.

Chris Kenner and Bob Koehler's transgressions are not limited to work by Jonathan, the former seeing fit to published un-published moves by Geoff Latta, and the latter, making free with gaffs invented by Steve Dusheck.

Jonathan Townsend's work in our field continues to be of the absoltuely highest caliber. I think evidence of this for those who have not seen, is that a trivial assembly of a few tools he invented for coin magic, a demonstration piece for a concept, if you will, what the world knows as "3fly", has sparked so many variations, publications, etc....I for one hope that his good stuff remains private for a long time to come, because the community continues to prove that it is not ready. Grow up, children!

For the record, in hostile e-mails, Thomas Wayne has labeled me Towsend's "syncophantic lapdog". I believe this term is meant to discredit my views on the subject, etc. I would only like to say that I know Jonathan Townsend only through long distance correspondence, and I met him, because upon deciding that I wished to learn "3fly", maybe buy Koehler's version, I did about five minutes of research, sent out a few PM's, and about a day later decided to talk to Jonathan about the matter. He could not have been kinder, presenting options and telling the story of what occured, which of course, I verified with several people in this community whom I take to be above reproach. Our relationship continued based mostly on a mutual appreciation for other matters.

"One man's brain plus one other will produce one half as many ideas as one man would have produced alone. These two plus two more will produce half again as many ideas. These four plus four more begin to represent a creative meeting, and the ratio changes to one quarter as many ..."
bigchuck
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OK, so Todd Lassen's work sucks and Mr Towshend DIDN'T invent Visual Coins Across (which essentially IS what has become 3Fly in magic vernacular) because of course, Jonathan Townshend WAS dead but was resurrected for the sole purpose of bugging Chris Kenner (and all the other knock offs) with the idea of magic ethics.

This sounds like a bad magi-political soap opera story-line set in neverland.

now the obligatory disclaimer -- that's just IMHO. Smile
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Mb217
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Not exactly sure why TW chases Ol' JT like this, from thread to thread, but boy what an adversary...Smile JT can be bit off-color, snappy and all-knowing at times but I don't picture him much as a liar. Wayne don't seem like much of a liar either to be honest but his recurring actions on this seem to have a biting spirit to it and that's not cool. He just might be prosecuting the real victim in this case, and why is anyone prosecuting anyone on this forum??? Anyway, I guess in Wayne, Ol' JT is met on the mat with someone ready to take him on historically blow for blow, and do it with a smile, not in the least bit amazed by his knowledge, wit or vocabulary.Smile Who's right???...Like I say, JT might be a lot of things, some good, some not so good in ways at times, but he comes across as mostly a good guy and not a liar, and seemingly in a clear-enough mind about all this from the beginning. One thing is for sure, he seems to be somewhere at the very close inception of the effect, if not the absolute epicenter of the matter. It is also quite possible, albeit probable, that someone might've picked his pocket on the way to the store on this one. And without JT it seems that Kenner had little if anything much in his pocket to be picked in this regard at all. Hmmmmmmm....Just my view.
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Dan Watkins
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One matter of correction, Kenner does name Jonathan Townsend for inspiration in Magic Man Examiner as well.

I have tossed my opinions on the matter into the ring before, but have decided to stay out of it because I am resigned to the fact that I was not there. So I won't get involved in the he said she said game.

However, looking at the situation from the outside looking in, I believe the assertions are as follows:

Jon showed Chris some form of the plot that Chris even acknowledges in his writeup.

Chris put together a version that caught the fancy of many magicians and his version became very poplular.

Chris' version is very different than the version Jon showed him.

However Jon's unpublished written history of the effect includes accounts of him experimenting with all versions (including the methods used in Ultimate 3 Fly) which asserts that Jon's work is comprehensive of more than what was shown to Chris Kenner.

I believe Jon Townsend invented the open concept of coins traveling visibly from one hand to another. So Jon invented the "VCA" plot with coins. It was never published.

Chris Kenner's version is coined the name Threefly, therefore in the strictest definition of attributing the name "Threefly" with Chris' particular routine, Chris invented "Threefly". This routine became very popular and has spurred many variations.

I think that is the historical assertions on it, devoid of any opinion. I am sure those who where there can correct me if I am wrong.
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Werner G. Seitz
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I don't know any of the background re what's here talking about.
Nevertheless I have some opinion re what's discussed here.

First of all, to *invent* a new name (f.ex. 3 Fly) for a certain routine that is almost equal to an existing one, still owes credit to the mentioned existing one, which sounds to be given in this case.

Next, I think Mr. Townsedn simply *NOW* should make his original version publically available via a booklet and the *trade*, and here also give his variations and thoughts re that matter.

No doubt, he'll mention Chris Kenners involvement as well as the ones of others that FOLLOWED his original premise.

This, no doubt, will again give renewed discussions, but then at least we have the honest and printed (black on white) views from JT, as well as his thoughts on progres and what's happend since he started to have it shown to some of the ppl involved the very first time..

My suggestion to Mr. Townsend would be, to also include as many as possible fotos or 'good' drawings done by a competent illustrator.

That's the way Mr. Townsends original concept can be safed for the future generations of fellow coinworker, who -no doubt- will appreciate it.
Learn a few things well.....this life is not long enough to do everything.....

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Jonathan Townsend
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I can go so far as to state that Chris Kenner is the author of a booklet titled "three fly" and also that he published a routine by that name is his magazine "magic man examainer", which along with a coins aross routine using a visual backclip recovery, was also published by Kaufman in a book titled Totally Out of Control.

I can enjoy the art and humor style of Kenner's works in small doses. That sort of satire/flippant humor and art style is a contribution to magic literature.

The moral principle involved in taking unpublished material into print by folks who are not the inventor...is perhaps a novel invention of dubious value. The fact that our community offers acclaim to those involved is puzzling to me. Is this the thing we wish to discuss and credit to those involved?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Jonathan_Miller
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Now I am not sure who here actually knows what the Townsend routine consists of. Apparently Thomas Wayne does, through his own admission, but I am not quite sure as to some of the others who have posted. I saw Jonathan perform the routine when he first returned to the magic scene and at one time, when I was more actively involved in magic, was attempting to help him write and publish this material. This eventually fell by the wayside but I feel all this gives me some background to make the following statements.

The only similarity between Kenner's routine and Townsend's is that the coins travel "visibly." If this is enough reason to claim theft is a debateable issue, though I tend to believe it is not. Townsend's routine is nowhere near as versatile as Kenner's.

Though Jonathan and myself have had some heated moments I consider him a friend in magic and I do like his routine very much. I dislike the Kenner routine and many of its variants. While I have never met Kenner my one interaction with him was unpleasant. Therefore I can hope that people see I am not playing favorites as I do prefer Townsend's work on the subject. I do disagree though that Kenner stole the routine from Jonathan though he obviously was inspired, which he mentioned.
Werner G. Seitz
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One has to learn from the unfortunately 'dead' ones..
PUBLISH..like Marlo did...that's the only way to preserve ones material...apart from it is the best way to protect it..nobody does read it Smile
Learn a few things well.....this life is not long enough to do everything.....

( Words of wisdom from Albert Goshman ...it paid off for him - it might
as well for YOU!!!- My own magic is styled after that motto... Smile )
mystre71
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IMO If Kenner and Kohler were shown Jon's routine (By Jon or anyone else) and not given permission(by Jon) to work on, then they should have respected and appreciated the routine, and waited for Jon to publish his work on it. To take what they saw go home work out a routine, and then to publish it was wrong. How could they know that Jon hadn't already thought of their handling before? They couldn't.

Joe
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Stuart Hooper
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Well said Joe, and it is naive of people like "Jonathan Miller" (whom I would like to see use his real name) to assume that Townsend had/has but one routine for his concept.
Jonathan_Miller
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I assume nothing. In fact, I know many of the other routines Jonathan had worked out, including at least one that was done with the hands in a similar position to the one used by Kenner. However, not only the technique but the effect looks very different.
Dan Watkins
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Joe,

I asked Kohler about his routine when I had a chance to see him in Las Vegas.

He said that although he was one of the few to have seen Jon's routine, he never went anywhere with it. It was not until Chris Kenner's publication that Bob became interested in the routine and began to work on it. His version is one of the myriad versions that have come out of Kenner's publication.

Again... I am not getting into the whole ethics of everything, just passing along what I have been told. Kenner's inspiration was Townsend directly. Bob's inspiration was Kenner.

Dan
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RS1963
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Simple, Townsend did.
Jonathan Townsend
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I was informed that Chris Kenner MAY HAVE invented a setup for the last coin vanish in the routine that while unpublished, still kind of belongs with the name "three fly" as he used to perform the thing in context of the trick.

What was published, instead of the vanish folks seem to be impressed by, was a sleight of Geoff Latta's. I don't recall seeing any crediting to Mr. Latta in the Kenner writings, nor any mention of permisions sought for the sleight.

By way of contrast, you can see this kind of situation handled in a more positive way in Kainoa's book Coins on Edge, where the Edge Grip to Edge Grip coin switch idea is discussed, credited and applied to some routines.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Thomas Wayne
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Quote:
On 2005-01-30 10:58, Stuart Hooper wrote:
[...]
Grow up, children!

For the record, in hostile e-mails, Thomas Wayne has labeled me Towsend's "syncophantic lapdog". [...]



Children? Correct me if I'm wrong Stuart, but aren't you a 17 year-old boy?

As for "syncophantic lapdog", I said no such thing; I've never used the word "syncophantic" a sentence in my life.

I called you a "yipping little lapdog", a description that is at once more accurate AND easier to spell Smile

Regards,
Thomas Wayne
MOST magicians: "Here's a quarter, it's gone, you're an idiot, it's back, you're a jerk, show's over." Jerry Seinfeld
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