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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » open letter from WAM to magic community. (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Banachek
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FROM: WORLD ALLIANCE OF MAGICIANS (WAM)

DEAR FRIENDS IN MAGIC:

After two years of trying to get the catalog (print or website address) of probably the world's largest rip-off magic builder, a European magician friend was kind enough to send WAM the website catalog address today.

Our worst fears have been confirmed. Please take a long look at the illusions this man offers, including the following proprietary intellectual property illusions of USA magic inventors and builders:

1. Zaney Blaney's "Ladder Levitation"
2. Jim Steinmeyer's "Origami", "Interlude", "Pole Levitation", "Windshear" (fan penetration), "Modern Art", "Acupuncture"

3. David Copperfield's "Death Saw"
4. Andre Kole's "Shrinking Girl"
5. The Pendragon's "Clearly Impossible" thin sawing
6. Dan Summer's "Compressed"
7. Chuck Jones "Miss Made Girl"
8. Mark Wilson's "Train Sawing"
9. Germany's Puchinger's "Mini Cube Zag" (George Kimmery has USA building rights)
10. Franz Harary's "Slicer"

And this is just a partial list. You can see them all in living color at:
http://www.dominikmagic.com Click on each photo to enlarge.

The rip-off builder is Francesco Martorana. His company name and address are:
"Studio Magic Dominik" (SMD), Via Circonvallazione, 130-90046, Monreale,
Palermo, Italy

In the USA Wolfgang Wollet, "Illusions & More Inc.", Henderson, NV, places ads in some of our magic magazines showing a half dozen public domain illusions for sale...Zig Zag, Hindu Basket, Head Chopper. etc. He entices customers to see his website catalog where all of Martorana's rip-offs are for sale. Doug Tilford and a few others are also offering these rip-off illusions invented by our USA magic inventors. But the rip-off illusions are not shown in their magic magazine ads, for obvious reasons.

WAM believes that pressure can be brought to bear to force these dealers to no longer handle rip-off illusions if they want to keep advertising in our magic magazines.

This practice is, after all, directly opposed by our stated Code of Ethics in each of our beloved magic societies.

One more thing. As you look at the catalog photos, have you ever seen such thick table bases, poor design, and so many of the secret things left out that make our original illusions successful? There is many a magician that has bought a rip-off only to find the quality and design is so poor that the trick does not even work. We believe it would be an important service to warn our magician friends and discourage them from purchasing these cheap, unethical rip-offs. It would also encourage and help nurture continuing good work by our USA magic creators.

(WAM) World Alliance of Magicians officers
Abb Dickson, President
Scott Wells, Vice President
Walter Zaney Blaney, president emeritus
http://www.magiciansalliance.com
In thoughts and Friendship
Banachek
Campus Performer of the Year two years in a row
Year 2000 Campus Novelty Act
PEA Creativity Award Recipient
http://www.banachek.com
zigmont
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For more information on proprietary intellectual property on all illusions.

http://www.zigmont.com/backstage.html

I have heard 50% of his illusions ships to Japenese dealers. It's more of an international
problem.
Zigmont
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Kendrix
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I paid the "Rights" to Jim Seinmeyer on the "Elevator" and "Bits 'N Pieces". I respect his genius as an inventor, but he lacks business acumen. I called him twice to write me a letters stating I paid for the performance rights. He never bothered to send it despite me paying several thousand dollars. That ended my enthusiasm for paying these extra fees.
When he had celebrities with no magic experience perform several of his effects, I feel he placed those in to "public domain".
Just my 2 cents as they say.
zigmont
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Why did you pay for the rights without building the ilusions? Most pay the rights at the time they having the illusion crafted.
Zigmont
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reedrc
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We do business around rights and design. We litigate anyone whom rips us off (or does not stop)
Its unacceptable for anyone to rip off effects for any reason.

Kendrix, you paid your dues to jim you don't NEED
anything saying this or that.... if you paid your covered. You did what you were saposed to do.

HOWEVER,
As a company we have contacts and papers along with rights, we are setting the standard for the next gen of magicians.

I'm sorry your experience with jim was dissapointin, but don't rip off illusions, plain and simple.

I called bill smith to alert him of this guy's website, will let you knwo the outcome if I hear anything....
Kind Regards

Ryan C. Reed
Founder, Illusion Entertainment

designer, director, theatrical consultant, digital wizard, magic impresario, wonder aficionado, Illusioneer & dream architect.

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Saydean
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Gads!
I too had a phone call about my "3 in 1" being listed on this site. Horrors! I checked it out and found out its not my illusion but it is my name( 3 in 1). It is a nice site . As far as buying those items listed there,If he ripped off the ideas it's a small step to ripping off the customers as well. Plus , dealing with someone outside the USA is extremley risky.

As a illusion builder myself I know how hard it is to protect your ideas,theories,and illusions from guys like this .

I guess the end result will be when someone gets injured or killed by one of these"original" illusions.

To Dominik: STRONZO!PROPRIO UNO SPOROCO PARASSITA!

Dutch Haling
reedrc
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Got off the phone With Bill Smith: They know of the issue and currently dealing with it accordingly.
Kind Regards

Ryan C. Reed
Founder, Illusion Entertainment

designer, director, theatrical consultant, digital wizard, magic impresario, wonder aficionado, Illusioneer & dream architect.

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Kendrix
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Zig; I did have the illusions built by Owen Redwine. When I tried to perform them at Walt Disney World I was asked to not perform these w/o written proof of payment of performance rights. That was an unusual situation, but it happened early in my use of these illusions.
reedrc
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wow, I can see why you are alittle miffed about that then....... All I can say now is its standard for the paperwork to take palce.....
Kind Regards

Ryan C. Reed
Founder, Illusion Entertainment

designer, director, theatrical consultant, digital wizard, magic impresario, wonder aficionado, Illusioneer & dream architect.

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magicalmischief
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OK...Now I am REALLY confused...

If I want to build an illusion...I purchase plans and build them. I don't make any claim that they're my design or ideas...I just perform them. I am under the assumption that by purchsing the plans that are available...thaht grants me the right to build and perform them. Am I right in this assumption? Smile
Seems to me that death is just natures way of telling us to SLOW DOWN!
Steve Brooks
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If the plans are issued and sold by the original creators, I don't see a problem.

However, there might be complications if the blueprints were being marketed by someone who is not authorized to do so.

First, they are not legit, so after you build the effect, the original creator may not be real happy seeing you perform an illusion that you didn't purchase from him.

Second, pirated blueprints are usually printed by someone who does not possess the expertese in such matters, and who in fact may not really know the inner workings, but has provided plans based on backward engineering. This can prove troublsome in several areas, not the least which is the safety factor. It's tough enough to construct an illusion with real plans, let alone drawings that are not accurate.

My suggestion would be to approach a professional in the field when wanting to add illusions to your act. Besides quality workmanship, they have the experience to help you select the proper apparatus for both you and your show. Smile

The extra money you spend will be well worth the trouble. Even legit blueprints can prove to be a disaster for an inexperienced illusion builder. It takes more than good carpentry skills to make pieces that work and appear correctly.

Though there are many experts in the field, I would recommend folks like Owen Magic Supreme (734 North McKeever Ave, Azusa,Ca.91702-2394/Phone:(626)969-4519) who specialize in such matters. Owens website can be found at: Click Here! Smile
"Always be you because nobody else can" - Steve Brooks
magicalmischief
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Thank you...So I am safe if I make illusions from the Paul Osborne books...and Mark Wilson books, correct? If I purchased the books from say Hank Lees - the fact that they are published for purchase would seem to allow for the construction and performance without issue...

And on a non related note... I had the priveledge to meet the one and only Norman Bigelow...He actually lives in a neighboring town and was able to spend some time speaking with him. I saw the notorious "Doors of Death" what a great guy!
Seems to me that death is just natures way of telling us to SLOW DOWN!
Steve Brooks
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"So I am safe if I make illusions from the Paul Osborne books...and Mark Wilson books, correct?"

From a legal standpoint yes. However, unless you are very experienced in such matters, you may still wish to consult an expert.

While the small illusion type effects in Mark Wilson's Course in Magic (Square circle, etc) may be okay for the average guy to build, the Osborne illusions are a whole different story. I have all his plans, and there is some great material, but his blueprints are pretty much rough drawings. I would not trust all the dimensions as fact when building. Again, seek an expert.

But to get back to the original topic of this thread, when buying an illusion or the blueprint, please buy from an authorized dealer. When in doubt, ask around. Smile
"Always be you because nobody else can" - Steve Brooks
Magical Dimensions
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I used to live in Germany and know about the rip offs that are selling illusions. There really isn't anything that can be done. As the rip off people say. "Copy right laws end at the border".

Ray Noble
Thomas Wayne
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Quote:
On 2002-11-01 23:37, Magical Dimensions wrote:
I used to live in Germany and know about the rip offs that are selling illusions. There really isn't anything that can be done. As the rip off people say. "Copy right laws end at the border".

Ray Noble


Not true. Any country that is a member of the Bournes Convention (and other similar treaties) has pledged to respect (and prosecute) copyright violations under the guidelines of the COUNTRY THAT ISSUED THE COPYRIGHT. This means that German violators of US copyrights are subject to litigation and/or prosecution under US laws.

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
Magical Dimensions
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It isn't any good to have treaties. As you can see nothing happens to the guys that make rip off illusions. Ask any of them and they will tell you, "Who cares about copy rights, this isn't the U.S.A" I have been told this a few times by magicains / builders.

Ray Noble
Thomas Wayne
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Quote:
On 2002-11-02 07:07, Magical Dimensions wrote:
It isn't any good to have treaties. As you can see nothing happens to the guys that make rip off illusions. Ask any of them and they will tell you, "Who cares about copy rights, this isn't the U.S.A" I have been told this a few times by magicains / builders.

Ray Noble


As with any law, a treaty is only as good as the willingness of the righteous to enforce it.

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
Kendrix
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TW/Erdnase (private joke). The US can't even get Germany to help with ridding the world of terrorists like Saddham Hussein. This despite millions of dollars in foreign aid and essentially rebuilding a country. I have my doubts it would ever help to protect a US citizen's copyright or intellectual property. I think it is very sad, but true.
Thomas Wayne
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Kendrix, my friend, let me clue ya...

If any of these products are imported into the United States, and they are violations of registerd copyrights, the civil AND criminal penalties are HUGE. For each violation, the importer can face a MINIMUM $25,000 fine and a year in prison. The actual penalty can go as high as $250,000 and 10 years in prison, at the court's discretion.

Each single sale is viewed as a separate violation and the US Customs violation buck stops with the importer. So let's say a nefarious dealer named "Lank Hee" (hypotheically) imports 200 units of a product that is a counterfeit of a US product [which is protected by a registered copyright]. "Lank Hee" could be facing millions in fines and many years in prison. These laws have real teeth and anyone who bothers to protect their creations can use those teeth to their advantage; I certainly have.

You'd better believe that if a US importer is facing fines and jail time for importing illegal products from a German company, the German company is going to be facing some international litigation. You know, you start levying tens of thousnad of dollars in fines and a few years in the clink and people start to pay attention.

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
Magical Dimensions
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Mr. Thomas Wayne
I agree with everthing that you have said. As long as there are people who support the rip off builders then there isn't much that can be done. It isn't right, but then again who ever said life was fair?

Ray Noble
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