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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » Promotion and Paedophilia (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Tony James
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Cheshire UK
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Sorry - this topic won't go away. It's flavour of the decade.

What steps do you find you need to take in your promotion of your show to take account of Paedophilia concerns?
Tony James

Still A Child At Heart
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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Other than placing a note on a web page, nothing. No one has ever asked me about it.

At this time, I am proud to have it but unsure of it's promotional potential.
Dennis Michael
kimmo
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Sheffield
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Back in 2002 I received a number of complaints that my website featured 'images of children'. They were standard audience shots plus a few pictures of children for whom I had peformed at birthday parties. All pictures were used with permission and obviously no names and addresses were printed. Since then all the pictures on my website have been of puppets.
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Tony James
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Not so much it's potenial Dennis but more about the precautions you may need to consider.

Hello Kimmo. We arrived together I see. spot on the same time. Now what's the chances of that I wonder?

Pictures in your brochure. Pictures on your website. It's been a problem here for a while hasn't it? I used a brochure for years and one of the shots was a cracker.

Takem from the right, low down and near to my right side and looking into and across the children who were sat cross legged as they do. All the various expressions were there. Mainly delight, some with slight wonderment, one looked slightly uncertain while the one next door was grinning. Nice balance of boys and girls.

They were straight from school I remember. You don't often get that. They normally go home and change. So they were in school uniform. Doesn't date like fashion clothes.

Out of the blue someone rang me to complain about the brochure. She said you could see a girl's knickers. She was right too. Cross legged and somewhere in the shadows there was a hint of white. I'd never noticed it and neither had anyone else. I smoothed the woman over. Crank I thought and forgot about it.

After that I had a number of unrealetd people pointing it out, including a school that had had it for years and never noticed. In the schools case what they actually noticed first was the presence of children. Unwise to show children Why for goodness sake?

Now I know that people like us are a prime target for odd people looking for pictures of children, any children it appears, and in any state of dress.

No one could tell me how my brochure was likely to fall into the hands of such an odd person and I didn't enquire what he or she would do with it. Oh yes - women are just as likely to be as strange as men we are now told. Never assume.

Are you sensitive to this in America?
Tony James

Still A Child At Heart
todsky
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This seems to be a problem in former empires and soon-to-be former empires.
On my website, I simply have in large bold letters: NEVER CONVICTED.
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JesterMan
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The land south of Todsky's is a bit conservative, too. I have not heard of any complaints about photos of fully dressed children, but it could happen. I should think that a little Photoshop touch-up of the photo showing a bit of white could fix that problem, except for those that are so scared of any photos of kids being posted. Even having been a therapist, and having worked with children abused in any manner you can imagine (or even in ways I hope you can't), I find the idea of complaining about fully clothed children's photos as a bit overboard.

JesterMan
JM Smile Smile

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rossmacrae
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Arlington, Virginia
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Quote:
What steps do you find you need to take in your promotion of your show to take account of Paedophilia concerns?


You could include (not POINT TO as in "here's why I'm not a kiddie-diddler" but just include) mentions of your happy school clients, experience with young audiences, praise from parents. I'm, sure you'll see how unwise it would be to bring up the topic: "Click here to see how I'm not likely to molest your kid." It would just draw attention to how much it's on your mind.

"I find the idea of complaining about fully clothed children's photos as a bit overboard"

Me, too, but when dealing with large numbers of the public, you're bound to be seen by a few crazies. Or maybe they're former victims who are hyper-sensitive and see evil where the average person would never even think about it.
kimmo
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I found it bizarre that anyone could find pictures of children just enjoying themselves at a party or school offensive, but I was told by the head of a school I'd been booked to perform at that the subject had been brought up at a P.T.A. meeting and that members had been concerned about the photos. They were perfectly standard audience shots of happy, laughing children. I re-designed the site the next day.
VISIT MY ONLINE STORE!: www.kimmomagicshop.com
NEW LECTURE NOTES - SHOW US YOUR TRIX NOW AVAILABLE AS AN INSTANT DIGITAL DOWNLOAD!

Kimmo DVD available Now!
Watch the promo here!
Order your copy NOW! CLICK HERE!

ENTERTAINER,MAGICIAN AND VENTRILOQUIST'S BLOG - DON'T READ THIS...
Tony James
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Cheshire UK
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Over here it is common practise at schools NOT to permit even the parents from taking pictures of anything, anytime at school.

Christmas Nativity Plays for 5 year olds, sports days and the like.

But as you say Kimmo, what on earth is wrong with fully dressed children?

Now if the children were undressed that's quite different. On a beach for example you would find it hard to take a picture of a Punch & Judy showing a good big audience without there being almost naked children there.

That would have been considered quite natural, normal and acceptable a few years ago.

Today only a complete and utter fool would use pictures of undressed children although I would think partly undressed children showing flesh would be considered even more provocotive and arousing.

Actually, have you noticed Kimmo over here these last couple of years the fashion for bare midriffs, very low slung trousers and high tank tops? The fashion's spread to children.

I'm talking about 7 -9 year olds, not those in their teens.

No professional entertainer would dream of using pictures like that. Yet just before Christmas I received pictures from a parent whose party I'd done and there they were - half undressed children of 7 showing lots of bare flesh. They hoped I could use them!

I deleted them straight away. And wrote and said thank you. Next time the fashion may have changed and I might get some I can use.

Would you folks have done the same or is the climate in America and Australia and elsewhere such that pictures of partly dressed children are still acceptable?
Tony James

Still A Child At Heart
todsky
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In Canada, it's probably different depending on where you go. Here in Montreal, because of the Quebecois culture, it is a bit more open about sexuality in general. In Toronto, it is probably more uptight.
So you have teenage pop singers on MTV dressing like skanks, and of course the little girls want to emulate them, and then the media starts a panic about child predators, so what is happening is that the media feeds us sexy images and then warns us about being aroused by sexy images, it's all rather confusing, isn't it? I think overall we have become too obsessed with our screens (including this %&*^$! computer screen!), and maybe it is time as a society to indulge another one of our senses aside from our overly used and abused visual sense. I vote for smell. My eyes are soooooo tired. Sniff sniff...
Todsky's Magic Shop: over 15,000 tricks, books, DVD s and Card decks. www.magicstore.ca
Tony James
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Todsky

Surely even in the more relaxed attitude to sex in Montreal you wouldn't find entertainers putting pictures on their websites displaying young girls or boys in what many might consider a state of undress or as you put it 'skanks' - I'm not quite certain what that means. Tarts?

Tarts is used over here to mean a female who knows she is dressing and behaving in a sexually provocative way.

My understanding of the thought behind these concerns is that Paedophilia insticts are excerbated when partly clothed children are clearly seen to be innocent and unaware of anything sexual.

That's why it is considered so dangerous when even the most innocent and natural of images is used. The very type of image which entertainers frequently have used in the past.

Apparantly children's entertainers websites are one of the first ports of call for those seeking images of children for whatever purpose.

Picture libraries have to keep a record of those even enquiring about pictures of children. The police here and in America share information and work togther. Nowadays they have search programmes that automatically find sites containing pictures of children and certain types of site eg children's entertainers are logged.

It's horrendously Big Brother and it's not getting any less. Just the opposite.

Over here we have tens of thousands of CCTV cameras and they are now installing special microphones that pick up from long distances so your conversations can be recorded along with pictures.

Visitors beware - and be quiet.
Tony James

Still A Child At Heart
Al Angello
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Collegeville, Pa. USA
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There isn't a lot you can do. I know everybody is watching me, so I call girls young lady, and boys young man, I also want there to be no question about racial improprieties, and I only ever touch kids on the hands.
Al Angello
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
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todsky
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Tony, it's not THAT relaxed here that entertainers are putting up images of scantily-clad children on their web sites, and I hope it never gets that relaxed. And yes, by skanks I mean tarts. My general rule is to be respectful of people's feelings (children's and adults), even if they sometimes happen to be a bit on the hysterical side. I may disagree, but I try to respect or at least understand where someone is coming from.
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Tony James
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Whilst I'm not doubting what you say, how do you know?

Have you looked at other sites?

Most people look at some to get ideas for style, content and layout and then have there own and - don't bother looking much again. or so I'm told.

So come on. Lets take a look at people's websites. And report back.

Go easy. Don't start naming names and saying rude things. Just take a look. Not difficult. Masses of websites listed in the embers section and they're all in the public domain.

I tell you something. There are some here in the UK that I am uncomfortable with. In spite of sensitivities.
Tony James

Still A Child At Heart
Al Angello
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Eternal Order
Collegeville, Pa. USA
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Tony
My site is full of pictures of kids, and fit for your granny.

Al Angello
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
http://www.juggleral.com
http://home.comcast.net/~juggleral/
"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
todsky
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Tony, I really don't feel like looking at other people's websites right now, it would just bore me, to be honest. I already spend enough time here on the Magic Café staring at this confounded screen! I think I need some fresh air.

For Al, I made the exception: very nice web site, and the children all look kosher to me.
Todsky's Magic Shop: over 15,000 tricks, books, DVD s and Card decks. www.magicstore.ca
Jonathanmc
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Please just look at society at large. Male sexuality in any form, i.e. just being male, has come to be seen as inherently negative. Just look at what happened to the boys on the Duke LaCross team. Not a shred of evidence yet they were guilty prior to even being indicted.

I think there is also an honest question to be asked of any male that puts himself out as a caretaker, performer etc for children. Why would you be doing this? Why not some more adult activity to take up your time? Do you have alterior motives?

Like it or not, this isn't going to get better any time soon. We simply have to take the often large steps needed to over prove that we are good people with good intentions who have a talent for entertainment.
Tony James
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I know it's not getting easier and I also know that parents increasingly are taking children out to venues and not involving themselves in booking 'dodgy' entertainers.

Dodgy can be made to mean many things but I mean 'of unproven quality.'

Most promotion these days is electronic. What kind of content will provide a parent or other booker with the confidence to pick up the phone?

Or do you find they cut the phone and make their approach by email?
Tony James

Still A Child At Heart
rossmacrae
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Arlington, Virginia
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Never email.

What kind of content? I can tell you a hundred ways to help impress people about your quality and value, but no ways to impress people that you aren't a pedophile. You bring it up at all, it casts a shadow you can't elude once it's there.

If you don't want people to think of you as "a dodgy performer," show them your quality and professionalism - they don't care if you can do the most technically challenging sleights, they care that you are aware of their needs and that you satisfy previous customers.

See my web pages
NJJ
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Performers need to be careful about being alone with kids and how they touch them but aside from that, there would be only a very small percentage of performers who have had major troubles because of the this increased vigilence.

Aside from a few tasteless remarks etc. has anyone any had any REAL trouble because of kiddie fiddler hysteria?
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