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The Magic Cafe Forum Index Ľ Ľ Food for thought Ľ Ľ A predicament (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Margarette
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Special user
Memphis area
956 Posts

Profile of Margarette
I have a rather unusual situation and donít quite know how to deal with it. Just a brief bit of background information...for the past three and a half years, I have been putting together a show on the History of and Respect for the American Flag.



I have been performing this particular show since July. It seems like since September 11, everyone is wanting to add patriotic stuff to their shows...and everyone who knows about this show has been peppering me for advice on how to do this.



Well, I donít know exactly what to tell them. I mean, I spent many months doing research for this act. I also have a different handling on a lot of patriotic magic out there.



For one, I refuse to do MisMade Flag (long story, donít go there, at least not on this board). I have also become very protective of my Flag material. I mean, I will be glad to assist them in working out their own routines, but what could I say to them when they ask what I do?



Letís face it...we know when it comes to ethics, some magicians have none. I guess I just donít want to risk someone stealing my stuff after I put in so much time and effort into it. I also donít like the idea that some are capitalizing on the tragedy (not all, but some).



So, Iíd like to help people with their patriotic magic, but what could I say so I wouldnít give away any of my stuff?
The only stupid question is the one not asked.
John Zander
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Loyal user
Downey, CA
247 Posts

Profile of John Zander
The only way to totally protect your material is to never perform it. Other than that, some may take it. That is just the way it is for magicians. It happens all the time. You can politely ask that others do not perform your material. There is nothing wrong with that.



You should also ask yourself "how original is the material?" Some most likely came from other routines, from other magicians. Very few routines and methods are 100% original.



I think that it is great to help others with their routines. Just let them know from the start that there are some things that you are going to keep for yourself. Be honest, and you will be respected for it.
Thank you,



John Zander







***************************

The Award Winning

Comedy Magic of

John Zander

http://www.ZanderMagic.com

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Steve Brooks
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Founder / Manager
Northern California - United States
4741 Posts

Profile of Steve Brooks
I agree with John here, there is only so much you can really protect. Like a locksmith once told me;"Locks only keep an honest man honest".



If I were in you're shoes, I would probably tell them where the best places to find props might be (flags,silks,etc), and then maybe recommend books they might study to give them some possible ideas.



That way, you are honestly helping them, yet not giving away all your good stuff. Just a few thoughts. And by the way, nice to see you on the cafe again! Smile
"Always be you because nobody else can" - Steve Brooks
Tom Cutts
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Staff
Northern CA
5798 Posts

Profile of Tom Cutts
Boy, it sure is amazing how some people feel free to "use" everything they see. It is a shame when a performer spends years on a routine creating every exacting element and then in steps Joe Zauberer (that's German for magician) who lifts the concept, figures a way to do it with a clumsy gaff (weakening the effect in the process) and then decides to market the routine without ever discussing his intentions with the originator.



So begins the dance of "ethics".



Smile Tom Cutts Smile
Michael Peterson
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Inner circle
is where I'm trapped, because of my
4071 Posts

Profile of Michael Peterson
This reminds me of a guy Steve & I met at a convention. He asked us if we knew anything about a control he showed us,we later saw him again & he had found out that it was a Larry Jennings move.He then told us that he was renaming it & calling it his own.



I believe in getting inspiration & ideas from people, but stealing is stealing.I myself acknowledge the creators of whatever I do. Even if I think it's original, I will assume that someone else thought of it.

Smile have a nice day!
Margarette
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Special user
Memphis area
956 Posts

Profile of Margarette
About my American Flag Show. Well, as for originality, yes, I will admit to using change bags, mirror boxes, and other production/vanish props.



However, I have made, yes, made, all of my own Flags with the exception of two Flags I had already purchased before September 11.



I do understand that every time I do this show, I run the risk of magicians using some of the stuff I have come up with. This show is geared to be a teaching show for children, and an honor to veterans for adults. The show teaches the history of and respect for the American Flag.



What I am running into is these magicians are wanting to be patriotic, but not respectful of the Flag. Yes, there is a difference, in my opinion. They canít understand why I refuse to give them advice on routines for mismade flag. I donít know how many debates I have gotten into with fellow magicians on why I refuse to do mismade flag.



My show teaches respect for the Flag. I go through many painstaking efforts to make sure the Flags are loaded properly and are handled properly throughout the show.



Before September 11, I was viewed by many people to be a radical in my views on the Flag. Now, everyone has purchased all of this neat Flag stuff and they want to know how to put it into a routine.
The only stupid question is the one not asked.
Tom Cutts
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Staff
Northern CA
5798 Posts

Profile of Tom Cutts
Avoid the discussion by telling them the truth..."You believe Mismade Flag is disrespectful to the flag and nothing they say will change that."



If they are pushy about it after that, let them know they are free to be as disrespectful as they want. Smile



Tom Cutts
Scott F. Guinn
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Inner circle
"Great Scott!" aka "Palms of Putty" & "Poof Daddy G"
6583 Posts

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I can only tell you what I would do in your situation. I would look them in the eye and say, "No offense, but i've spent a great deal of time and effort putting this show together, and I'd really rather not have other magicians in town doing the same material. You would be better served to come up with your own premise and put together your own show. This one is mine."



It may offend some, and others will steal parts anyway, but for the most part, I think you'll find most will be cool with that and respect it.
"Love God, laugh more, spend more time with the ones you love, play with children, do good to those in need, and eat more ice cream. There is more to life than magic tricks." - Scott F. Guinn
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vovin
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Veteran user
Columbus,Oh
338 Posts

Profile of vovin
What's your problem every magician has his own secrets, just because somone asks you questions magician or not you don't have to reveal your material to noone. I think you need to be a little more firm.
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