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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Right or Wrong? » » Exposure in magic books aimed at laypeople (7 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Jonathan Townsend
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Sponge, the same is true of the Hoffmann books and the Mark Wilson course.

Quote:
no, who cares about magic stores. only book sales.


Yes, I suppose there might be a universe in which that concern makes sense.

Quote:
On 2010-05-05 14:23, Bill Palmer wrote:... All of the magic organizations have a minimum retail price for books that teach magic secrets. I believe the current MSRP for a book of this type is $10.00....


So it's only exposure when it gets remaindered for 3.99 or goes up for bid on ebay and goes for 1.99?

Bill, are you now or have you even been a member of a magical organization whose members did not understand the specious nature of that "rule" about price?

Charlie McCarthy asks "who's the dummy". Smile

Posted: May 5, 2010 8:15pm
Anyone here doing any of the material offered here:

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?u......&x=0&y=0

or here:

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?u......&x=0&y=0

hmmmm?

over to you sponge.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
the Sponge
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Quote:
On 2010-05-05 20:15, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Anyone here doing any of the material offered here:

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?u......&x=0&y=0

or here:

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?u......&x=0&y=0

hmmmm?

over to you sponge.


over to me? I didn't start the thread. nor have I spoken against selling books in bookstores. I only question the choice of effects. and what is the point of your links? Just more examples of the same thing.

s

Quote:
On 2010-05-05 19:49, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Quote:
no, who cares about magic stores. only book sales.


Yes, I suppose there might be a universe in which that concern makes sense.


are you trying to tell me the authors/publishers don't care about book sales?!
truthteller
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Edh, Is your position that any sales or publication of magical principles is exposure? I have no problem with that - other than the pragmatic one's presented. One, where WOULD magicians learn? (I am reminded of the Curb episode when the kid wouldn't explain his trick because Larry was not a magician. Larry then tried to establish what made the kid a magician. Was it just knowing one trick? but I digress). What would allow one person to access one book and not another? who would be that arbiter? And if that arbiter stood to make money off of supplying books, why would he want to restrict sales?

I guess what I am asking is - how would your system play out in the real world?

Sponge - Personally, I think the prop issue is a line. I have taught magic for over 20 years and I will only teach material that, given the time and resources available (and the ability/experience of the student), I can insure their empowerment and understanding of said material.

For example, I would never explain how the sawing was done because they don't have the stuff to do it. BUT if someone ever came to me with the props, I would have no issue helping them.

Likewise, I tend to avoid key card tricks because I think that is a powerful principle that many students fail to be able to grasp. Sure it's easy, and yes they can do it, but to me it is almost pornographic (in the most literal sense) - it fails to transcend the THING.

Unless I had invisible decks for everyone I would not teach it. But if I DID have invisible decks for everyone, I don't know if I would have an issue with teaching it. (Not sure yet.)

Because ultimately I see no difference between that and someone walking into a mall and buying one from magic masters or off of a rack in a fantasma kit. (I do think the issues of books and magic trick sales are part and parcel of each other.)

But I would want to know more about is why you feel we should start beginners with anything less than the best material. I have argued this with many people (many who sell dvds to magicians.) There position usually goes something like:

Just because we had to wade through the crap, why should we make others?

To come back to edh's point, does working through the crap lead to better magicians? Would magic be a better place without those books that greatly advanced the quality of material being presented either to the public or to other magicians?

If you gave people more knowledge and better tools, shouldn't THAT lead to greater advancement and not more competition with mimes?

why not?

And again, who judges when the student is ready?

According to this worldview, everything Ellusionist did was essentially exposure.

Would you agree?
Bill Palmer
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Jonathan:

I know of several people who are members of IBM and SAM who teach classes at various schools in the Houston area and the Austin area. Other than that, I can't list any. The ones I know in Houston charge fees to the individual students who attend the class. They are not large fees, but the students know how to keep stumm, and they take pride in their work. Nobody who is in the classes comes in without a genuine interest in magic. It's not just kids who download stuff from the internet or watch DVD's. Some of these kids have gone on to do professional performing.

As far as my membership in groups that set a minimum price for published work that goes out through "open" bookstores, I'm a member of IBM, SAM and the Magic Circle of London. You know that.

The Magic Circle of London has traditionally been the most assiduous in administering punishment to its members when they violate the minimum price rule, even if it is after the fact. When the Bell Book of Magic came out, it was published at a price that was lower than the allowable rate. Patrick Page was the author. They booted him out of the club for a year. He didn't complain, even though he had every right to. The problem was that Bell was not the company Patrick signed the contract with. It was to be published by another company that went bankrupt. Bell purchased the manuscript and published it for a very low price over Patrick's objections.

The fact is that ANYONE can purchase ANY magic book that he wants. Do any of you remember William Poundstone's books? He exposed the Don Wayne floating ball, the Statue of Liberty vanish and a host of other proprietary magic effects. How did he do this? He bought the floating ball from a magic store. He got the info for the Statue of Liberty from someone who worked for Copperfield. How much permanent damage did he do? None.

You also know that I have a very low opinion of people who gratuitously expose magic. In fact, I was in the trenches against the Masked Magician when the rest of you guys were just whining, piffing and moaning. I was the first person who revealed exactly who the Masked Magician was on the internet. I had Valentino's picture up three days after the first Masked Magician broadcast. Right before the second one, Fox News called me to find out if I was afraid of being sued. I told them that I wasn't because I new I was right. I won't tell you how I knew. I did my due diligence, that's all.

My last "battle" was the one against the Pendragons when they were supporting the exposure that took place at the Ouatagamie County Museum. I sent an e-mail to the Magic Circle. The Circle refused to do anything about it. Ali Bongo told me later what actually happened.

Because I agreed to abide by the Circle's decision, I will not tell anyone what Bongo told me.

However, I smiled when I read about Claude Douglas Yarborough's incarceration. The Karmic wheel is just.

As far as what happens when a book is remaindered -- well, that's the breaks. You can't punish a person for that or for the sales of used copies of a book.

BTW, this book by Joshua Jay has not lowered my opinion of him in the least.
"The Swatter"

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Dan Bernier
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Exposure? What about over exposure? Smile We hear so much about what people think exposure is, but what about over exposure?

There is sooo much magic stuff being marketed these days, and 75-80% of it is crap. I know, because I pretty much buy everything that gets marketed. Not everything, but almost.(lol)

However, most of it isn't directly marketed to workers, but to hobbyist and the curious minded. I don't think the people marketing the products really care who buys it, just as long as they make money. They keep pushing new products onto the market as fast as they can. While treading the line of ethics with misleading advertisments, and deceptive demo's. When you find out you've ben duped, it's too late, they already have your money. Now, that's real magic folks. (lol)

This is especially true when a magician/creator comes out with a very good trick. It receives great reviews so they pump out more while the plate is hot. Truth is though, they end up marketing crap and hope to cash in from the popularity of their first trick. Smile The magic of marketing. Smile

Oh, and don't you love it when you hear, "He's contributing to the magic community by revealing one of his secrets that he has been performing for years." Sorry, but the real contributor's to the magic community are those who buy magic products, not those who sell them.

Everyone wants to be a creator now. Forget about actually working for a living, or booking shows. Just sit around, hang with other guys who know magic, and come up with lame stuff that when marketed properly can pay the rent, and have some fun money left over. Smile


Who cares about exposure when over exposure is doing the real damage. Well...it's damaging to me, to my wallet anyways.(lol)

The only exposure we should worry about is the indecent kind!
"If you're going to walk in the rain, don't complain about getting wet!"
the Sponge
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Quote:
On 2010-05-05 23:29, truthteller wrote:

Sponge - Personally, I think the prop issue is a line...

But I would want to know more about is why you feel we should start beginners with anything less than the best material.

To come back to edh's point, does working through the crap lead to better magicians? Would magic be a better place without those books that greatly advanced the quality of material being presented either to the public or to other magicians?

If you gave people more knowledge and better tools, shouldn't THAT lead to greater advancement and not more competition with mimes?


Now, this is a great post! very clear, relevant, gives reasons, and asks great questions that must be addressed.

I don't disagree with any of it.

I guess I just don't buy the argument that newer effects/magician marketed effects are needed to inspire new, young magicians. Some of the "standard public domain effects in lay books and kits" are/can be amazing. Ones that aren't the best may inspire the person to try to improve it in some way. I imagine many effects were created/improved this way. If someone is really interested, in today's world it is easy to find high quality material.

I did go to the bookstore and skim through the book. I think it really is a very nice book. There are things I wish/don't think really should be in there. Just new formatting/packaging of the old chestnuts make them interesting/enticing (I think) To be fair, the book wasn't just Jay. There are several prominent magicians who contributed their effects. Therefore, they must feel that it is okay to put these tricks in a "beginner's" book.

I enjoy the mental exercise of a real discussion, but in the end, nothing will change, and these books in lay bookstores don't really hurt magic for very long/much.

s
Bill Palmer
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I used to be a member of VIPS -- Volunteers In Public Schools. My presentations were intended to explain to the kids what they would have to learn in order to be magicians. I didn't expose or teach anything. I did a few pieces and then told them where to go to learn them. They had to dig them up.

The most heartwarming of these appearances was for a class of children who had been diagnosed as having learning disabilities. I have written this up in the second through last posts in this thread:
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......m=171&10

I wrote a lot about exposure vs. teaching in this thread:
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......um=171&0

BTW, although we don't have a permanent "ethics committee" at any of our local (Houston) magic clubs, I'm one of the people who gets consulted when our members are planning to do a television appearance. Normally, the host will tell them that they want to be taught a trick.

I usually recommend that if they MUST teach them anything, they do the torn and restored napkin with the cod explanation. But I emphasize that they will be much better representatives of magicians if they do not teach them anything at all. In fact, the new president of our local assembly was on television last week. The hostess asked him, "So, what trick are you going to teach me?"

He answered, "I've only been the president of our assembly for a few months. If I teach you a trick on television, I am sure that I will be impeached." He smiled when he said it. The audience and the hostess laughed, and he got out completely unscathed.
"The Swatter"

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Erdnase27
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If you say you're a mentalist here, you're a loser who claims paranormal abilities.
If you say you're a magician around here, you're a loser doing 100 times exposed tricks.

Everything is a trick that has been debunked around here, heck now there is this guy on television exposing marketed mentalism effects.

Thanks community, for spreading the secrets of magicians across the globe. Invisible deck? a no no for me (been called 300 times on it, they've seen it on television), Doing PK touches, I got it out of my act (been exposed on national Television). Do we really need a book that lays on a shelf in every bookstore?

Mentalism and magic is indeed DEAD around here, just like Dr. Eamon said. From 16 year old kids, explaining tricks to other people, to people of every age explaining mentalism effects (marketed) because mentalists are supposed "conmen" who should be debunked...

I don't mind making magic books, but take great care to whom you might sell. I know that laymen can buy magic books in a magic shop, but at least he/she would be interested. That is not to say from the books lying in normal bookshops, exposure on national TV, etc.

Well... it's not that bad. I mostly choose for whom I perform nowadays. that's the point of magic right?
"He must be content to rank with the common herd." - S.W. Erdnase
Pakar Ilusi
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Michael, that's just sad what's happening there in your neck of the woods...

Just keep on keeping on I guess.

All the best...
"Dreams aren't a matter of Chance but a matter of Choice." -DC-
epoptika
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Quote:
On 2010-05-04 19:44, Starrpower wrote:
Quote:
On 2010-05-04 13:54, epoptika wrote:

"Little Shot"? Wow, you've really hurt my feelings now.

I think some of you guys are way too obsessed about your "secrets". Perhaps you ought to spend more time working on your presentation skills.


The "little shot" was in jest; I was not intending to offend you (if I did, it's an added bonus!)



Smile

I think Bill hit the nail on the head - very few people read anymore anyhow so there is nothing to fear! Talk to any magic dealer and they will all tell you the same thing - young people have no interest in books. So I guess only the old farts will bust you on your Super-X, invisible decks or folding coins. Stick with kid shows.

Posted: May 6, 2010 4:01pm
Hey, how come you guys keep picking on mimes? They have feelings too you know!
Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
On 2010-05-06 00:11, Gospel Dan wrote:...
The only exposure we should worry about is the indecent kind!


You mean exposure that diminishes sales in magic shops, right?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
edh
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Jonathon, right!!

I have completely given up on the idea of exposure. Heck if it's good enough for the big boys to do it's good enough for me.

I really could not care anymore as to what constitutes exposure. The names will defend it as long as it is econonicaly feasable for them. And if it's not they will rant and rave against it.

So as far as I'm concerned I don't care anymore.

Have at it!
Magic is a vanishing art.
Rory Diamond
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Hey Bill Palmer: if you were a member of WAM, and you knew Mark Wilson's book exposed Super X, why didn't you bring this up to WAM and do anything about it? ???????????
rklew64
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You all think books are a problem.
HELLOOOO - YouTube!!, Google, Magic sets sold at Sam's. Magic "Apps" for smartphones - CMON. Laymen will not spend $20 on some fricken magic book. I'm pretty sure more layfolks buy Chilton's manuals.
Discussion is good but it won't change a thing. Take a trip to Costco and pick up that box of bicycle cards for $9 and change + tax. - have a hotdog and start wearing boxers.
Good day
Starrpower
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Quote:
On 2010-05-05 18:08, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
But Starrpower, that would leave us all having to ask you each time we wanted to know. And what if you are busy at that moment we need some help? Can't we have something we can use ahead of time to avoid getting into that situation of having to call you at odd hours?


How about don't throw stones if you live in a glass house?

I have little concern about exposure, but I do find people who have double-standards about exposure lack credibility. Just because one can do a few tricks well doesn't mean they make sense in any other area of magic.
arizona
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Im totally against exposure of the TT. If it's included in a magic kit its ok because it usually is of a cheap quality and not taken seriously thinking that it's not gonna fool. Its probably also going to someone with a geniune interest in magic. Others I'm totally against for exposing is "forcing", shells and billet S*******/center t****. G******* cards as well. I can't believe someone with such a passion for the art would expose some of the more powerfull stuff especially Invisible Deck and the TT in a magic book for the public. TnR effects should not be out there as well it may seem obvious but it really is not. I was doing TnR effects I came up with on my own in elementary school using gum wrappers and napkins and still I thought there was a better different method used when I first was gonna learn it. Also you pretty much have to know the correct name of the trick first before coming across the method on youtube.


Someone also mentioned that anybodys pretty much welcome to buy stuff at magic shops and internet which is true but laypeople really don't know that and think that the magic the public have access to is usually not the "real" magic that pro's use. Theres a magic shop here in the Phoenix area that is old school in that the owner doesn't really have secrets on display like I seen at other places like shells and f****** coins labeled making it pretty much exposure on display lol. When people usually enter his shop he asks "if he can help them" and from the answer will usually know what to market. If an uninitiated person has an interest in wanting to start out he'll start them off with the basics. Don't I wish it was like that with all the shops everywhere.
Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
...buy stuff at magic shops and internet which is true but laypeople really don't know that and think that...


so you know what others think... guess you must be a magician.

Real people know how to find and download stuff for free.
From what I've been told they pile it up like trading cards and watch the videos like porn. So your local dealer puts his "good stuff" in opaque baggies with names rather than let the customer see the goods? Hmmm. Okay LOL.

Initiated? You mean like fooled by kids in class and then told by someone's older brother that there are things called magic shops?

Quote:
On 2010-05-02 18:18, Rory Diamond wrote:
... I am astounded to see that the book contains so many tricks regarded as "trade secrets" to working magicians...


Rory, do you know what a trade secret is?
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Starrpower
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I think he does. We are in a trade -- magic -- and we deal in secrets. It's not that hard to figure out.

Now if you are gonna split hairs over linguistics when we all know what he means, you are obfuscating the point and not adding to the conversation.
Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
On 2010-05-02 18:31, edh wrote:
It all depends on who is doing the exposing as to whether or not they get hammered by their colleagues.


The response of those who sell such is not the same as the response of those who create such for their own use.

Quote:
On 2010-05-08 13:04, Starrpower wrote:
I think he does. We are in a trade -- magic -- and we deal in secrets. It's not that hard to figure out.

Now if you are gonna split hairs over linguistics when we all know what...


That was funny. It's a legal term. Putting a legal term in scare quotes just makes the rest of the argument and ensuing discussion more "amusing".

Quote:
On 2010-05-08 13:04, Starrpower wrote:
I think he does. ...


I'm far from hypnotized into believing you are a competent mind reader.

IMHO if the OP had a clue what a trade secret is we'd be discussing the agreement - legal or not, binding or not - which governs the use of that data being propagated in ways which might be harming our craft.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
arizona
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Quote:
On 2010-05-08 00:10, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Quote:
...buy stuff at magic shops and internet which is true but laypeople really don't know that and think that...


so you know what others think... guess you must be a magician.

Real people know how to find and download stuff for free.
From what I've been told they pile it up like trading cards and watch the videos like porn. So your local dealer puts his "good stuff" in opaque baggies with names rather than let the customer see the goods? Hmmm. Okay LOL.

Initiated? You mean like fooled by kids in class and then told by someone's older brother that there are things called magic shops?

I didn't say I was a mind reader. Just that I know to this day "real" people like grown ups, teenagers and also others wanting to learn magic, are askin how to become a magician and and askin where I learned the secrets from. I'm pretty sure these "real" people know about magic shops and that you can find most anything on the internet. I've had only one person get back at me who learned a finger break and cutting to the top to do a pinky card rise. I forgot what card trick it was I showed them but couldn't find the exposure to that because they didn't know the name of the trick.

I'm pretty sure most dealers have their products in some sort of packaging that hides the trick like Svengalis, stripper decks, raven, coins in packaging with card inserted to hide the gimmick, 3 cups and 3 balls, magician ropes with no instructions..


Okay you got me with the initiated/unintiated only because I really don't find a reason to respond to a comment by someone who's desperate for attention they obviously havent gotten after twenty two thousand posts.
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