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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Ethics, again (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Magnus Eisengrim
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Sulla placed heads on
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Consider the following example. I use a particular trick for the purpose of clarity, but the same question could be raised about many others.

I have never bought Gary Freed's NFW. After having seen it performed, I believe that I can reproduce the effect. Whether my method is the same as Freed's, I have no clue. Is it acceptable (to the magical community) to perform my version of the trick without ever paying a cent for the real thing?

John
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.--Yeats
Frank Tougas
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I'll no doubt catch the proverbial "heck" for this but here's my two centavos. I say perform it, it is done soley by your own skill and you "ain't beholdin' to anyone". That having been said, NO you cannot write it up and sell it as yours, and NO you cannot say you are performing NFW. Make sense?

Frank Tougas
Frank Tougas The Twin Cities Most "Kid Experienced" Children's Performer :"Creating Positive Memories...One Smile at a Time"
Peter Marucci
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I don't know about John (who asked the question), but it makes sense to me and I agree.
If you use your own intelligence to come up with a way of doing comething, then it's yours.
Of course, the very fact that you wouldn't have come up with ANY way of doing it unless you heard about it in the first place is addressed by the rest of Frank's post.
acmp
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Go ahead and do it!

I think it would be interesting though if you showed someone who has NFW what you do so they can confirm/whatever if the methods are the same/similar/different. I guess that if the method is different, albeit with a similar effect, then you should publish it or work on it so that others may build/adapt/advance through it.

I'll probably get flamed for that, ho hum
acmp<><

"Well if I had one wish in this god forsaken world, kids
It'd be that your mistakes would be your own"
Felix Cardician
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"I guess that if the method is different, albeit with a similar effect, then you should publish it"

Not if the method is worse/more difficult than the original one, which I doubt can get anymore simplier/easier than what it is.
acmp
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>Not if the method is worse/more difficult

This is subjectivem, though I get your point. Though I do disagree. Even if the method is more involved then it may offer other effects and still be worth it. Though this is all speculation as we have little idea as to what is going on.
acmp<><

"Well if I had one wish in this god forsaken world, kids
It'd be that your mistakes would be your own"
Frank Tougas
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ACMP, To set your mind at ease. This message board is run like no other and while a comment may result in people who disagree with your point of view, flames and flaming are not done here. Magic Café believes in good open and honest discussion, even a controversy here and there, but flaming is not only discouraged but handled by the very competent staff. So speak your mind and I apologize if my "heck" remark may have misled you.

Sincerely
Frank Tougas
Frank Tougas The Twin Cities Most "Kid Experienced" Children's Performer :"Creating Positive Memories...One Smile at a Time"
acmp
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Absolutely no offense taken at all.

I keep coming back to this forum because it's interesting and intelligent, a rare thing on the interent.

My 'may get flamed' comment was more of an invitation to comment than any paronia.

<bit OT>
I have read a few threads here recently on ethics and they usually end up with strong differing views being presented, the result seems to be that the parties involved will back in to their own corner and put up the defences to the point that they cannot see what the other is trying to say. With this in mind I feel that a 'bridging role' is necessary, where both sides of the discussion are considered and then posted in an unbiased manner.
</bit OT>

I enjoy discussion and rarely take offense at posts. Though I can't stand those who simply try to belittle or hate others.

FWIW, and this is just a friendly comment, I prefer acmp to be in lower case ;-)
There's no need to apologise. It's not cast in stone.

P.S. I like your tag, 'Creating Positive Memories...One Smile at a Time'
acmp<><

"Well if I had one wish in this god forsaken world, kids
It'd be that your mistakes would be your own"
Magnus Eisengrim
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Thank you all. As for NFW, I like the trick, and I am working largely out of curiosity. It's an inexpensive packet trick, so money really isn't the issue. Would anyone's answer change for more expensive effects? What about "signature tricks"?

For the record, I'm not so much building a routine as I am trying to find out about the community.

John
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.--Yeats
acmp
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If you have seen the effect and are using your own skills to produce a similar effect without knowledge of the original routine then I guess you have made your own trick that looks the same.

If you are asked about it and say, 'I saw so-and-so perform it and I liked it so I worked out this method for doing it' then I really don't see how anyone could complain.

What you have done may be an improvement on the 'original' or even a totally new approach that may it's self be used by others for different effects. Or you may just have used the exact same method. In the end I guess it's 'credit where credit is due'.

I've seen several 'self levitation' methods. Some are impromptu, some require the most complicated props. But they all share the same effect, the method is different. If we prevented people from seeing a trick then working it out for themselves we may have missed out of some really good methods.

Those who have the creative spark should be encouraged. Every day IS a school day
acmp<><

"Well if I had one wish in this god forsaken world, kids
It'd be that your mistakes would be your own"
zur
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I would say even though you can figure out NFW, its better if you buy the effect because there are some pointers and tips in the manual.
Jaxon
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Take for example my modification of Fearsons Floatation. I picked it up years ago when it first came out. Performed it over the years and came up with many variations. It got to the point where Steve Fearson himself said I was more knowledgeable then he was on it. He said that back when he had his message board and it was after he came up with the box so I'm sure he focused more on that.

Anyway, after all that time I came up with a modification that completely changed the effect to what I felt was better. Then I tried for months to contact him about it. I finally did and got the permission to make mine available.

Bringing this back to the topic here. I performed mine for a long time before I even attempted to contact the originator "that inspired this version". I didn't sell it or even consider making it available for a long time, yet I was performing it in my shows.

So for private use I see nothing wrong with it. Just don't sell it if it's exactly the same as the other. That's a big issue too. Making sure it's not the same. If it's an improvement then maybe let the originator know about it. I know I like to see when someone improves something of mine.

Ron Jaxon
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After regaining my ability to hear after 20 years of deafness. I learned that there is magic all around you. The simplest sounds that amazed me you probably ignore. Look and listen around you right now. You'll find something you didn't notice before.
JarrodHenry
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Personally, I look back at the history of magic, books like RRtCM , Encyclopedia of Card Tricks, Bobo's MCM, etc. Many of the tricks in there are repeated now adays by other names. Color switching backs like Nemesis.. Torn and Restored like Fusion. (It seems to be a modern thing to do the signed card.. it could have easily been done then had they the ever useful sharpie Smile ) The point is, there are very few tricks nowadays that aren't based on old tricks.

So .. the moral should be this. If you enhance an experience of an illusion by your own design, you should be able to market that newer, better illusion. You should also give credit where its due for your influences.

People were sticking cards on ceilings, tearing and restoring cards, and doing modified half passes long before the modern masters of those arts. THey modified past effects. Insisting new magicians shouldn't be allowed to do the same will be the death of magic.
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