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 Post subject: Explaining magic morals to a layman or other magician
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 12:05 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 21 Dec 2011
Posts: 144
My main question is how do you explain magic morals to a layman, or for that matter another magician?

I'll give some examples of some scenarios I've gone through lately to be clear.

1. The Kissing Card trick is a viral video put out by local guy here in Salt Lake City. He is not a magician but rather a guy that likes magic and knows a couple tricks. This video just happens to feature Wayne Houchin's effect "French Kiss". He promised that after so many likes he would reveal the secret. I felt like I needed to let him know that this wasn't a very good idea.

My communication went something like this "I saw that you wanted to teach Wayne Houchin's magic trick "French Kiss" on your youtube page. I know you don't mean any harm in sharing but it really isn't your trick. You teaching it on your youtube page would be kind of like Rachel Ray taking a recipe from Paula Dean and showing how to make it on her show without Dean's permission."

2. I recently created a way to make a car disappear. While I haven't seen anyone else use the exact same method I have a hunch that it was discovered by Franz Harrary before me. My friends and family think it's a cool idea and want to film it so that we can promote my show. I feel like we could go film it and send a video to Harrary just to be sure it's original. My freinds don't understand why.

3. Lastly, a local club here had a so called "workshop" that taught how to make and perform Calen Morelli's Dresscode. The kid who suggested it had downloaded the DVD off a torrent site. So about 10 magicians leaned the trick without Calen getting a penny. I wrote a letter to the presidency of this club, all of whom have been in magic for many years and a couple are full time professionals. To my surprise almost nobody had a problem with it!

So here are 3 moral dilemmas with three very different types of people. How do we explain that these things are wrong?


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 Post subject: Re: Explaining magic morals to a layman or other magician
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2013 12:07 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 21 Dec 2011
Posts: 144
Sorry, could a moderator move this to the general forum?


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 Post subject: Re: Explaining magic morals to a layman or other magician
PostPosted: Thu May 02, 2013 1:12 am 
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Penguin

Joined: 23 Feb 2012
Posts: 82
I believe that I speak for the majority of magicians when I say that we've all had this dilemma. In my personal experience, the best way to describe it is to do what you did in the first scenario. That is to say, relate it to another situation. Plagiarism is a concept that everyone understands, and that is a fine analogy to make for most people.
In contrast, it really is only a legal issue if the person revealing the secret is gaining from it financially. So there is only morality standing in the way when you take financial gain out of the equation. The truth is that if a person wishes to reveal another person's secrets, it is his place to do so; only the morality of deed may decide whether or not he chooses to do it.
After so many years, I have learned that people will reveal secrets, people will steal things, and people will never simply stop. Putting a halt to it when you are able is a fine idea, but ending it all is impossible - much like ending violence forever.
So I say do what you can to solve the issue in your own realm of existence, but when something is beyond your control, rise above it by moving forward.


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 Post subject: Re: Explaining magic morals to a layman or other magician
PostPosted: Fri May 03, 2013 6:19 am 
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Joined: 24 Jan 2003
Posts: 4110
Location: Milford OH
Got a problem here. First, I agree that revealing secrets is a really bad thing. Saying that, what we believe is not what everybody else believes. this is not a morality thing like murder. Rather it is an accepted way of theft, just like abortion is an accepted way of ending a fetal life. In short I can not enforce my morals on others but I do refuse to participate in the divulging of secrets. i.e. I was at an I.B.M. ring and the same thing, someone was revealing a secret that he learned off a pirated DVD. I got up and walked out. That's all I could do. Heck in his opening sentence he admitted to pirating the original from a friend. That's when I stood said in a loud voice "I believe that the rest of this is unethical if you stole the secret!" and left. Hey everybody else thought it was all right so I can't force them to see things my way.


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