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Daegs
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I have a situation I'd like your feedback on. I'd also ask that only you ethical magicians read on(meaning you think stealing from magicians is wrong), as we already know what those who are unethical will say:

Imagine you are at a convention, and a mysterious character watches you perform an amazing original piece of magic out in the lobby. After the performance, he approches you and explains he is the member of a secret sect of magicians which is invitation only and based on artistic skill. He explains that your original routine is very good and that it qualifies you to join.

You decide to join(free membership), and are given a key. This key unlocks a door to a library which is filled with *EVERY* single book and video ever published. Not only new things, but those super hard to find gambling books where only 50 were ever made, or some old out of print material that you thought would be completly un-obtainable. There is every magic work that you have lusted after but thought you could never obtain just waiting to be read and/or watched on the big-screen that is setup in the back of this "library".

Now, the question is: Do you use this library?

1: All the books were legally purchased, yet it is known that generally magical publishers do not let their work be used in rental/loaning situations, and other members of this society will also be using the library.
2: This is very secretive and very small, so this is not a large public situation.
3: Your were invited only for your great skill at magic, and only great magicians are invited to this group.

The question, is would you turn down access to this library which contains every piece of magical knowledge you've always wanted to obtain because you did not purchase the items yourself?

-daegs
ps, As a sub-question, how do you feel this relates(a private library of shared resources(of the actual books/vids) and things like online piracy?

Would you feel comfortable having 3 close magician friends over and popping in that latest DVD you purchased?

What about streaming that video to 3 close friends over the internet?

I'm just wondering where the line lays for most people posting in this forum.

Thanks!
entity
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Were the books/videos for this secret club purchased by the club for the use of its members? Who is bankrolling this enterprise, if not the members?

If there are specific and substantial criteria for membership and access to the club, and the materials were purchased specifically for use of the club members, then sure, I would make use of the library, should I qualify.

This does not, in my opinion, relate to online piracy, since online ANY person qualified or not, can download material not specifically purchased for their use.

Would I share my latest DVD with 3 close friends? No, unless it were a performance only DVD. I might share it with someone qualified to understand the material in order to ask them specific questions that I have that are not answered on the DVD, though.

Equally, I would not stream video of a DVD to others.

- entity
Daegs
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Yes the material was purchased specifically for use of the club members, but L&L(or whoever the publisher is) did not grant the club permission to let many view its source.

What you seem to be saying though, is that its ok to steal if you are a good magician that meets the criteria, but not ok to steal if you aren't?

Remember, in the eyes of the publisher, having a club that loans out a single video/book to many members is stealing too.

Regarding online piracy, what about an online club where you still had to meet the specific criteria, but all the materials were online?
JackScratch
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I see what you are getting at, and no, I don't think I would use them. On the other hand, I don't think anyone realy needs those kinds of resources to be a superb magician. The real question here is, what is it you think your missing out on? What do you think you need to be as good a magician as you can be. Might be a novelty, might be interesting to peruse this mythic library, but it's just not the great boon you make it sound like.
Drs_Res
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If I recall correctly, The Magic Castle has a members only library.

I think (not a member myself) that any regular (magician) member in good standing can use it, but you cannot remove books from it, you can only use it when you visit the Castle.

EDIT:

from: http://www.magiccastle.com/about/membership.cfm

{quote}
Become a Member

Magicians and magic enthusiasts around the world have come to know The Magic Castle as the ultimate magic clubhouse and home of the Academy of Magical Arts, Inc.

The Academy of Magical Arts, Inc. was created by Milt and Bill Larsen Jr. Milt discovered a Victorian mansion built in 1908 in the hills above Hollywood, and the rest is history.

The Academy's purpose is to encourage and promote public interest in the art of magic with particular emphasis on preserving its history as an art form, entertainment medium, and hobby.

When you become a member, the Magic Castle becomes your Magic Castle. You and your guests can enjoy the unique talents of the Magic Castle's world-class performers and dine in Victorian splendor. Members can also enjoy a special Friday lunch, Sunday Brunches (a treat for the whole family), and a wide variety of members-only events. As a member, you also have the privilege of issuing guest passes to your friends and business associates so they too can visit the Castle. Magician members can also take advantage of the Magic Castle's extensive library of books, videos, DVDs, and periodicals exploring the world of the magical arts, and can attend lectures presented by some of the world's foremost experts in the world of magic.
{end quote}
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Daegs
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So here is a question, did the castle obtain permission from every publisher/author(whoever has the rights) to grant them permission to use their books as a library?
Daegs
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Also, to JackScratch:

I don't think anyone needs the resources to be entertaining or even a good magician.

I will say, however, that I have many original items that were created after being inspired from sources, and in many cases I use a move or subtlty that really improves my magic that I learnt from a specific hard to find source.

I think that everyone should agree that there is much to be learnt from magicians that have come before us and that having access to some of the best and brightest work would be a great help to *every* magician no matter the skill level.
George Ledo
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Quote:
On 2006-05-27 20:58, Daegs wrote:
Remember, in the eyes of the publisher, having a club that loans out a single video/book to many members is stealing too.

I'm responding specifically to this one comment...

Two words: public libraries.

Three words: Video rental stores.

Four words: Second hand book stores.

Several words: Bookstores that allow browsing, and the vast majority of them do.

Just the other day I was at my local B&N, and, right there on one of the bargain tables (no less!) was a book titled something like "Secrets of the Masons." I have to wonder if the Masons get as fired up about this sort of thing as we do, and how they handle it. Any Masons out there?
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JackScratch
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Ones interaction woth a piece of literature will vary widely with the amount of time one is able to practicly spend with that piece of literature. The kind of library that does not allow you to take books home, will only serve as a very effective advertisement for a published work. In the respect, I think it's fine, I imagine the publisher would as well. This is also a good way for a magician to gain insite into what books he/she may actualy be interested in purchasing. A little better than a review for knowing if a work fits ones style.
Daegs
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Quote:
On 2006-05-28 11:20, George Ledo wrote:
Quote:
On 2006-05-27 20:58, Daegs wrote:
Remember, in the eyes of the publisher, having a club that loans out a single video/book to many members is stealing too.

I'm responding specifically to this one comment...

Two words: public libraries.

Three words: Video rental stores.

Four words: Second hand book stores.

Several words: Bookstores that allow browsing, and the vast majority of them do.

Just the other day I was at my local B&N, and, right there on one of the bargain tables (no less!) was a book titled something like "Secrets of the Masons." I have to wonder if the Masons get as fired up about this sort of thing as we do, and how they handle it. Any Masons out there?


And I'll respond by telling you that nearly all magic titles say "not for rental" and cannot be used in that way.

I remember there was a magic shop(I think in CA but don't quote me) that was "loaning" video's out to members for a small monthly fee, and eventually L&L or A1 or someone went after them and got them to stop it.... magic publishers are *definatly* not keen on letting any shop rent their products or having their stuff in libraries.

Finally, was that book actually a mason manual, or was it one of the *many* books published supposedly revealing their "secrets" by a 3rd party?

There are also "magic for dummies" books in book stores availible for browsing, but that is not what I'm talking about... we are talking about a collection of serious magic works where the publisher clearly does not allow rental/loaning, yet there is a private group of magicians doing sl... at least stay on topic Smile
Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
On 2006-05-28 04:57, Daegs wrote:...that having access to some of the best and brightest work would be a great help to *every* magician no matter the skill level.


In exchange for basic respect for their work and KEEPING IT SECRET.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
On 2006-05-28 23:02, Daegs wrote:...And I'll respond by telling you that nearly all magic titles say "not for rental" and cannot be used in that way....


Any magic sold on the open market may be used as the OWNER/purchaser sees fit with the MINOR restriction about making/selling copies. They are free to write up and sell the ideas, props, routining and anything they please.

That's the law.

Otherwise most here would not have any clue or access to the works of most who have gone before us and had their works put into print by strangers and their props duplicated by manufactures they have never met.

Think zombie, zigzag, chopcup, glorpy, linking rings, wildcard.... the list of things TAKEN into the public domain of magicdom is very long.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
George Ledo
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Quote:
On 2006-05-28 23:02, Daegs wrote:
And I'll respond by telling you that nearly all magic titles say "not for rental" and cannot be used in that way.

Finally, was that book actually a mason manual, or was it one of the *many* books published supposedly revealing their "secrets" by a 3rd party?

I know we're getting off your point here, but "most magic titles" do not say "not for rental." That seems to be a new development over the past x years. Back in the previous millenium, people used common sense; the vast majority of magic literature since the beginning of the 20th century, and before, was just published. Period.

Just a couple of nights ago I was looking through the Dover Publications on-line catalog: a number of "classic" titles were right there for sale to anyone who punched in their credit card number.

As far as the masonic book, I don't have a clue. But if we look closely at the many works of Gibson, Elliott, et al, which a lot of us grew up with and learned lots from, we will realize they were published for the general public.

See, it's really easy to tell when an old magic book was published for the general public and when it was published for "the trade." Books published for the general public just tell you how the trick is done; books published for magicians at least attempt to teach you how to do them. Put Hoffmann and Tarbell, or Gibson and Ganson, side by side, and you can tell the difference right away.

I have absolutely no problem with somebody nowadays publishing a work with "not for rental" on the cover page. That's their prerogative, and I for one will respect it. But if they really believe that's going to keep other people from sharing it in this day and age... well... I have a cousin in New York City who has a nice long bridge for sale.
That's our departed buddy Burt, aka The Great Burtini, doing his famous Cups and Mice routine
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Daegs
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All that aside, my issue is how is a club library different from online piracy?

If I charged a yearly fee and only allowed magicians in, could I share every book and DVD on the market with them as online downloads?
Drs_Res
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In the case of the Castle, I believe (as I said before) that you are only allowed to use the materials in the library while at the Castle. You are not allowed to make copies of the books or the DVDs.

There is also the fact that not all members are allowed access to the library, only the Magician members.

Now, making the DVD down-loadable, you are making unauthorized copies of the material and letting others have those copies. That is piracy.
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entity
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Quote:
On 2006-05-27 20:58, Daegs wrote:
<Yes the material was purchased specifically for use of the club members, but L&L(or whoever the publisher is) did not grant the club permission to let many view its source.>

That's a false assumption on your part. Once the publisher sells to a buyer, they have no control over how that buyer chooses to use that particular book or video, apart from copying it. In the case of your fictitious club, the books were purchased or donated specifically to be accessed by qualified members.

<What you seem to be saying though, is that its ok to steal if you are a good magician that meets the criteria, but not ok to steal if you aren't?>

Again, a false assumption and obviously what you wanted people to say given the set-up of your questions. What I said was that if the books and videos were purchased legitimately for the purpose of being accessed by qualified club members, and there was a strict and specific qualification for membership, then I would use the library. No law is broken, and the property is not copied or electronically duplicated and offered to the masses.

<Remember, in the eyes of the publisher, having a club that loans out a single video/book to many members is stealing too.>

I may be wrong, but I don't think that your original post said anything about "Loaning Out". I believe there is a difference between having a private research facility where books and videos are avialable "in house" under specifc rules to specific people, and the concept of a rental or loaning out service. For that reason I strongly disagree with Magic Clubs having lending libraries of books and tapes.

<Regarding online piracy, what about an online club where you still had to meet the specific criteria, but all the materials were online?>

In that case you would be infringing upon copyrights by electronically duplicating or copying the original works. That is illegal, unless you have the specific permission of those who own the copyrights. If you charge money for your online club, you would again be breaking the law if offering these services. Beyond all of that, it would be vitually impossible to enforce the behaviour of those who have access to the materials, to keep them from copying them and distributing them illegally. It would also not be possible to enforce any real criteria for judging the qualifications of those who access your online site.


<<

- entity
Daegs
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Ok entity, so what if I setup my online club to stream the video rather than making copies availible for download?

Surely by not offering copies, anyone who did capture the vid could just as easily take a camcorder into the real life library, no?
entity
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Technology the way it is, I'm sure people at home could find a way to capture your streamed video and then make their own copies to sell, rent, etc. You would have no control over that. I don't know the legal judgement on this, but to me, streaming video is still electronic duplication, since it is received by others on their own machines. Basically you are broadcasting the video in a closed-circuit way, and without permission from the creators of the videos, that would contravene the copyright laws.

While someone COULD take a camcorder into your imaginary private club, I'd suspect that your criteria for membership would make this unlikely. I'd also suspect that, although you don't specify it in your early post, there could be some sort of rules of conduct for such a club, including rules against copying or removing materials from the library. Theft or copying would be easy to detect and to prevent.

While it is difficult to enforce honest behaviour from everyone, and mistakes in judgement might sometimes be made when choosing those for membership, it is much less likely to happen in the live private club you mention, with a limited number of members, chosen face-to-face and based upon their merit and professionalism as performers, than in a faceless, international electronic online club with many members. You have no real way in the online club of judgeing the professionalism of the members. Even if you only chose people you knew for your online club, there is still the legal problem of electronic duplication in streaming the video, which, as I pointed out earlier, would still contravene the copyright laws.

IMHO.

- entity
Jonathan Townsend
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If I had such access I would revel in the knowlege and then have to get permission or copies of books before I would USE the stuff professionally or in any published work.

That's pretty much the way I treated the books at Tannen's and at various collector's homes over the years.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
entity
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Jonathan: Yes, I think you're right, there. In the past, whenever I've come upon a routine or effect that I liked, seeing it in a book or on a video that I didn't own, I've always bought the book or video (and sometimes contacted the originator) if I wanted to use it in my own performances.

Like you, I revel (good word!) in the wonderful thinking of other creators, and file away great ideas for future reference, and I'm more than willing to pay for the things that will assist me in making my living.

- entity
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