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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The workers » » "The Workers" Pledge (16 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Dooby Scoo
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It sounds to me like Steve just had some unfortunate financial difficulty that made it impossible to release a product. It sucks, but stuff happens. More importantly, what does any of that have to do with this thread, though? I think that the pledge is a great idea and should reduce a lot of the sort of flamewars you see on here from time to time.
Muddy Dench
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Quote:
On Apr 20, 2014, Dooby Scoo wrote:
It sounds to me like Steve just had some unfortunate financial difficulty that made it impossible to release a product. It sucks, but stuff happens....


Since money was collected in advance, that wouldn't be the reason.
Dooby Scoo
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Maybe he didn't get enough money to complete the project? Maybe some complications came up that we don't know about?
Muddy Dench
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On Apr 20, 2014, Dooby Scoo wrote:
Maybe he didn't get enough money to complete the project? Maybe some complications came up that we don't know about?


That was never voiced. In fact, just the opposite -- he made it clear he was nearly finished. He just kept pushing due dates out into the future all the while merrily posting away on card magic. This has happened on other projects of his. It's a pattern, it's not circumstantial.
Dooby Scoo
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Well, I don't know about any of that, truthfully. Others have said that he suffered from some sort of affliction and perhaps that was the cause behind it. Including the delays and missed deadlines and whatnot. I don't know. I'm not a doctor. I don't even play one on TV! But really, what about what I asked before, though, which is this: "More importantly, what does any of that have to do with this thread, though? I think that the pledge is a great idea and should reduce a lot of the sort of flamewars you see on here from time to time."
R.E. Byrnes
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Unless his mental illness renders him unable to simply decide not to post here, he's as accountable as anyone else for posts that are so often antagonistic and petty.
Dooby Scoo
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All I can say is that from reading what he wrote here and in other discussions I have searched, his heart was in the right place. I'm glad if this thread is getting Likes. He deserves it.
paisa23
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IM home.
Muddy Dench
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On Apr 21, 2014, Dooby Scoo wrote:
All I can say is that from reading what he wrote here and in other discussions I have searched, his heart was in the right place. I'm glad if this thread is getting Likes. He deserves it.


That is because what you are able to see is a sanitized version of his posts. All the antagonistic and negative posts have been deleted.
Dooby Scoo
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Well, that's convenient. We have to take your word for it? Doesn't it stand to logic that if he's such an awful person that there would be some sort of place to see the truth of it? And if there's no place to see the truth of it, maybe, just maybe, he's not such an awful person?

I am not very impressed with the way VIPs get treated around here. I think he's getting some bad treatment here because he got banned for a completely different reason. If good guys like Vlad, Mr. Michael Vincent (yes, I checked), Mr. Darwin Ortiz (yes, I checked), Mr. Whit Hayden (yes, I checked) and others have nice things to say about him, how does that stack up against some anonymous posters who have no proof? It stacks about as poorly as Si Stebbins aganst Mnemonica if you ask me. Smile
Muddy Dench
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On Apr 21, 2014, Dooby Scoo wrote:
Well, that's convenient. We have to take your word for it? Doesn't it stand to logic that if he's such an awful person that there would be some sort of place to see the truth of it? And if there's no place to see the truth of it, maybe, just maybe, he's not such an awful person? ...


No need to take my word for it. Go right to the source. The next time you talk with him ask him about Jerry Lukins.

BTW, I never said he was an "awful person."
Dooby Scoo
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I don't think that's how it works. We've got a discussion here with great idea, started by a VIP with a good intent, who has credentials from some of the best in the business! Unfortunately, we've also got some malcontents who want to bring up a history of illness and a business problem, two things that have nothing to do behind the soul of this discussion, and that's ok?

The responsibility for disproving what seems totally clear to everybody but a few isn't mine. If you've got something to say, it should be said plainly. I've done my research and I'm happy with what I have found. Should I put up the quotes with all the nice things said about him?
mlippo
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Quote:
On Apr 21, 2014, Dooby Scoo wrote:
I don't think that's how it works. We've got a discussion here with great idea, started by a VIP with a good intent, who has credentials from some of the best in the business! Unfortunately, we've also got some malcontents who want to bring up a history of illness and a business problem, two things that have nothing to do behind the soul of this discussion, and that's ok?

The responsibility for disproving what seems totally clear to everybody but a few isn't mine. If you've got something to say, it should be said plainly. I've done my research and I'm happy with what I have found. Should I put up the quotes with all the nice things said about him?


But it looks as if you haven' t realised that HE was one of the people who completely disattended his own words....

and +1 to the post above your latest. I was half scammed and treatex badly by him few years ago. It will never happen again.
Dooby Scoo
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On Apr 22, 2014, mlippo wrote:
Quote:
On Apr 21, 2014, Dooby Scoo wrote:
I don't think that's how it works. We've got a discussion here with great idea, started by a VIP with a good intent, who has credentials from some of the best in the business! Unfortunately, we've also got some malcontents who want to bring up a history of illness and a business problem, two things that have nothing to do behind the soul of this discussion, and that's ok?

The responsibility for disproving what seems totally clear to everybody but a few isn't mine. If you've got something to say, it should be said plainly. I've done my research and I'm happy with what I have found. Should I put up the quotes with all the nice things said about him?


But it looks as if you haven' t realised that HE was one of the people who completely disattended his own words....


I don't get this at all. Everybody gets into spats on the message boards. This is not a new thing! In my searches on this Magic Café I also saw some arguments he got into but they were your average spats. I don't see at all why he is being singled out as being worse than anybody! Where is the justification for that? All I read is secondhand evidence. Well ok! I found secondhand evidence that he was an amazing performer, great teacher and all-around excellent magician.

There is very little respect for VIPs it seems. People should learn to have respect for their betters.
Vlad_77
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Hi all,

(WARNING: Long post, skip if you aren't interested).

I've followed the recent posts in this thread since it was resurrected this month after lying dormant for two years. I've been resisting commenting here as I am dealing with significant difficulties that may force me to sell off almost all of my magic except for Apocalypse and digital products just to make it back to America. But, I've been part of this community for a number of years and sometimes silence is not the best solution.

Now, I will preface all of this by stating that it's no secret to those who know me here that I do consider Steven Youell a gracious man and one hell of a teacher. I've had the privilege in the past of talking to Steven a number of times on Skype and found him to be frank and forthcoming on many subjects. And yes, anyone wishing to dredge up posts I made about Keys to the Kingdom will see that I gave what I saw of it very high praise. It really is an amazing idea and I was looking forward to it as much as anybody. Steven even offered me a free "alpha" build of the product but I refused. I want to buy it because I believe a creator deserve recompense for her/his hard work. True, I have been sent products to review and I have reviewed them objectively although the majority of the magic I have reviewed comes from my own library and my own purchases. I want to add as well that even though I know the method to Keys, I will not use it until or IF it is ever published out of respect for the creator.

I have had my share of mess ups here as well. Things here are NOT good. I came here two years ago and I foolish enough to believe certain promises that never came to fruition and as a result, I have begun to lose who I am and it's not a pretty thing. I suffer from PTSD because of an horrific childhood that I will not go into here except to say that every day of my first 18 years of life was literally a day to day exercise of finding new strategies and tactics to survive.

Right before I moved to this country, I had promised Doomo, Vinny Marini, and a few others that I would give them substantial feedback on products they hoped to release. Needless to say I was humbled and honored. And because of what I am dealing I failed to deliver on those promises and I regret it every day. I have apologized to these people and Vinny forgave me. As for the others, it is certainly their right to remain angry and I can only hope one day that I will be given a second chance. It's hard to regain trust in this little community; sins are easily remembered.

Now, having said all of that, I am not using either PTSD or my current situation as excuses. I was raised to fulfill promises and and I always had until I came here. So I understand the anger and/or indifference of those who have not accepted my apologies. They may feel ripped off and certainly they may feel that their trust was broken and that all I wanted to do was score some "swag" as one of them stated. That is not true but, I cannot change the mind of another. Rather, as a man I have to face up to my errors.

What does all of this have to do with Steven? A lot actually. Many of you are upset that Steven did not deliver this later project and a few of you have expressed hurt and anger about the failure to deliver on some earlier products. Now, I want to be clear about this: I still and always will consider Steven a friend and a wonderful mentor for lack of a better term yet I understand the anger. Clearly he did not fulfill on promises paid for. I am not close enough to Steven to know for instance why he suddenly vanished and again, the record is here about how others and I were and are genuinely concerned for Steven as a human being. Is he well? Is he getting the help he needs? I pray so and I suspect many others do as well. I cannot address the allegations of certain magicians who no longer came to the Café because of Steven's sometimes vitriolic posts as I am not privy to that information so to me it is hearsay and I find it problematic to crucify a man based upon "he said, she said" - not that I would want to crucify anyone anyhow!

Here IS what I know: When Steven demonstrated some of Keys, he was on fire to get it released. He was in the finishing stages of polishing and I still stand by my original assessment that Keys IS a product that many of you will love and use - it's a paradigm changer. Then, of a sudden, I and others lost contact with Steven. At first, I chalked this up to the propensity of some creators to go into hermit mode to polish the rough edges. I saw a bit later that his account here was wiped out. I have no idea whether he did left of his own accord or whether The Café powers nixed his account. His prolonged absence worried me and many others. I received many PMs from very well respect folks here who were also genuinely concerned for Steven and NOT because Keys wasn't released but rather for the more important and fundamental concern for Steven as a human being.

I still do not know how Steven is doing. We have not spoken since I believe 2012. I realize I am risking the anger of those of you who feel you were scammed by saying that I miss him. I also will state that it is my belief that it was never his intention to scam anybody. Like it or not, Steven earned the respect of many top card magicians and if there is one thing I have learned in my 20 plus years in this art is that respect is not given easily.

Others will point to the unfortunate incident between Steven and Andrew Musgrave that came to an unfortunate and horrible crescendo. Steven apologized profusely to all here publicly, to Andrew many times, and yet, after all of that, some people wanted blood regardless, and I am talking about people who popped on here who had nothing to do with that unfortunate event. Was Steven wrong in what he did? Yes. And he tried to address it but to little avail. I hope that he and Andrew will have begun to mend fences but really, only Andrew, Steven, and God knows.

Again I will reiterate that I DO understand that many feel cheated and I will add again that your feelings of anger are completely justified. You made a deal in good faith and you ended up on the dirty end of the proverbial stick. But, what sickens me are the few armchair psychologists who state that if Steven could post in this or that forum - there was a controversy that he was posting in Conjure Nation - that he should have owned up to what happened with Keys. I would agree in any normal circumstance but truly, Steven is dealing with an illness that does not go away. Yes it can be managed but the disorder he suffers is unpredictable and most importantly, is not something he chose as is the case with a smoker who contracts lung cancer. Though PTSD and bipolar disorder are not the same illness, I can tell you that PTSD is also manageable but even with medication which I take faithfully twice a day, there are times when panic attacks breakthrough and I am paralyzed. The best one can do is weather the storm and hope that it passes. Emotional disorders like PTSD and mental disorders like bipolar syndrome still are stigmatized in our so-called enlightened 21st century. I shudder to think that a mere 50-60 years ago, folks like Steven and I would have been sent to languish in state psychiatric hospitals.

Some here are proceeding from the false premise that Steven is not suffering an illness; that he is nothing more than a scam artist. Yet, even without getting into the psychological manifestations of mental illness, the record on The Café reveals so much. Steven is the father of The Pledge and it IS a good thing. It is a call to treat one another with at least a modicum of respect and what can possibly be wrong with that? And for those who harbor ill will toward Steven and for those who feel justified anger, still, the fact remains that the spirit of The Pledge is nonetheless a noble one. Readers of Chaucer will be familiar with The Summoner's Tale from The Canterbury Tales. For those not familiar, the skinny is that The Summoner does good despite his own intentions, i.e, the things he said were good things despite his own selfish predilections. I do not think Steven is a Summoner. Rather, the message is still a good one. Actually, with regard to spats, shortly after I joined the Café, Steven jumped all over me and we got into a royal dust up over a comment I made about the fact that I loathe performing for other magicians. Steven's reasoning has caused me to rethink my original aversion, but, yes, he could be combative.

Yet, The Café ALSO shows Steven offering superb advice in countless threads and Steven giving unselfishly and without recompense of his own expertise because he does love this art as much as the rest of us. So I find myself wondering why these instances are rarely mentioned.

And I agree that some of our VIPs ARE ill treated in this community. Yes, your eyes are bleeding due to my verbosity and I apologize, but, I will again write what I have written many MANY times here. I am also a musician and it is very rare that the very top performers in music take any active - or passive for that matter - roles in online music communities. In fact, the only bigger name musician I can think of is keyboardist Jordan Rudess of Dream Theater. Believe me, we respect Jordan for what he does and we are thankful that he takes the time out to talk to us, advise us, and generally just be there as one of the girls/guys. I think we would all suffer a collection cardiac infarction if a legend like Sir Paul McCartney would visit one of our communities! Smile

Yet here, we have the equivalent and unfortunately, some take their presence for granted. Some of these VIPs offer decades worth of wisdom and whole threads pop up with people wanting to hang these people from the nearest tree. Why? Yes, there is one who seems to be a special favorite and is targeted frequently and at times mercilessly. He can be bombastic but, I have found that his bombastic responses tend to be a response to people who have made inane statements and ad hominem attacks. But one thing is certain: you always know where you stand with this VIP.

Consider some of the other VIPs we have here: Randy Wakeman, Darwin Ortiz, Curtis Kam, Michael Vincent (a gentleman if ever one was created), Jamie Grant, Peter Duffie (who doesn't bear the honorific but SHOULD), Cameron Francis, Dan Harlan, Bob Cassidy, and many more. These people have so much to teach those of us who are trying to be a tenth of the magicians/performers that they are, and, sadly, many of them have been the brunt of simply atrocious attacks. No, I do not place them above anyone else as human beings, but I DO listen to their words very openly as a magician. Pardon my pontification but I believe that they have earned the right to advise and to be listened to. Yes, I also believe that it is fine to disagree with them but that it should be done with respect. Hence, The Pledge, no matter what your feelings are or were toward Steven Youell, is a GOOD thing.

But The Pledge goes further: it does not apply only to the VIPs. It applies to all of us and many of us - myself perhaps chief among the community - have violated that Pledge. I regret that but I will keep trying to improve for as long as I can stay in this art that played a huge role in literally saved my life. And to all that I have wronged or disappointed, I beg your forgiveness. We are all frail and imperfect and we all trip up - even our VIPs.

The Magic Café is the world's largest online magic/mentalism community and it truly is - with all of its warts and sometimes festering sores - an invaluable resource for the beginner, the veteran, the pro, and hacks like yours truly. I think in the end that The Pledge is a call to respect not only each other but a higher call to respect this art and all of those who came before that made it possible for us to give our audiences something so beautiful and so rare. Maybe we forget that most non-magicians never get the privilege of witnessing well performed magic live. What we do is special in my humble estimation because for a span of time, we can offer the possibility that anything is possible. Perhaps an audience member is on the verge of losing his home. Perhaps another is praying for a cure of an illness plaguing a loved one. We do not know. But, it is certain that for that brief time we are with them, we can give them a tiny bit of respite from those worries. In a way, our magic IS real because it is human in the noblest sense.

Thank you to those who endured this novella.

Slainte,
Vlad
Muddy Dench
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All of your post is fine, Vlad. You make reasonable arguments (though I would take exception that he really apologized to Andrew since he did say in his 'apology' that he was smiling to know Andrew was beaten). It's understandable you have feelings as a friend and from your posts you would be a valued friend, no question about that. What bothers people is he is posting merrily away about card magic without having fulfilled his promises--on other sites and here under an assumed name. And, it's still going on. It is hard to forgive when this continues.
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Excellent post as usual, Vlad, and I totally agree with you about the value he must have brought as a mentor. I'm jealous, to be honest! I've continued through the searches looking for most evidence to back up the accusations of his behaviour, and yet, all I can find is more knowledge, more wisdom, more GOLD whenever he talks about card magic. I haven't seen anything yet to contradict that but I have to say it's a pleasure looking for it! I feel like I am learning more and more and becoming a better card man just through this study. To the critics, I can only say this ; thanks for the Wild Goose Chase, guys!
Vlad_77
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Thanks for the kind words Muddy Dench and Dooby Scoo. I cannot address the issue of Steven posting elsewhere or even here. And while my post does indeed represent a thank you to Steven as a mentor, I also wanted to convey that I do understand why people are upset.

So, my hope is that all of this can be cleared up. Steven's wisdom is missed here.

Slainte,
Vlad
tomsk192
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People should learn to have respect for their betters.


Ahahahaha. Who did ya have in mind? Jerry Lukins? He was a VIP here, under a different name; as I recall he set up a little website calling another member here a paedophile. Practically ruined the guy's life. Nice guy, right?

It seems that you may be suffering from low self esteem, if you think that having the letters 'VIP' on a magic forum makes one person 'better' than another.
Erdnase27
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On Apr 23, 2014, tomsk192 wrote:
Quote:
People should learn to have respect for their betters.


Ahahahaha. Who did ya have in mind? Jerry Lukins? He was a VIP here, under a different name; as I recall he set up a little website calling another member here a paedophile. Practically ruined the guy's life. Nice guy, right?

It seems that you may be suffering from low self esteem, if you think that having the letters 'VIP' on a magic forum makes one person 'better' than another.


I read that aswell and if that's true, he won't get my respect .. not now.. not ever.
"He must be content to rank with the common herd." - S.W. Erdnase
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