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J773
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Belgium
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As a beginner, I'm always looking for new books and videos to teach me stuff.

I know the people who make the video's and books, work hard to make them. They also have to get payed accordingly. But not everyone has the money to go out and get them.

I'm not a big downloader at all, seeing the limits of my internet account. But I was wondering, if magic video's and books are being traded seeing that video's can be copied and books put into PDFs? Do a lot of you guys oppose (hope it's good English) to this?
thumbslinger
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This is a good number:
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This touches on an interesting debate.

If you’re trading an original item (a book,dvd, tape etc) for another original item then both items have been paid for already and it’s still better than returning a book and getting a refund because nothing gets back to the author.

However, copying whether electronically or digitally and trading that offshoot doesn’t seem right because you’ve created a new item at only the cost of photocopying/scanning/entering etc to yourself. And these days, it’s not like an illuminated manuscript written by hand by monks...it’s easy, fast and cheap.

Then again, only capitalists of one side or the other will argue that either way is wrong and that everything should be paid for. One word proves this...libraries.

What’s the difference of checking out a book for free? The library, some patron or a grant purchases one maybe two copies of a book and then hundreds of people read the material. Fundamentally, it is the same. Yes, it is. Sharing knowledge for knowledge sake in hopes to better an education.

Anybody who truly believes trading is morally, ethically or otherwise wrong must also be against education and advancement of civilization. Unfortunately, because of all our ‘freedom’ in this country, too many laws and bylaws have been created and thus splitting hairs is sometimes necessary to sooth our soul.

Don’t make copies and sell them. Don’t make copies and trade copies for copies. That’s about the easiest way to approach it to keep some sense of integrity in the mix.

Specifically pdfs? Because of the nature of the format, I think it is a little different, but again, selling or trading copies of pdfs seems a little wrong because the item itself isn’t absolute as a book or dvd is. (even though those can be copied as well)

So, I myself prefer pristine, unfolded, unbent and non-marked up books so I tend to buy whether new or used (if in good condition) and only trade actual items for actual items if I ever do.
Chet Atkins, Jerry Reed and Tommy Emmanuel are all you need to study to learn to play guitar.
deerbourne
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Centennial, CO
174 Posts

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I'm a big proponent of the freedom to do what you want (within reason) with your purchased media. However, there is a difference between copying something and going to the library.

Libraries have limited stocks and hardly ever have the rare/specific book, DVD or video that most of us use. Most magic books at libraries are the big sellers and general magic books. Specific works are usually only found in the hands of the retail boys.

Also, anything I get from a library has to go back. My personal media is always at hand. That's what I paid for, a personal copy of the information. The library is just loaning it out for several weeks at a time. You could make a copy of that source, but that's the same as copying a friend's source.

Copying media does cost the author but each of us makes that decision when presented with the information vs the cost.

Personally, I have all original books, but I do have a couple of burned DVDs (I know, I'm a heretic). I made that choice based on the sheer cost of the media and the fact that since the art is so secretive, you can get burned on anything you buy. You just don't now what you are gettting until you push 'play'.

It was also before I joined the Magic Café. Since then, I devour any reviews I can find and I make better purchases now. I'm saving a lot of money.

Just my 2 cents.

Deerbourne
Rob Johnston
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Utah
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I generally trade orginal copies for orginal copies.

(Original copies - Oxy Moron?)

That way I get the quality and get rid of my stuff I don't need.
"Genius is another word for magic, and the whole point of magic is that it is inexplicable." - Margot Fonteyn
what
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Lehi, UT, USA
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To me it is this simple:
Both the Standard/Legal ethics should be maintained as well as the Magical Ethics which are a higher standard

Standard/Legal Ethics:
If you purchased material(Material is intelectual property and may appear on many medias like Book, DVD, pdf, etc), you may then sell/trade that material but you may not retain a copy of that material.

Magical Ethics(a higher standard):
If you use that material directly in your act or otherwise, then you should retain that material (You should not trade/sell it).

If you only use the general knowledge like you would from any other book, then you can sell/trade it, but if you use specific lines, methods, presentation from some material, then owning the material is your licence to use said material.

that's my take,

Enjoy!!

Mike
Magic is fun!!!
Paddy
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Milford OH
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Quote:
On 2004-01-27 12:36, deerbourne wrote:

Copying media does cost the author but each of us makes that decision when presented with the information vs the cost.
Deerbourne

Don't know any polite way to say this. That comment is BOOOOGUUUSSSS!! BOGUS!!!! WRONG IGOR!

As a teacher I choose who I am going to teach my magic to. One of the criteria I use for my students is money. If they can afford to take lessons I teach. One of the benefits of taking lessons from me is that any effects I have developed. Once I teach that effect I am giving the student the licence to perform that effect. If I have copywrited this effect to perform it without my permission would get your butt turned fire red when you lost in a lawsuit.

If I make a video or DVD of my work with explanations it is a teaching device. So if I sell it to John A he has the permission to perform all the effects which may be copywrited. So John A cuts a copy and gives it to his friend Judy B. She likes this effect and performs it. Someone sees her and notifies me. If her name is not on my customer database guess who gets a letter marked "see me in court and bring cash cuz checks don't count now!"

Yes, copying is a violation of the copywrite protection and can have consequences for the violators. Authors and performers that teach magic have EVERY RIGHT to protect themselves from theft, and by copying a tape or DVD you are stealing.

Peter
Non Impediti Ratione Cogitationis

I reject your reality & substitute my own

http://www.Scho-Lan.com
J773
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Belgium
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Oke, this is really a question of ethics.

Can you download magic books and DVD's ?
Can you trade them afterwards ?

It's a basicly a world problem ...

DVD's, vidoes and books are expensive --> people start copiing --> less sales --> higher prices --> more downloading.

I'm going to be honest. I got some penguinmagic vids from a friend magician. is it ethical ? Maybe not ... but not everybody has much money ... I'm one of them.
ashah
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I just want to address the library point made earlier. Borrowing a book from a library is not the same as copying something. I think it is okay to borrow a book from the library or a friend for learning's sake. But that doesn't mean I can make a copy of it while I have it and then give back the original while retaining the copy for myself.

It's true that magic books and DVDs are ridiculously expensive. I don't have the money to buy Card College or Art of Astonishment, or even a $35 DVD. So I don't buy them. In fact, I own very little magic.

When a creator puts out something, he is telling the purchaser that he may not make copies for sale or distribution. This includes downloads. By buying, you are agreeing that you will not break that "contract".

The idea that I can't perform something without owning the book or DVD that contains it is foreign to me. I did not know that that was the case. For example, suppose a friend teaches me an effect, so I perform it. But then it turns out that the trick was on a book/video I don't own. Can I be at fault?

Or suppose I visit a friend to watch a magic video that belongs to him. I learn something, and I perform it. Can't I do that?

I think legally I am allowed to do those things, but there may a higher moral standard in magic, as Mike mentioned above.
Peter Marucci
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Lacking the money to buy tapes, DVDs, or books is hardly a good reason to copy them.

J.B. Bobo (of Modern Coin Magic fame) and Tony Slydini (the greatest closeup artist of his time) didn't have any money when they were learning magic; but it didn't seem to slow them down any.

This debate can go on endlessly; we hear legal arguments, ethical arguments, every kind of argument you can think of.

But it's all flogging a dead horse!

And none of it is going to change anything.

Because, first of all, this is such a tiny, tiny problem that it hardly even bears mentioning. The huge and vast majority of magicians buy a tape or DVD and keep it and that's it.
Only a wee minority copy and resell.
How do I know this?
Common sense.
If it were a big problem, don't you think that the individual creators -- at least some of them -- would be hot on the trail of the offenders and drag them into court?
So when was the last time you heard of this happening?
I rest my case!
Smile
Dave V
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Las Vegas, NV
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I don't have money for a car. Smile

Can I just "borrow" your keys? I'll give it back when I'm done (in a few years, or when it breaks down) Smile

Seriously though, I've learned that a good "test" for a lot of things (including your question) is to take it to an extreme and see if the theory still holds true.
No trees were killed in the making of this message, but a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
deerbourne
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Centennial, CO
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Perhaps I need to make myself a little more clear.

I do not condone stealing someone else's property. But people (IN GENERAL) will pay for what they can pay for. An example: I'd like to take Jeff McBride's Master Class. It's a steal of a price, but I can't afford that. So I chose to buy his DVDs as an alternative. I chose what price I was willing to pay for the content.

As for someone else who is even poorer, they may have to use library resources to get started and may find themselves typing in "Free Magic Tricks" into Google. It's what they can afford.

In a pefect world, every city would have a magician who would teach the art and be reimbursed exactly what they were due and magic instruction DVDs would be on pay-per view. We don't live there.

We live in a world of file sharing, photocopying and DVD burners. I can't stop anyone from making copies of copyrighting material. That does not mean I am pro-piracy.

As someone who works in cutting edge media distribution, I understand all too well the proper uses and abuses of ones and zeros. If the media I move gets stolen, my company loses money (big money).

I'm sorry if my first post was not more clear. Magic must be accessible, reasonably priced and open to all who might be serious students of it. Even with that as a given (if it were true), piracy will still be a part of our lives.

Deerbourne
J773
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Belgium
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Going to the library point.

Maybe in the US, libraries have a treasure of books concerning magic, but where I live magic books are rare.
If there are two books, its a lot. The problem is that most good magic books are in english. You will not find RRTCM here in the library.

Even though I have RRTCM in pdf, I still bought the book, because nothing beats the hands on feeling that you have from a real book .
You can only move your computer so far to read a pdf.
Blitzen
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Copyright almost certainly doesn't give a magical inventor the type of protection he/she would like. I cover this topic in the magic law category of my blog (www.odonnell-law.net).

Patents also probably don't do what you want them to...that's also on my site.
Trade secrets probably don't do what you want them to...I'm still working on that post so don't look for it.

I can't fathom why anyone would want to share any trick, except for the most basic "getting one interested in the art" motivation.

I've paid for tricks that I could share with the public and I've got a couple tricks that I think are all mine. Being a patent lawyer, I've got a good idea of how to avoid any legal issue that my disclosure might bring up. Still why would I do that? Magical ethics aside, why would I want anyone else to know my secrets?

Steve
http://www.odonnell-law.net
Peter Marucci
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Steve writes: "I can't fathom why anyone would want to share any trick, except for the most basic "getting one interested in the art" motivation."

As one who has given away literally hundreds of routines, both on the Internet and in my column in the Linking Ring, I may have an answer:

It might be called generosity, or kindness, or the desire to give something back, or the desire to help smooth the way for someone, or . . . well, the list goes on and on.

Steve adds: ". . . why would I want anyone else to know my secrets?"

First of all, secrets are really no big deal; if your audience doesn't know them already, they could figure them out easily enough (see Fitzkee's trilogy).

Second, they are not "my" secrets; they are magic's secrets and the more experienced practitioners should be willing to help newcomers. After all, someone helped you, didn't they?

I applaud places like the Magic Café; would that there were such places 50 years ago, when I was starting out; it would have made things much easier. As it is, now it's my turn to try to make things a bit easier for those coming along later.

And that's why I would want someone to know "my" secrets!

Smile
Mike Walton
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I think trading and/or selling original DVDs and books is just fine. I believe a secondary used product market can drive an author's new product market if the consumer knows they can recoop part of the cost by selling it or trading it for something else later. With that potential recooping of partial cost, the consumer then makes the purchase decision.

I will not trade copies, sell copies, etc. Why? Because I can afford the original or a used copy if I stick to a budget. Also, trading pirated works may hurt new sales, which stimulate new ideas and this is one industry where I do not want to short change the originators.

With this framework, would you copy and trade an out of print manuscript like an Evening With Charlie Miller? It's unavailable anywhere for any price. Trading this would not hurt the new market nor the used market as it's not on the market. It seems this information will be lost if not captured and spread. I just had a used bookseller note they had it, then sent an email explaining they couldn't find it on the shelf. What do you do?

I have to admit I still wouldn't trade or purchase a copy. Right now, magic is one of the few arts among my interests and I prefer to keep the actions around it relatively sacred and correct.
irossall
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Snohomish, Washington
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The Bottom line of your question, as far as I'm concerned, is do what you feel is right. Most people know when their actions are right or wrong. We really can't stop people from making copies of other's material for sale, trade or give-aways unless it is on a large scale. It sounds to me like you may be looking for endorsement from other's to justify what you are doing. You and everyone else (me included) will do whatever it is they want to do anyway. Jusification is not needed. If you feel guilty about your actions then stop, if you don't feel guilty then go ahead and do whatever it is that you do.
Iven Smile
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J773
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Belgium
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I wasn't really looking for justification.
I'm old enough to decide what is wrong or right.

Since you can't post actual trading questions (except for originals), I was just wondering if there are a lot of people who trade copies.
Blitzen
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Maybe I misunderstood the original posting. I thought it pertained to trading a la Kaaza or similar P2P networks. There are places that sell downloadable tricks that could easily wind up on a P2P network.

As far as actual trading of effects goes..."I'll show you this trick if you show me how you do ---", that's totally different, that is probably the oldest way of spreading good tricks around, followed by mentoring.

Steve
http://www.odonnell-law.net
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