Is exposure a significant problem in magic?

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by kingdamian1, Jan 1, 2018.

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  1. I do agree.
    I do agree.
    And that is my WHOLE POINT.
    If anyone is serious abt magic, they WILL HAVE to start taking it slow. Admittedly, I started, not with YT, but with other internet sites. And then, believe me when I say nobody had RECOMMENDED me, but I still felt that I love this thing, I wanna learn more, so I need to purchase books. And good ones. And learn from become infinitely better.
    So if someone wants to be really good, ALL roads to that 'goodness' will lead to being more serious and purchasing books and other stuff not available for free.
    And that is EXACTLY what I keep repeating. Those 'magicians' who don't do that are not serious abt magic. So how does exposure affect us when bad magicians get weeded out (bad as in those who only rely on YT stuff and don't wanna practice anything well) and the laymen who view exposure...they too don't remember the priniciples taught, aaaaand, the better secrets are not taught!
    Where does the harm step in?
    If that's what I want, I should get out from here real fast...because secrets are not the stuff discussed here :)
    But I don't plan on doing so...
    So that means?

    Also, I am concerned the least abt either of the 2 things you mentioned. Anyone is allowed to give away information anyhow they want to, that's not for me to judge.
    The only thing am concerned about (or to be honest, am not concerned too much abt that either...because it doesn't matter if I am, what is happening won't stop) is the amount of hate YT is getting for just introducing people to more and more magic.
    We must agree to differ on out ideas about laziness and righteousness.
    But do not underestimate laziness, if you absolutely MUST call it that way.
    Bill Gates:-"I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it."
    And for that, I thank you. You have been quite a help in reviewing facts and gaining more knowledge.
    Yes, I do understand. And yes, you are wrong. The reason being that I have been introduced to this thread not what you'd say 'early' in my magic education. So I have been doing a whole lot of things over the course of years. Now that I have got some place and some people on whom I can rely to advise what is correct...I ask all that is running through my mind.
    I also typically don't mention when I actually GET a sleight I have been working on or when I actually start working on a sleight SERIOUSLY, so...
    Like the time I asked which is better, the bluff pass or the tilt, I got some AMAZING views and insights. And this helped me decide that for my ACR, am gonna incorporate a bluff pass. But that doesn't mean as soon as I saw what people have to say, I ran and began practising the sleight. I asked abt the second deal quite some time back, I started practising it since a week ago or something. Again, sometimes I ask stuff I am currently doing, like the classic pass, the classic palm, and the tenkai palm. See? I treat theory 11 as a resource to guide me the correct way. I DO NOT treat it as a diary to record my sleights and when I learn them. But yes, when I DO start learning something I have asked before, I revisit those threads and look up more of them.
    On that front, trying my best to get my hands on them :)
  2. Also, just saying, I don't defend laziness. The only thing I wanna say is, don't underestimate anyone, no one at all. Shin Lim started magic thru YT tutorials too.
    Also, it is wrong analogy that only those who do a particular thing or are involved in it will defend that. If I defend YT as a whole (generalizing everything ) it may not mean YT is MY main resource.
    One does not actually need to be poor to defend their rights. One does not need to actually be in an anti-terrorist squad to be against terrorism.

    Just saying, trying to measure up people on the basis of what they defend or go against is not very fool-proof.

    I get that the experts won't like someone who starts a convo saying "I learned this on You Tube"...forget experts, I myself won't like that. So I don't support that mindset.
    But I also don't support the mindset that You Tuhbe harms magic as a community or anything close to that.
    I dunno, I MAY be as completely wrong. But this change is happening as we speak. We can only speculate on what will happen.
    Till now atleast the only time I got talked to abt YT is when I did a book test for a show and a girl said she had seen it on AGT (not a tutorial btw). And I did not take offence.
    So for the magical community, till now atleast no HUGE backlash has occurred.

    so far, so good.
  3. All of your comments have been centered around how people knowing secrets shouldn't matter - that alone tells me you're not processing everything we're saying.

    Set secrets aside for a moment, as clearly that is going nowhere. Let's look specifically at the magic world itself.

    Someone, let's call him Bill, sees a magic performance somewhere. He thinks it's pretty cool, so he starts looking up where to learn magic tricks. He finds some tutorials on YT, and learns a trick or two, and dedicates enough time to learning those tricks properly to perform it at the bar with his friends. He does alright, and enjoys the reactions, so he decides to learn more.

    As he's exploring YouTube and Facebook and such, he sees the people that are most respected in those environments teaching tricks, and giving very little credit (The best videos have credits in the style of, "It's in this book", said quickly at the end of the video). He sees people trading trick secrets back and forth. He sees these people standing up for revealing secrets, as if they are the Robin Hood of magic knowledge.

    To Bill, this is what the magic world is. That is the first model he is likely to be exposed to, so that is the model he will think is the reality.

    So what does that tell Bill?

    That to be respected, he should give away secrets. To be respected he should "invent" tricks and sell them, because that's what all the most respected people do. To be respected, he should have a massive collection of digital products that he can swap and trade and give away - because clearly, the entire value of magic is in the secrets you hold.

    Then Bill gets brave and starts performing for people outside his direct circle of friends. Maybe he wants to get a girl's number so he marches up to her at the bar, shoves a deck of cards in her face, and does a trick at her. She politely smiles and thanks him and then goes back to her friends.

    But he didn't do a good job - because his entire model for performance is dudes who just share secrets, nothing on how to actually perform and make it interesting or fun. She was bored moments into the trick but she's so conditioned not to be rude that she let him finish his trick. Maybe she gives him a fake number to get rid of him.

    Now she and her friends are going to spend the rest of the evening talking about the dope who thinks it's cool to do card tricks to random strangers at the bar, hoping to get a number. Maybe it was a small girl's night out, 4 of them just having a few drinks and blowing off steam from a long work week. That's 4 people who now are certain that magic is a stupid ploy thirsty dudes use to hit on women.

    Say two of those women go home, and the next day they're gossiping with their siblings about how this lame dude tried to pick one of them up with a card trick. That's maybe three more people. So now we're up to 7 people who think magic is just stupid.

    Ever heard the phrase, 1 bad review wipes out 10 good reviews? 7 turns into 70 real fast.

    How many people who hear about lame magicians do you think are going to rush out and buy a ticket for a magic show down the road?

    The problem I have with exposure, and the culture of that sort of, 'entry-level' of magic has, has little to do with the chance of someone heckling my show. I'm a decent enough performer that heckling of any sort just isn't really a problem for me.

    No, it's that this environment encourages people to disrespect magic. It encourages people to share secrets, rather than develop performances. It creates bad magic. And the vast majority of magicians are in fact beginners and casual performers, which means the vast majority are just not that great.

    Which means the exposure and culture you're supporting right now, is the reason so many people think magic is stupid and for kids. The more you defend that, the more you're enforcing it to continue happening, because you are continuing the model.

    And yes, I do know it's not going away. Which is why I will continue to offer guidance in the way that I do - to encourage people to respect magic, and to learn from the sources that teach the skills that make good magic. Because every single magic performer is still the ambassador to magic to every single audience. One bad performer hurts us all, because it means everyone who sees that performer will have a negative opinion of magic and magic performance before they even set foot in a theater or see someone set up a street show.
  4. point cleared...
    Yeah, I guess I was harping on the secrets part too much :)
    But anyways, you are prolly correct. But all this has just started, the better teachers have just started coming out.
    So to be fair, let's give this a bit of time, right?
  5. It's not new, and it's never going away. Ever.

    There will always be people who are going to perpetuate this model. This thread is the perfect example of it.

    The only thing the internet has done is solidified a new level of "beginner". A sort of proto-beginner, who's entire education is based around things that they have put no real investment into, and yet think they know something.

    The only thing that can be done is to constantly strive to create original and creative performances that don't look like anything else out there, and to offer guidance to the few who actually show promise to develop into something more than YT tricksters.
  6. I think that it is not that big if a deal because if you are performing don’t tell them the name of the trick and that way they can not look it up.
  7. Not really tbh...this thread is just asking for people's views abt exposure---and as usual, everyone tried to change everyone's thoughts and no one succeeded---nobody is trying to justify exposure. Just because one is not criticising it is not equal to the fact one is justifying it.
    Yes, there might ALWAYS be those kind of people, but this thread does not point at that. This thread's goal (or what I think should be done) is to bring the extremists of both sides a bit down. Which means trying to change things for those who think it is COMPLETELY CORRECT to go and learn something on YT and those who think it is COMPLETELY WRONG to do so.
    The kind of people you are mentioning have a very high sense if their education and rights and stuff. We have more of a divided opinion here. As long as none of us start criticising each other as an individual, I don't think this thread stands for anything like that.
  8. Actually it kind of is. In the face of ambiguity, humans will generally assume the information agrees with whatever point they want it to agree with. In other words, if you're not explicitly opposed, you are implicitly in agreement.

    See also:


    These statements say that exposure is fine. That's not even the entire thread, I stopped after halfway through page 2.
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  9. First of, english is my second language so sometimes my point is probably not getting accross as well as I wished.

    Second, I am a hobbyist so my perception and views are not those of someone trying to make a living from magic and I am aware this has a big impact into my views on this topic.

    What I meant about exposure on youtube not being a problem is... I am not sure a lot of laymen go deep down the exposure rabbit hole. And those who do might be the type of people who can still enjoy a good show even if they know how it's done.

    But either way, as I wrote later on in the thread, information wants to be free. Access to methods on youtube is there and there is nothing we can do to change that as a community. The more important question is how can we deal with it, evolve in our ways of performing and stay relevant in this new day and age.

    EDIT: I am also more than willing to discuss this topic 1 to 1 in private messages if someone is more curious about my point of view or wants to share theirs.
    RealityOne likes this.
  10. Two things - I have nothing against someone who's a hobbyist. Often times, the hobbyists are the ones who drive magic forward, because they have more freedom to explore and invent, whereas professionals are worried about making sure they earn a living. No disrespect at all for the hobbyist here, you do your thing.

    Second, I don't worry about exposure from a laymen-calling-out-the-magician perspective. I am speaking entirely about how exposure effects the magic world itself. It teaches new magicians not to respect magic, and not to respect the creators who are putting material out.

    I just saw a post by Shawn Farquhar on Facebook about a guy on YouTube who puts up tutorial videos. Actual copyright infringement - posting the instructional video that comes with products. Shawn contacted the guy and asked him to remove it, and the guy's response was, "Everyone deserves to know these secrets, not just the people who have money. I will remove it for approx. 1 hour".

    That is extremely disrespectful. Shawn is one of the nicest, most generous, and creative guys in magic. The phrase, "he'd give you the shirt off his back" comes to mind. And as someone who has devoted huge amounts of time and energy to not only creating great magic, but helping other magicians with no expectation of benefit to himself, this is metaphorically spitting in his face.

    That's the culture that is being encouraged and fostered by the folks who are exposing magic on YouTube and other platforms. This is what every person who does not condemn exposure is supporting.

    That is what I object to.
  11. I think the question is whether it is a significant problem in magic. The responses in the thread provide a thorough discussion of the various disadvantages of exposure. Those disadvantages are: 1) adversely affecting our audiences (seeing magic as a game to guess the method); 2) adversely affecting performances (creating hecklers who think they know methods); 3) adversely affecting people's view of magic (having hacks who learned from YouTube turn people off from magic by their performances); 4) adversely affecting the people learning (bad technique, bad presentation, etc.); adversely affecting how those learning from YouTube will be treated differently by experienced magicians (i.e. not taken seriously and not helped out); 5) adversely affecting creators of magic (revealing secrets to marketed effects which reduces their income); and 6) adversely affecting those who learn magic from legitimate sources by increasing the prices (either to cover the reduced volume of purchase due to exposure or to put the real secrets out of reach of the people who would expose magic) . We've also discussed how for some of us, YouTube doesn't have an effect because we have delved deeply into learning methods and presentation. The only advantages put forward is that it gets people into magic and it is an inexpensive way to learn magic.

    I think there is agreement on the advantages and disadvantages but it is difficult to quantify the effect. How many people watch exposure videos and then become difficult spectators trying to guess the method? How many people would pursue learning magic if they had just seen a performance video rather than an exposure video?

    "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." Edmund Burke

    On an individual level, there doesn't seem to be a problem with viewing exposure videos on YouTube. However, on an aggregate level, giving those views pushes the people exposing magic to push the limits and expose more and more magic.

    The point I'm trying to make is don't encourage them by viewing those videos. They really don't help your progress as a magician.

    Information is inanimate. It has no desires. People may want information to be free, but information is indifferent towards its freedom.

    What we can do is discourage people from going to those sites and giving them views. We can encourage people to post comments on sites that expose marketed magic effects telling them that it is disrespectful. We can report sites that pirate magic videos. We can direct people to better sources of learning - saying learn from these sources rather than saying don't learn from YouTube. We can encourage people to focus more on presentation and character than method.

    To back up @ChristopherT's point... I'm a hobbyist. That doesn't exempt me from caring about the larger state of affairs in magic.

    I think this is where a lot of this shakes out. Although I can see others points about the benefits, I still think that EXPOSURE IS NOT OK. There may be nothing we can do about it (I think there is based on my above list) but that doesn't make it OK. There may be exceptions to some of the disadvantages, but that doesn't make it OK. My belief is that if you are serious about magic, you shouldn't do anything to support or encourage exposure.

    How about this for common ground - the more experienced you are in magic, the less relevant YouTube becomes - both in learning and in performance.

    I'll take it a step further (and I suspect you currently don't agree) and say that the more experienced you are in magic, the more you realize that exposure in any form is harmful and should not be encouraged. Check back with me in a couple of years and let's see if your opinion changes.
  12. I am sorry, but I dunno why you'd do it, tbh...
    I said,
    "Whoa whoa...first off...if we are talking about exposure, then atleast let us list the good exposers out there!!!
    I'd rather die before learning a trick from WikiHow or Wikipedia!"
    (I have quoted it EXACTLY, in fact I have copied it from my post)
    Clearly, I am being sarcastic.
    It's like if someone tells me abt the Blue Whale Challenge or something and I tell them,"At least list a better suicide option! I'd rather be heavily depressed than play Blue Whale and die like an idiot! "

    And that does NOT mean I am supporting anything negative! I am being against BOTH of them, but in a way that is sarcastic. So I actually meant that,
    "Exposure, as it is, is bad enough. And now EVEN AMONG THE ONES ALREADY DOING THIS BAD STUFF, you are listing the worst ones out there???"

    Then I said, to king damian,
    "No one likes their work being exposed. I am with you when you say,
    (it gives me strong U.S. and French Revolution vibes tbh...freedom is a fundamental right!!!)
    But I would not think on those lines if someone stopped me during my performance saying, "Oh I know how that's done...saw it on YouTube...but I won't spoil it for you, go on!"....."

    Again, I am trying to be funny when I say whatever I said in all caps! The way he said it did make it sound as if someone has been really cruel and is taking away rights if people. So I tried to bring that sentiment in what I said, alongside implying that, "Mate, it is not as serious as you think it is..."

    Also, this is my post again,
    "Exposure is not a problem at all in magic. I have seen people who see magic tutorials (click-bait,they did not ask for it) and should know about the DL, even they get fooled by the simplest of tricks heavily employing a DL. They may find out WHAT can be done...but they will never find out WHEN it is done. Simply because magicians don't always employ a sleight for the same purpose."

    Now, I don't think it is a good approach to take my own words, exclude whatever I really wanted to say and include what was not the main idea of my post. I was agreeing with you guys quite a bit, tbh...and then, you go ahead and...
  13. The problem is that you are not understanding what your words sound like to other people.

    You don't think about the possible impact of your 'jokes', which are easily misconstrued by anyone looking to justify or reinforce their own preconceived ideas, as I've just shown.

    In short - you don't yet have the experience in the magic world to realize that you are in fact reinforcing systemic problems that exist in this culture.

    AND - you're still not seeing the fact that I'm not talking about audience members interrupting a show by saying possible methods or even saying they will look up a method. You're cherry picking the parts of the conversation YOU want to cling to, to justify your own position.

    There's really nothing else to say in that regard. I've made it abundantly clear why I oppose all exposure and why I think there are no good "exposers" on YouTube or anywhere else on the internet. You're not even responding to that concept, you're just circling back to your original idea that it won't hurt performers.
  14. I think it was pretty clear it was sarcasm, first off.

    Second, I don't understand the part where you are claiming I am circling back to ANYTHING...because I said absolutely nothing in my previous post. I just explained what I had meant in the posts you had quoted selected lines from.

    I made no further new points or arguments.
  15. It was not. Text does not convey tone or sarcasm. When you are not explicitly clear in text, you are at the mercy of those who are reading your texts to interpret it however they want. Therefore, your words have conveyed a meaning you possibly never meant them to - but the words are out there now and they contribute to an existing problem by reinforcing the normality and acceptability of it.

    Again, lack of experience.

    And you are correct - you have made no new additions to the discussion, you only keep repeating yourself and not responding to the points currently being discussed.
    ChrisJGJ likes this.
  16. I'll play devil's advocate to generate discussion.

    1) According to Joshua Jay's research thing, ten percent of our audience enjoy magic because they want to solve it. Another twelve percent like not knowing how a trick is done. So if you perform something they can't look up on YouTube (or maybe they can, but you hide it well) then you have 22 percent of your audience ready to enjoy your performance. I don't think YouTube exposure affects our audience as much as we think it does unless you're performing some overused material. And I can only really think of a handful of things that are overused and often exposed on YouTube.

    2) I don't think YouTube exposure can create a heckler. A heckler is a heckler. It may give them more ammunition, but I don't see how watching an exposure video will turn a person into an a-hole. The heckler will spit out false methods if he doesn't know how it's done, and if he does know how it's done then he spits out correct methods. Either way, as a performer, you deal with it the same.

    3) Mmmm. I'm reaching on this one for sure lol, but here it goes. If a spectator sees a lame magician, I don't think they will necessarily be turned off to magic. They will probably feel some second-hand embarrassment, think the performer was a weirdo, and move on. When I see someone dancing hella awkward, or playing a guitar badly for money, it doesn't turn me off to dance/musical performances. I'm turned off by the person, but not the genre. Maybe that's just me.

    4) I have to agree and disagree on this. Bad technique? Sure I can see that. Learning from a 12 yr old from Asia is not ideal, and even those who are pretty good at sleight of hand aren't necessarily going to be good teachers.

    Bad presentation? Uhh. The way tricks are presented in beginner magic books are pretty dated and lame. Presentation can only really get better by developing one's creativity, practicing, performing, and utilizing some non-magic sources. Don't blame YouTube for bad presentation.

    5) You win. This alone is why I don't think any proponent for YouTube exposure will ever win this argument.

    6) Ehh some what related to 5.
    RealityOne likes this.
  17. The difference is that you will likely see dozens of musicians and dancers. So when you hear about a singer, you have lots of memories of other singers to compare to, and you can recognize nuance of different genres and styles.

    Most people will still only see a very small number of magicians in person in their lifetime. That means there's not much to compare to, and little nuance. So when someone finds out there's a magician performing, they remember the last performer they saw, if they've seen one, and that will have a huge impact on their decision. If the last magician they saw was lame, they will assume the next one will be, too. Every magician is fighting against that memory and has to prove that they are worth the risk of losing an hour or two of your life. That's why word of mouth is so valuable to magicians.

    Except YouTube doesn't even hint at the need for a real presentation. People learn by mimicking their instructors. If their instructors have no personality and no real presentation, that's how they will present their own performances, because that's what they've been taught.

    Then we circle back to the previous point about how crappy performances impact future decisions to see magicians by the audience members.
  18. I think lumping all youtube content producers in one big basket is a bigmistake. Like with books, the quality of content there varies a lot.

    Youtube is a platform... it's not a particular person or way of teaching / explaining things.
  19. I have generally made a point of stating that I have not seen the quality that I look for.

    There's varying degrees of competence in how physical moves are presented - but as I have stated many times in various posts, the physical portion of magic is maybe 10% of a good performance.

    The "best" tutorials I have seen still fail to address what's really important to the performance of good magic.

    And, further, even excellent tutorials would still perpetuate the attitudes that are currently prevalent regarding disrespect to creators and magic culture in general. It presents a model of the magic world where exposing methods and expecting information to be given without any compensation given to the creators is the norm.

    The more magic that is on YouTube the more drastic a disconnect between serious magicians and casual ones becomes, and the harder it becomes to make that crossing from one to the other.
  20. Know what? I feel like I'm all over this thread. I'm going to take a step back and not respond for a bit because I feel like I'm monopolizing things and that's not a good thing.
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