Saturday Night Contest : What You Think

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by The Dark Angel, Jul 3, 2008.

  1. #541 Steerpike, Nov 24, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 24, 2013
    Trouble is, I'm starting to suspect that we're not the ones they're trying to reach. We're no longer the target market. And in some cases, some of us never were.

    I'm done complaining about this. There was that brief moment where they seemed to take complaints to heart. I almost got banned for it, but there seemed to be a change in the way things were being done. Now I have this nagging suspicion that they spoke up when they did, because they knew they had a couple of non-lotto contests already scheduled and coming down the pike, so the timing would make it seem as if they were taking the advice on-board.

    Think about it. The release schedule is planned out months in advance, if not more than a year. And they probably have the contests scheduled months in advance as well. Notice that they seldom use a lotto when it's tied to a hyped up release. Why would they disrupt that schedule to appease what, for all intents and purposes, appears to be only a vocal minority?

    No, this is not going to get fixed anytime soon, because those of us who complain have zero influence over this company or how they run their community. So I'm done. I'm not going to click on the contests anymore because I know they're not for me and they're most likely not going to get any better. So what if half the people entering these contests are only registering accounts for a shot at free stuff. The numbers look good on paper, and I guess they think that's good enough.

    Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.
  2. #542 Lyle Borders, Nov 24, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 25, 2013
    Hey guys!

    I've got to step in here. There are some serious accusations being thrown at theory11 that are simply not true in any sense. I have multiple points to respond to, so I apologize in advance for the long reply.

    TylerRouss - Check your PMs for further discussion on this topic. I won't clutter up this conversation with my specific points that are for you specifically.

    We have been accused several times recently that we do not care about or listen to the members of our community. As Tyler put it "Your utter lack of empathy for this community is mind boggling." This is something that deeply bothers me. Thankfully we have only heard this from a vocal minority, but I will address this here and now.

    theory11 has hosted a weekly Saturday Night Contest every week for several years now. 52 contests per year. Do you understand that number? This is 52 nights a year occupying out team's time in preparing, running, and judging these contests (sometimes this takes longer than one night for a contest, but that is not important). We also are putting out there 52 prize packages a year. We frequently give away six packs, bricks, new tricks, or even release bundles, costing anywhere from $5 (for a limited edition deck) up to a couple hundred dollars, depending on the prize, EVERY WEEK, 52 weeks a year. SNCs are very expensive to host every week. What does it cost you to enter these contests? Only the time required to prepare your entry. If we didn't care, if we didn't empathize with you all, these contests would not exist. Period. We put these contests out there to help grow the community and to give back to the people who made theory11 what it is today.

    We hear sometimes that we don't take any suggestions from our members. This could not be further from the truth. Recently it was suggested that we offer 1st and 2nd place prizes. While we don't do it with every contest, we have started to offer 2nd place prizes. This is 100% from a suggestion, and would have not happened if it was not for the suggestion. Also, we have heard that we run too many "lottery" style contests. The contest last night was one of these. How often do we do this style of contest? Go back and look through all the contests since August. 17 contests in total, 4 of these were lottery style "guess the card" kinds of contests. This means that there are THIRTEEN contests of other sorts. We have actively been reducing the number of lottery style contests because it was suggested that we do more contests of other sorts. To say that we aren't listening to suggestions like this is simply not true.

    We do the lottery style contests because they are easy for people to enter, they are fun, and they drive a LOT of people into the forums. Does every person who enters end up participating in the forums long term? Of course not. Some of them, however, do indeed end up joining the forums. Calling the people who enter the contests like this "leeches" is harmful to the community. People have to come to the forums before they can participate. If you don't like these contests, don't participate. Simple as that. You would miss out on less than 1/4 of the contests by simply skipping these. We try to mix up our contests to interest the various kinds of people here. Nobody expects you to be involved in every contest, as each contest has a specific focus.

    If you hate the idea of the lottery style contests, you best be on your way. We WILL be continuing these contests (though at a lesser rate as per suggestions) because, firstly, they are fun and they get a massive response, and secondly, because they are our contests, our giveaways, and our generosity. We reserve the right to host the contests that we feel to be best for the goals of theory11 and the community. These contests give EVERYONE, including people who don't have access to a camera or video recording software, the chance to participate, and these contests will not go away.

    The issue of these kinds of contests has been brought to our attention and we have addressed this feedback. Let this dead horse rest, the conversation has been heard, understood, and responded to in our best judgment. We have already adjusted how we do these contests. There is no reason to fling insults and accusations at theory11 for giving away thousands of dollars in free merchandise to our members.

    Steerpike - You posted "There was that brief moment where they seemed to take complaints to heart. I almost got banned for it, but there seemed to be a change in the way things were being done." You almost being banned was in regard to your persistent negativity on the forums, both to theory11 and to members of the community, an issue I have already addressed with you in private. I now have to clarify in public because you are trying to use this to paint theory11 in a negative light. We listen to feedback and use it whenever we can, but negativity like that is not welcome here at all.

    Thanks guys.

    // L
  3. Yeah, we've had that conversation. But lately I can't shake this niggling doubt that's only part of the story. Oh, I don't doubt that Andrei and Bayme want to strangle me for my confrontational tone and predilection for certain 4-letter words. I just get the feeling there's a little bit more to it than that.

    Hardly matters at this point. Like I said, you guys won. I don't have the energy or the will to continue this particular fight. It's not worth the headaches and none of you have any real reason from a business perspective to listen to me, because I'm just one dude and I've only ever bought one thing from you anyway. That's not bitterness or the ever-dreaded "negativity." That's the reality that I was egotistical enough to ignore.

    So I'm done. You win. You guys run the contests however you please, and I'll just go back to pretending they don't exist. Now if your problem is that I'm portraying the company in too negative a light and want to give your side of the story, that's fine. If your problem is that I have a negative opinion of the company, that's unfortunate.
  4. Sorry Steerpike, that's literally the whole story. There's no conspiracy theory, alternate agenda, or super secret alliance to control the world's supply of gummy bears. You were almost banned because of persistent negativity and disrespectful conduct towards theory11 and our members. That will not be tolerated now, or any time in the future. So understand that, and leave it be. Thanks. Onward and upwards.
  5. These are all great ideas and good feedback, X$idh. For Instagram, we've acted on this immediately - our Halloween themed video contest for magic and cardistry with a spooky, eerie vibe. We'll absolutely be doing much more like that in the future - it's a cool challenge that encourages creativity, with a specific style in mind. The Halloween contest had some outstanding submissions.
  6. There was an idea similar to this posted earlier but here is my thoughts on a contest:
    you could give us a list of basic effects or moves that we have to create a routine with. I think it would be a lot of fun and would also challenge our creativity and skill.
  7. Yes, that's the official answer. But I never actually said there was a conspiracy. I just think there are certain things we're not saying aloud because of the social contract. It'll remain one of those persistent little shoulder devils until things change. Whenever that may be. For now, I will attempt to remember my place in the pecking order here as it's been made quite explicit.
  8. Like this idea a lot - having a list of components, sleights and moves, and the challenge is to come up with the best possible presentation or routine that use all of those pieces together. This will happen!
  9. Thanks to the whole team for providing these free, weekly events for over 6 years without a hiccup. As someone with only a handful of magic friends in real life, it has been an invaluable option for me to have access to an online community with such integrity and transparency. :)

    @Steerpike - I think I speak for most people reading this when I remind you that there's no shame in showing gratitude towards people that provide you with a free place to hang out at and share ideas. You don't have to agree with everything they decide to do, and that's perfectly fine. Your thoughts are heard loud and clear. You have to understand that your posts can be mean and toxic sometimes. I don't intend to sound condescending, but what good comes from posts like this? You feel bad afterwards and you make others feel bad. This place is outstanding... why not focus your energy towards contributing to it rather than purposefully derailing it.

    I also like InfiniteMagic's idea, and a fun application might be to explore combinations with The Code. For example, I've been using it with the invisible deck non-stop since I got it. For those of you who own it, think about how it can be used to remove/replace a common step from the standard invisible deck routine to help make it seem even more impossible than it already is. :)
  10. There's a long and convoluted answer to that, but airing that in public isn't really appropriate and also because this is the internet. Since it's all text and none of us truly know each other that well, my attempts would most likely come across poorly. PM me if you actually want to know, but to repeat this is not the time or the place to let my brain vomit my baggage into the screen.

    You know what's weird? I only just had a small epiphany. I'll spare you the details, but I think I've figured out why so few people ever seem to remember all the threads I've started, the advice I've given, the people I've helped. Why a few dirty words seem more remarkable than everything else I've done. You would think with all the research I've done on psychology and marketing, I would have figured this out sooner. Huh.
  11. Remember when it is a free service you are the product.

    I had a a Canadian friend of mine ask why there no skill test on the guessing game SNC for those folks in Canada land.
  12. Didn't mean to suggest that you don't make any quality posts. Of course that's not true! :) I can respect that the conversation isn't something you feel needs to be public, I wholeheartedly agree, and I'm happy to leave it at that. Just wanted to give me two cents and I'm grateful that you took the time to read my thoughts and reply back with mutual respect.

    That's one way to look at it, albeit a little cynical. Another way is that you are supporting people who you trust and want to keep in business because they do their best to help provide and connect you with quality ideas and thinkers. You can be a member of these forums and never purchase a single item from them, and you can even win free products or tricks with minimal to moderate participation. Alternatively, you can also go to the magic cafe, kardistry, dan & dave's forums, gennii and so one if you are looking for something else. Not sure why it has to be a philosophical debate on ethics when they increase their forum activity by offering up free prizes. It's smart, generous and fun. If you are somehow offended by it, then you don't participate.

    Anyways, I think we've all exhausted this discussion many times over and its perfectly fine to agree to disagree. Let's keep this on topic and those who are interested can focus on offering their ideas for upcoming Saturday Nights.

    Cheers :)
  13. #553 TylerRouss, Nov 26, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 26, 2013
    This post. Well done. I don't fully agree, but well done nonetheless.

    And TimSilva, agreeing to disagree only works on matters of opinion. But alas, your good vibe is inspiring. So yes. Some suggestions.

    Who can build the best story, performed or written, around one card. (like say, KD, write a story or a story trick about a rich king)

    The best "magical" flourish (ie impossible flourish)

    Best magic outfit/costume

    Best performance of gatorboots

    the first person to legitimately pull off the uh, "intitial idea" of gatorboots

    The best magic trick that is done over the phone

    funniest patter


    best borrowed deck effect

    Best color changing deck routine!

    Most.. applicable.. magic trick. As in, something that is both magical and actually useful outside of entertainment. Like, legitimately useful. Things like bill changes wouldn't count. Oh and nothing criminal lol. This idea comes from my coworkers always asking me to use magic to get our jobs done.

    Best use of sciency stuff! Tricks involving neat chemistry or physics.

    Best interactive magic trick! As in a trick that works on whoever is watching the video.

    Most radical use of a sharpie to achieve magic.

    Hey, why not, BEST CAMERA TRICK! Not editing, but something that could never be done in person. I just think we would get some hilarious entry's on this.

    And finally, I cannot emphasize enough the power of community judging. Massive participation? Done. Takes away from the time and effort required on the teams part? Done. Perfectly fair judgement? Done. Not a lotto? Done. Already have a system in place and ready to go? Done (poll votes).
  14. haha i agree.. lol :)
  15. You guys posting Saturday Night Contest ideas?! I like the random kind, that is the only way I ever won! lol.
  16. At what time does usually the Saturdaynight contest begin?
  17. #557 Gabriel Z., Dec 9, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 9, 2013
    I think the SNC is rigged lol j/k. Hope I don't get penalized on my next entry for saying this.
  18. Do a contest for:

    Create a card control, that fools the t11 judges.
  19. how do I enter in the saturday night contest?
  20. I Just realized this is a thing THIS Saturday. I posted my entry earlier and am excited to see what each Saturday in the future holds.
    I'm usually a perform, IN PERSON, kind of magician but i'm slowly transitioning into the world of "YouTube" magic.

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