What t11 Has Become

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The thread title says it all, I know a lot of us don't like T11 and a lot of us do. My question is, was anyone else really excited with what T11 promised all of us only to find out it is just another Ellusionist?

http://media.theory11.com/1387-What-Is-Theory11
(take specific note of Lee Asher at 1:21)

To be honest this is the video that really drew me to T11. It really seemed like the artists cared about the advancement of magic (and I believe they do), but as time has gone by it really seems like they have let a lot of us down, including (possibly) the artists.
http://www.theory11.com/beginners.php

I don't know, I feel like we all were played with the classic bait and switch. What do you guys think? Do you feel like it differs (at all) from Ellusionist? And if so how do you feel it is different? And if it is not any different, why is it seemingly more respected than Ellusionsit? Is it just the artists that are tied to the site that rarely appear except when they have a new product to push on this outlet?

The point of this thread is not just to bash, but to gain a better understanding of the general outlook on T11. It seems to be much more respected than E, and I am not sure why. I'd love to know your opinions.

thanks,
 
I don't usually spend my time at Ellusionist much if at all, nothing against E, I'm just to busy on T11 ;)
I have seen threads before about people complaining (I shouldn't say complaining as just giving their opinions) about T11, I for one can't give my opinion on which I prefer, E or T. From what I have read though is that people have problems with the forums the most. The way I look at it is that the site is only as good as the things that the community contributes to it.
If the members are not being active and putting up talkable threads than there will not be much room for good discussion, you only get out what you put in. From there I see that it isn't T11 fault if there isn't any discussions availiable. It isn't T11's job to maintain good threads.
I don't know how well I hit the topic here but thats just my thoughts.
 
Aug 31, 2007
803
1
I think what differs more between ellusionist and T11, and what I think is more important, are the artists part of the Theory11 community and crew. People like Chris Kenner, Jason England, Homer Liwag etc. Professional Magicians and the real masters of sleight of hand. Not only do we get to learn effects that these guys put out here, but we also have the opportunity to interact with these people, whether that be on the forums, via a SNC Podcast, or most recently meeting them at Magic-Con.

One other thing that I respect from T11 is the fact that they mostly sell DVDs that they have produced and made themselves, with the exception of a few items like Coin-One. There hasn't been a trick Ellusionist has put out for a long while that is produced and manufactured by Ellusionist.

Just my thoughts,

~Zach
 
Dec 14, 2007
823
2
What did this site promise you that actually could be delivered by a site, or a product sold on a site?

Seems to me improvement requires thought and work.

That means time alone - not buying things, not talking about things.
 
Oct 29, 2009
971
0
Just around
I think what differs more between ellusionist and T11, and what I think is more important, are the artists part of the Theory11 community and crew. People like Chris Kenner, Jason England, Homer Liwag etc. Professional Magicians and the real masters of sleight of hand. Not only do we get to learn effects that these guys put out here, but we also have the opportunity to interact with these people, whether that be on the forums, via a SNC Podcast, or most recently meeting them at Magic-Con.

One other thing that I respect from T11 is the fact that they mostly sell DVDs that they have produced and made themselves, with the exception of a few items like Coin-One. There hasn't been a trick Ellusionist has put out for a long while that is produced and manufactured by Ellusionist.

Just my thoughts,

~Zach
Hate to rain on some of your guys' parades, but what is your problem with E? E has one of my favorite forums, and they sell some pretty freakn' awesome stuff. What's with all the hate on E? People say the name like it's a laugh or a joke? Even you Zach, talk about how T11 is better than E...your a Mod! Come on guys! I enjoy both E and T11, and go on both frequently. You can't really compare them. E sells waaay more books, DVDs, and magic in general than T11. T11 sells awesome 1on1s with famous artists, which teach you cool sleights and some effects.

It's apples and oranges guys. Seriously.


Peace
 

timsilva

Elite Member
Nov 18, 2007
403
42
California
timsilva.com
Not sure how to approach this or how to start my response.

Yes, Theory11 is a business, and a successful one at the same time. I think you are comparing them to Ellusionist as a bad thing, but you are letting to many unfair variables influence your opinion. I think that Ellusionist and Theory11 are both excellent companies that teach and sell magic tutorials and products. I prefer Theory11 (in terms of community) because Bayme has emphasized a more direct network of communication between the artists and the members of this site, and that is something that, completely by itself, could easily have a price tag attached to it.

As for your comment/question about being "played", I can only mean you assume that we spend money on their products. If that is what you meant, than yes, they use well thought out marketing techniques, and they encourage people to purchase their products. We all have to survive, is it unethical to run a business and use cool preview videos to entise potential customers? I don't like money, but it is what our current society relies on to live, so I don't think it's Theory11's fault for being successful in the free market.

I have never been unhappy with a purchase from Theory11, and even if I was, once or twice, I would still shop here and come by the forums because of the other products I was happy with. It's too easy to critcize a company as transparent as they are.

One other thing that I respect from T11 is the fact that they mostly sell DVDs that they have produced and made themselves, with the exception of a few items like Coin-One. There hasn't been a trick Ellusionist has put out for a long while that is produced and manufactured by Ellusionist.

I'm not a big fan of comparing the two, because it doesn't really offer much. But objectively, you make an excellent point here Zach. Ever since the T11 branch-off in 2007, E's productions have drastically halted. I don't like their new production team as much, it less edgy and cool, aesthetically speaking.

But w/e, like I said, discussing this doesn't matter too much most of the time. Both great sites that I have bought from and will buy from again. I love magic & flourishing too much to care anyways. :D
 
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Feb 16, 2009
217
0
South Bend, IN
The thread title says it all, I know a lot of us don't like T11 and a lot of us do. My question is, was anyone else really excited with what T11 promised all of us only to find out it is just another Ellusionist?

Why did you think T11 would be radically different from Ellusionist? I mean, the basic business model of both is nearly the same. Their target audiences are the same (for the most part). Their approach to marketing is very similar. Given all these similarities, why would their evolution be different?

I'm not too worried about the way things have evolved because I think it was inevitable. T11 is focused on releasing 1on1s and DVDs and special edition playing cards. They realize that these are the profitable avenues in magic today and this is what you will get from them.

I don't know, I feel like we all were played with the classic bait and switch. What do you guys think? Do you feel like it differs (at all) from Ellusionist? And if so how do you feel it is different? And if it is not any different, why is it seemingly more respected than Ellusionsit? Is it just the artists that are tied to the site that rarely appear except when they have a new product to push on this outlet?

Maybe you misunderstood what you were getting here. To be honest, the artists are really busy with a ton of other stuff. Many of these guys perform or consult for other performers. They go on lecture tours and release new material every now and then. It's hard to expect them to be on the forums interacting with us regularly.

Also, I don't know where you got the idea that T11 is more respected than E. Try asking that question on the Magic cafe or the Genii forums and see what answers you get.

The forums are a place where interesting discussions still take place, but not as frequently. If you can catch posts by guys like William Draven, Morgician, Romeo Sierra and Steerpike (just ignore the abusive language in his case), you will get some useful information. I wish Praetoritevong would post more often. As a rule of thumb, compare the advice these guys give with the advice available elsewhere and take whatever suits you.

The point of this thread is not just to bash, but to gain a better understanding of the general outlook on T11. It seems to be much more respected than E, and I am not sure why. I'd love to know your opinions.

thanks,

I really doubt T11 is much more respected than E. Maybe people respect the fact that experts like Jason England and Chris Kenner release 1 on 1s here regularly, but that's different.
 
Dec 14, 2007
823
2
E made a huge mistake early on releasing tricks without credit or permission. Likewise, the approach of piggybacking the sales of (others;) secrets on the david blaine specials may have been smart business but ethically predatory. Many magicians in the established community look upon them with derision.

Theory 11 handled their first ethical issue forthrightly and to the satisfaction of all parties. They are comprised largely of people who respect the historical record and have not engaged in predetory repackaging in the name of 'street magic'.
 

j.bayme

ceo / theory11
Staff member
Jul 23, 2007
2,808
247
New York City
Few things I would like to add to this discussion. Firstly, and as a summary answer to the core question originally posted: theory11 is different because this is a site physically run by some of the most respected names in this industry. Our entire team is made up of working magicians and industry leading consultants and producers - from Chris Kenner to Jason England to Dan White to Apollo Robbins. No other site comes close.

Secondly, and unapologetically, this is a business. The livelihood of our company, artists, and staff members depend wholeheartedly upon sale of our products. We produce products we believe in, and our production pipeline is second to none. Do other sites have more products available? Absolutely - but they don't produce them all in house. We do.

Thirdly, I think this site does more to advance the artform than pretty much any other commercial entity in this industry:

- We've produced over 16 hours of podcasts from 31 artists available free, and updated every single month, with THE best names in this industry - with questions submitted directly by our members. This stuff is worth it's weight in gold - but information alone won't advance your performance ability. As Brad Henderson noted, that can only come from within. We can't make you better. But we can give you the tools you need to do so.

- We post artist diary videos, offering a personal, direct window into the lives of our artists. Some are funny, some are serious, but all are engaging.

- We update our 1-on-1 training section 3-4 times every month, with contributions from some of the most rarely seen and eclectic artists in the industry. We've released over 110 1-on-1 training videos to date. We produce each of these videos in unrivaled quality and detail - and we have consistently improved our content offering in direct response to YOUR feedback.

- We emphasis and prioritize history and correct crediting. The majority of our 1-on-1's begin and end with a thorough section on historical relevance of the material being taught - including guidance of where you could and should look for additional study. Books, manuscripts, and magazines.

- We've released 8 decks of playing cards to date, not including the Split Spades, which we were the first to unveil and given the privilege of producing the official preview of. We were the first to get Cardistry recognized as an artform on US Playing Card's official site - which address is printed on every new deck of Bicycle playing cards sold worldwide.

- We sponsored and organized, alongside Dan and Dave and Syd Segal, what has been called the most significant magic conference in the past decade, with the best line-up of artists, intellects, and speakers in recent memory.

And while we're doing all of that, we have fun. This is a large site - more active than any other - but it is run by a very small and very passionate core team. We are human. We're a family. And we are not perfect.

We always have about 15 things in the works at once. We will make mistakes. We have before and will again. But every time we have, and every time we will, we have corrected it in a manner transparent, honest, and sincere. We suck at a LOT of things. But I think our triumphs have far overcome our defeats, and we will only get better in time.

In summary, to each his own. We may not be everyone's cup of tea just yet. We've got a lot in the works. And in the meantime, we're listening, and we're learning - and above all else, I think that is what sets us apart.
 
Few things I would like to add to this discussion. Firstly, and as a summary answer to the core question originally posted: theory11 is different because this is a site physically run by some of the most respected names in this industry. Our entire team is made up of working magicians and industry leading consultants and producers - from Chris Kenner to Jason England to Dan White to Apollo Robbins. No other site comes close.

Secondly, and unapologetically, this is a business. The livelihood of our company, artists, and staff members depend wholeheartedly upon sale of our products. We produce products we believe in, and our production pipeline is second to none. Do other sites have more products available? Absolutely - but they don't produce them all in house. We do.

Thirdly, I think this site does more to advance the artform than pretty much any other commercial entity in this industry:

- We've produced over 16 hours of podcasts from 31 artists available free, and updated every single month, with THE best names in this industry - with questions submitted directly by our members. This stuff is worth it's weight in gold - but information alone won't advance your performance ability. As Brad Henderson noted, that can only come from within. We can't make you better. But we can give you the tools you need to do so.

- We post artist diary videos, offering a personal, direct window into the lives of our artists. Some are funny, some are serious, but all are engaging.

- We update our 1-on-1 training section 3-4 times every month, with contributions from some of the most rarely seen and eclectic artists in the industry. We've released over 110 1-on-1 training videos to date. We produce each of these videos in unrivaled quality and detail - and we have consistently improved our content offering in direct response to YOUR feedback.

- We emphasis and prioritize history and correct crediting. The majority of our 1-on-1's begin and end with a thorough section on historical relevance of the material being taught - including guidance of where you could and should look for additional study. Books, manuscripts, and magazines.

- We've released 8 decks of playing cards to date, not including the Split Spades, which we were the first to unveil and given the privilege of producing the official preview of. We were the first to get Cardistry recognized as an artform on US Playing Card's official site - which address is printed on every new deck of Bicycle playing cards sold worldwide.

- We sponsored and organized, alongside Dan and Dave and Syd Segal, what has been called the most significant magic conference in the past decade, with the best line-up of artists, intellects, and speakers in recent memory.

And while we're doing all of that, we have fun. This is a large site - more active than any other - but it is run by a very small and very passionate core team. We are human. We're a family. And we are not perfect.

We always have about 15 things in the works at once. We will make mistakes. We have before and will again. But every time we have, and every time we will, we have corrected it in a manner transparent, honest, and sincere. We suck at a LOT of things. But I think our triumphs have far overcome our defeats, and we will only get better in time.

In summary, to each his own. We may not be everyone's cup of tea just yet. We've got a lot in the works. And in the meantime, we're listening, and we're learning - and above all else, I think that is what sets us apart.
I would have to agree with JB on a lot of things, and not cuz its his site and not to be on his good side. The thing that really seperates E and T11 is the fact that their styles of magic is different. Theory11, unlike most magic sites teaches us how to be working pro's. How to improve on what we do and where we are. Most sites only sell magic. Theory 11 promotes variety. Before T11, I really wasn't looking at a lot of flourishing promoted on other sites. It was a mere sideshow.

Like JB stated, there are other websites with more products. True, but they are in house. I'm not piggybacking on what he said, its just a fact that it sticks out. I personally think T11, is incomparable to other sites because of the differences. The only comparison is the fact that they are magic sites. Thats it.

In all fairness to the orginal poster,You are right about "some" of the artists and the interaction with us. But, you can't judge all artists the same. I've had more interaction with Lee Asher than any magician on this site. So for me to say that these guys won't have a word with us is false. I would say that I wish that it was more Lee Ashers on this site. Danny Garcia probably wouldn't say a word to me if i was die'n in front of his face. But i can't hold that against the entire T11 staff. So some of what the guy said is true. Some is completely false and really a matter of his opinion.
 
Feb 9, 2008
37
0
BUFFALO, NY
Not once have I ever....EVER...been dissapointed with a purchase from Theory 11! I am very satisified with what they have to offer me! When they put something out i know it well be decent if not good!

Too many times have I been burned by Ellusionist with the crap they put out. I thought I would give them another try when they released Serial Biller by Craig Ferguson but alas, once again I got screwed when I discovered you can't do the effect without finding something special that YOU WILL NEVER FIND! All their crappy coin in bottle effects that look great on camera that you could never do impromptu in front of a paying crowd! They will never get another dime of my money unless I feel like buying a deck of cards that my audience members will think is a trick deck!

And yes, I make my living performing magic in case any of you are wondering. The 1-on-1's are exceptional, especially by Jason England whom I had the pleasure of meeting 9 years ago on the set of Shade! Theory 11 continues to break boundaries for new and old magicians and I commend them on the great job they are doing! Keep the 1-on-1's coming guys. YOU ROCK!!
 
Sep 30, 2009
272
0
47
Elkhart, IN
I would just like to say on my behalf...This site Rocks! I think you guys are doing a wonderful job. I like the Forums, the 1-on-1's are great and the products that I have purchesed are great teaching tools.

One thing I would like to see (I know everyone gets bussy) is more from the guys that got me hooked on your site like Chris Kenner, Aaron Fisher, Dan & Dave...don't get me wrong, I like all the new guys too. Just would like to see something new from the people that helped me get back into magic.

Note: I have not been to "E" site that much. Nor have I been to their forums so I can not give my opion on them at this time.
 
Oct 29, 2009
971
0
Just around
Seriously guys. This E bashing is immature and stupid. I've never once had a problem with them, and they ship fast too. Their forums are pretty dang good too. I don't see what some of you guy have to pick with E. Both companies are great. That's all there is to it.


Cheers
 
Apr 5, 2009
874
1
26
Illinois
why get so worked up? go where you want and leave everyone else where they want to be.

JB pretty much stated my thoughts. T11 has made a major impact on the industry from what i can see, and he stated every way they did it. IN BULLET FORM NO LESS!!!

Web Gehring
 

timsilva

Elite Member
Nov 18, 2007
403
42
California
timsilva.com
@jb - Nice, thoughtful response. You guys have accomplished a lot. I feel like contemporary magic has been significantly influenced, world-wide, by you and your small team. I also believe that this influence is only just starting now. On a personal level, as a magician who just started in 2006, I am extremely grateful for this place (and others too of course).

I am a lover of technology and the web, but I know from personal experience that the technology alone cannot make a movement within a particular community happen to this large of an extent. Without passionate members of a community stepping up to the plate, the tools of the internet are essentially useless.
 
Feb 5, 2010
157
0
I dont see why people bash E. My roots in magic came from E and most of the tricks i perform i got from E. Both T11 and E are great sites. Sure I dont do much on the E fourms but i dont use the fourms much on here either. I even remember hearing that JB started on E.
 
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