Bounty Hunters For Magic?

Bounty Hunters For Magic?

"... Or we will be forced to report your content and take legal action against you."

Then she blocked us. A blatant act of defiance. And in my opinion, acknowledgement that what she'd done was wrong - and she didn't care.

Okay, let's rewind.

Ekaterina, who exposes magic in 1 minute videos across YouTube and Instagram just blocked us.

We've now sent 7-day copyright takedowns to her YouTube channel for teaching content we own the rights to.

She's been on a meteoric rise lately - and that's fine, if she was doing it the right way. But the desperate need to feed the algorithm has forced her to take from our cookie jar.

Back in May I wrote a blog post about Exposure in Magic.

"The sad reality is, the fastest way to gain likes and subscribers online is exposing magic or showing your ass.

Mix magic exposure with a pretty girl and you’ve got jet fuel for your fame fire."

Although Ekaterina's content is all tasteful, it's clear to see the first part is the playbook. Expose secrets to build an audience, then sell that huge audience on her playing cards.

And we wouldn't have a problem with it, if all the secrets she was exposing were with permission. But they're not.

Ellusionist maintains royalties or buyout contracts with artists. So either we pay upfront to own the tutorial video, or the artist can opt to take a share of every sale.

When Ekaterina teaches something we sell, she's stealing from us, or the artist - or both.

I think there is a right way if you're hell bent on exposing magic online:

  •  if it's public domain
  •  created by the artist who's teaching it
  •  owned contractually by the person distributing it
  •  or shared with the permission of the creator themselves

But Ekaterina isn't always doing that. She's sharing published items, that are owned by us (or by the artists we pay royalties to).

Every view for her is money stolen from our or the creator's pocket.

... AND STOLEN FROM YOU

If I make you pay for a drink... but the next 100 people get to sip it for free, then you're out of pocket too.

As a legitimate, honest, supportive buyer - you're being stolen from.

Because your moral code made you pay to learn it and others are getting it for nothing.

That in itself should motivate you to help police this community.

It's definitely something we're not going to allow.


COMPETITORS

You may think the world's biggest magic companies, like Murphys, Theory11 & PenguinMagic are our biggest competitors. But they're not even on our radar, YouTube is.

Because in a poll we did about 'where people learn magic if it's not from us?' the response with over 30% of the vote was YouTube.

Now YouTube is great, if you're subscribing to Daniel Madison for example. A guy who's been there, done that - and has the skills & decades of teaching experience to back it up.

Or it's great if you're on a budget and you want to learn something that's public domain, like a double lift, or a pass. We have no issues.

But when it's used to teach content that's behind our paywall (or the paywall of other artists) - it's crossed the line.


BOUNTY HUNTERS

Here's what we're going to do.

We're going to pay the magic community to Police itself.

"A bounty hunter is a private agent who captures criminals for a commission or bounty."


Submit links from YouTube or instagram to support@ellusionist.com with the subject line 'Bounty Hunter' if you feel like someone has infringed upon a secret we sell, or they're just using our videos.

We will add it to a spreadsheet and give you an official 'bounty'. It could be $20, $50, $100 or $1,000 - depending on the size of the offender.

Report it, follow-up and show us proof that it's been taken down - and we'll pay you via PayPal.

Now I must express, you cannot weaponize the copyright strike or takedown process. These need to be greenlit by us to ensure they are actually infringing upon our content. So don't go reporting everyone's videos for fun. It won't result in a payout.

It's also worth mentioning...

Ellusionist isn't the arbiter of justice for all of magic. We can only pass judgement on the legal infringements of our content. So let's remain cold, but kind when it comes to these takedowns. We will take what's rightfully ours - and leave the rest be. 

If other magic shops want to join in, they can contact me (Geraint Clarke) directly - they all have my number/email.


Let's go!

p.s. for any copyright infringers, if you want to avoid copyright strikes, you can remove the offending content yourself. 

p.p.s. We won't be paying out bounties for channels or profiles with zero (or close to zero) views or subs. So you can't just upload and report on yourself to collect cash. These need to be legitimate offenders.  

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11 comments

Wesley

Wesley

It sad to see copyright infringement or outright theft of IP is still alive and well. I remember several years back there were numerous articles bringing this to magicians (hobbyist and pros alike) attention. It didn’t seem to eradicate the problem, but it did appear it lessened.

There is a distinct objective scale of copying someone else’s art or ideas then calling it their own. For instance, no one can copy a novel about a hotel left in the care of a man with his wife and kid. When the man goes psycho and the kid has psychic abilities, no amount of changing names or situations can justify it as someone else’s art to claim as their own.

It’s nice to see someone taking some positive action to combat this.

David Brown

David Brown

What about other bigger more popular channel like: Chris Ramsey; Spidey; Alex Pandrea; Lloyd Barnes

Tyler Rabbit

Tyler Rabbit

This is excellent! I just made a video explaining why revealing magic is dumb and I called her out: https://youtu.be/uNp_smDOL0M

Andrew

Andrew

It sounds weird that one could take legal action against someone for recreating an art, or expanding upon it. Art is based on stealing ideas from other artists. So, this area is extremely grey. There isn’t an objective scale.

Jesse Case

Jesse Case

This does not surprise me at all! I had never heard of this Ekaterina lady until a few weeks ago when I watched a video from, I believe Murphy’s, about splitting cards to make gaffs and she was the teacher. Given how she acted in that video I’m not surprised a bit that she would believe that she is entitled to teach and expose other people’s stuff. First of all she continuously insulted, belittled, and talked down to the host guy, treating him like he was absolutely stupid and beneath her. You could tell it was really starting to make him uncomfortable and as she was starting to get more comfortable she was piling it on more and more as the video went on. Then also she showed that she is absolutely in love with herself! The arrogance and self centeredness was just dripping off of her. She went on and on about how valuable she is, how valuable her time is, and openly admitted that she charges quite a lot more than other magicians, but she doesn’t care because she is worth it and people pay it. She is so impressed with and full of herself, and she clearly has a huge superiority complex. I was so disgusted and turned off by her behavior that I didn’t even finish the video. Like I said, I had never heard of her prior to that video, but I can absolutely guarantold you that that will be the last video I ever watch that she is in. So yeah I’m not surprised a bit and I would bet you that she not only believes that she is in the right, but also that she is entitled to and deserving of teaching and exposing anything she wants to!

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