A lot of people think James L Clark is being tough on Duane Lundgren and the others who run magic torrent sites.
Let's take a moment to look at what these guys are doing to magic.
Art of Misdirection (AOM) is a "torrent site", which means it invites members to join and upload copies of magic DVDs that they have purchased, and add them to the pool. Then they can download as many copies of other DVDs from that pool as they like.
ExoMagic was doing this too, until James L Clark intervened. He has also closed down half a dozen similar sites since then.
Unsurprisingly, some members of ExoMagic still don't think "file-sharing" is doing anything wrong. They started a petition as soon as the torrent section of ExoMagic closed down describing it a "learning environment".
"Sign this petition to state to the magic world that you are willing to band together to continue the legacy of ExoMagic, teaching those who truly desire to learn the art that we all love. Sign to tell the world that you are proud to be a magician and are willing to work towards the advancement of magic. Sign here if you are willing to work together with the rest of us to create once again an active learning environment here. Sign here to help us make ExoMagic a great place once again. Sign to say that you haven't given up.*"
While discussing the difference between AOM and another torrent site, AOM Killer, people said
"well, i'm not a member in any of them but AOM is the original tracker and is older than the other one which means it should be have more stuff.*"
"I can't tell you if AOM has more torrents as I am not a member at AOM-killer, but this morning AOM had 1995 torrents. Don't know about AOM-k but AOM has great staff and the whole site is really friendly.*"
"I've been trying to get into AoM for ages. I have a few things that am pretty positive don't exist in electronic form that I'm
willing to scan/rip. If anyone reading this can make it happen, let me know.*
Both AOM and AOM Killer are the same type of sites. So what does AOM Killer say about itself?
As you can see below, the have almost 2,000 "torrents" (that is, copies of magic DVDs and/or books) uploaded by and available to their members:
They have their own set of rules:
And really want you to do a bit of piracy yourself. Hey, if everyone is guilty... who's really to blame? Who's going to report them without incriminating themselves?
So exactly what's on these sites?
This is something beyond a magic club library where members borrow books and DVDs. Yes, that does cost creators in lost revenue, but it is legal. Copying DVDs, whether making a direct disc-to-disc dub or doing it via a torrent is illegal.
It's something we, as magicians who love and respect our art, MUST take a stand against.
Yes, I'm sure some people will think this post is merely pointing people in the direction of "free stuff". To be honest, if you're a magician who downloads from these sites instead of purchasing what they want, please do not EVER contact me. By stealing via these sites, you're telling me that my creations (and those of my colleagues) is not worth paying for.
It is the equivalent of going to a magic shop, taking products off the shelf, and walking out without paying.
These sites exist BECAUSE WE LET THEM.
James L Clark and others are prepared to put in the work to LEGALLY close them down.
You can help too.
If you know of any of these sites report them to me, or to James or simply to the IP that is hosting the site. Any IPs caught hosting illegal torrents will be heavily fined for illegal activity so, if you report them, they will be immediately kicked off their server.
Piracy DOES NOT have to be a part of magic.
Magicians might be professional liars, but they should not be thieves!