“It’s still magic even if you know how it’s done”*…
There’s a war being waged in the dark corners of the internet. On one side are kleptomaniac pirates hiding in secret communities. On the other side is the law.
For most people, piracy is a simple affair: Movie streaming sites, dubious music blogs – maybe a quick trip to The Pirate Bay if they’re feeling adventurous.
But beneath the surface lies a hidden network of “trackers”, invite-only sites with staggering libraries and stringent invite-only entry requirements. And they’re engaged in a constant game of cat-and-mouse with law enforcement…
The story of the most famously-exclusive tracker around, a site devoted to sharing the secrets of (equally-famously secretive) magicians: “Art of Misdirection is the world’s most exclusive website, and it’s dedicated to illegally sharing magic.”
* Terry Pratchett,
As we take care of that rabbit in the hat, we might spare a thought for Frank Caesar; he died on this date in 1948. The son of a Minneapolis book binder, Caesar became interested in magic after seeing Alexander Herrmann in 1889. A year later he was touring America as a magician. In 1896 he began performing a “Trunk Substitution,” a gag that Caesar created himself (though likely based on an earlier variation developed by John Nevil Maskelyne, an older stage magician who also invented the pay toilet); the routine became most famous as performed by harry Houdini and his assistant/wife Bess. Still, it was Caesar’s trademark through a vaudeville career that lasted into the 1920s– after which, he became a manufacturer of magic tricks/equipment.