Imagine My Surprise

This is a strange one.

Last night  for no particular reason I searched for ‘dulcimer” on Ebay. Imagine my surprise when I saw a photograph of myself as an illustration for a “product” I have nothing to do with.

Imagine My Surprise

There I was, visually associated with a CD that would hypnotize you and give you subliminal suggestions to make you a dulcimer player. Really. I am not making this up!

For the record, I have NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS!

I was amused that the advertisement began with a stern warning that these folks owned the copyright on their CDs and would prosecute anyone copying their product. They did not seem to extrapolate from this concern that perhaps they should not use my photograph without my permission.

I wrote to these folks telling them that I have nothing to do with their product and that I do not want them using my photograph. I also let them know that they were in violation of my copyright on the photograph.

They did reply and I was told they were sorry for the “accident.” Accident? Did someone trip and accidentally fall on a keyboard causing a search, cut and paste of a photograph on my website? Well, stranger things have happened.

They said they would remove my photograph and indeed they have. There is now a photograph of a dulcimer and hammered dulcimer no doubt taken from someone else’s page.

In over 30 years of playing the dulcimer and hammered dulcimer I have never felt the need for using hypnosis and subliminal messages to enable me to be a player. Devotion, immersion, dedication and perhaps obsession came in handy as did a lot of study and practice.

As for subliminal messages, my general opinion is that if I can not  hear the  words being spoken, then they are probably not telling me anything.

And if it does work I would be very leery of using such a product. For all I know the messages could really be saying, “Every time someone honks their car horn you will have a sudden urge to evacuate your bowels.”

19 thoughts on “Imagine My Surprise

  1. Betsy Clinton

    So many folks just want to find the easy way to do something…listen to a CD while you sleep and learn to speak french, take this pill and lose 30 pounds, get hypnotized and learn to play dulcimer…when did working for something important to you become a bad thing? (OK, I might not mind a short cut to understanding the government bailout system, but other than that…)

  2. Bruce Knarr

    A bit late for this… but a great way to deal with “web theft” is this… most people actually just steall the link to your photograph. When this happens, you change the photo name and link on your website but keep the original link (but don’t post it) The new photograph (you just change the name to match the old link) should be something gracefully obscene… I’m sure you could use your imagination. It’s great revenge!

  3. Mary Z Cox

    Doug, a friend told me that when they were searching for a motel in Vero Beach, a Pix came up of me with my dulcimer. I have no idea why anyone would make that connection, but I could never find it to complain. I guess if you have some nice high res Pix out there, folks who like to get free Pix will take them 🙂

  4. David Collins

    I just read their product description – it sounds like they may be in copyright or patent violation of Professor Harold Hill.

  5. David Collins

    I looked at their listing, and it seems they have dropped your photo in favor of using one from the web site of a man named Stephen Baird.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/LEARN-PLAY-DULCIMER-SUBLIMINAL-HYPNOSIS-CD-/260745724340?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3cb5a801b4#ht_1329wt_1028
    http://www.stephenbaird.org/bairdinstruments.html

    Of course I’m sure these ethical folks got his approval first so as to not violate any copyright issues.

  6. Doug Berch

    Years ago someone asked a friend of mine, a phenomenal guitarist, how she got to be so good. She said she told them that while they were out learning job skills she played guitar all the time.

    Often teaching music invloves being supportive and helping people feel confortable and safe while trying somthing new but this hypnosis/subliminal CD sounds like a riediculous idea. I looked at their othger listings and they offer CDs so you can learn drafting any many other things.

    What a world!

  7. Brian Irving

    That’s certainly a lot of brainpower devoted to subliminal dulcimer learning. I wonder what else these people are up to with their proven technique?

  8. John Hayes

    At least they took the pic down, but that was an open & shut case of copyright violation. & what a truly strange concept! Tho someone once asked me if I offered a program where they could “learn the guitar in 6 lessons.” Maybe they had seen this product.

  9. Doug Berch

    Thanks, all. I actually think hypnosis can be a wonderful tool but this is ridiculous. I think the irony of these folks is how protectivce they are of their own work while not respcting the work of others. It wouldn’t give me much confidence in trying out their stuff!

  10. Deborah Robson

    Similarly strange feeling when I found myself quoted in an ad without having given permission. That was a bit defensible. This is not. I’m glad they took the picture down.

  11. Robin Thompson

    Gee, Doug, that’s wild. Never in your wildest imaginations. . .
    Although hypnosis would work for mountain dulcimer play in an old-timey jam, methinks. lol

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