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Judah Maccabee
1/07/2005 7:03pm,
Watch as a British man gets pickpocket0wned by a master at the craft:

http://www.channel4.com/entertainment/tv/microsites/M/mindcontrol/streaming/pickpocket.ram


Diversionery tactics
This week's episode sees Derren illustrating one of the oldest psychological tricks in the book: picking pockets. 'Pickpockets are masters of psychological manipulation and control,' says Derren. 'Though they are gone in an instant, what they are doing when they steal from you is using a psychological version of visual misdirection controlling your attention. For instance, they might focus your attention by 'accidentally' touching one wrist, so you're not paying attention as they slip your watch from the other.' Crowded trains make an ideal pickpocketing opportunity. As people press up against you, you are less likely to feel alarmed if someone happens to squeeze the pocket containing your wallet or purse.

Another well-known trick thieves employ is to pretend that they have dropped something, then start scanning the ground. The chances are that you will, too, and while you're distracted, they are helping themselves to your wallet. But though some pickpockets are simply opportunists, real street thieves spend years mastering the art of distraction.

Baffling speed
The young man whom Derren continually pickpockets at the train station, for instance, doesn't notice what's happening to him even though it seems perfectly obvious to the audience. But in a similar situation, most of us would be just as easily stripped of our possessions. As the baffled commuter admits, 'I didn't really know what was going on it was so quick I didn't notice.' This is because, as anti-street crime experts will tell you, the age-old scam of picking pockets has survived simply because human beings usually focus their attention on one thing at a time. Distract them with something else, and they will soon forget about their wallets, jewellery and other valuables.

Charm offensive
However it doesn't even take someone to dip into your bag to scam you out of your hard-earned cash. Even the most vigilant traveller can find their judgement suspended by the 'psychological misdirection' techniques of a manipulative salesperson. Derren says when he first approached the commuter at the station: 'I wanted to see how boldly I could fleece someone, while being as charming as possible, so I kept him slightly bewildered with a series of instructions and questions which rendered him very suggestible.'

This is how hard-core salesmen operate, says, Derren. 'They draw your attention to another area of choice such as what colour you want, presupposing that you have already agreed to buy an object,' he says. 'By getting you to focus on the peripheral areas, they bamboozle you into thinking you are getting more value for money.'

Judah Maccabee
1/07/2005 7:13pm,
More clips here:

http://www.channel4.com/entertainment/tv/microsites/M/mindcontrol/video/

Stick
1/07/2005 7:17pm,
I love thievery and slight of hand.... I started practicing lock picking, but didn't keep up with it. I've been lax in my sleight of hand as well, palming and the like.

Argh.

Roidie McDouchebag
1/07/2005 7:29pm,
I worked as a salesman for awhile...I was no good at it, I just can't lie to people like that.

Greese
1/07/2005 8:09pm,
And you are a moron.

tkdan28
1/07/2005 8:17pm,
I love thievery and slight of hand.... I started practicing lock picking, but didn't keep up with it. I've been lax in my sleight of hand as well, palming and the like.

Argh.you lie, you steal, you beat up fat dudes for money, you **** belly dancers.... can I be you?

please

Roidie McDouchebag
1/07/2005 8:26pm,
And you are a moron.

Are you implying morons can't be salesmen, lol?

Judah Maccabee
1/08/2005 10:42am,
Morons can't be the best salesmen.

Assholes and jerkoffs can, but morons? When it comes down to it, you need to know everything about your product. Dale Carnegie wrote on how a cereal company required it salespeople to know every quality about the cereal: Which state the ingredients came from, nutritional facts, etc. Because imagine that you're talking with a store owner who's from Kansas. You could joke/claim "Hey, good things come from Kansas. We have two examples right here: You, and this cereal. The wheat here comes from a Kansas farm in Ellis County."

"Well, hell, I'm from Ellsworth county about two counties over! I probably know the sonovabitch who makes your damn cereal wheat! That's amazing!"

(information gleaned from http://www.accesskansas.org/living/cities-counties.html )