Some great feedback Joe. Funny how you mention Penn and Teller, because that's exactly where I got the inspiration from.
First of all, to answer your question about paying the $100. The way I see it, with youtube and many magic sites out there, I could learn magic from absolutely anywhere, and for free. I am here for the great guys that are behind the project, the professionalism of the videos/tutorials but also for a great community.
Think of it this way:
You pay $100 or so for the latest PC game with ground breaking graphics. However, to get the most enjoyment out of the game, you decide to spend a few hundred dollars and upgrade your graphics card, so the game will play nicer.
I see this as a similar investment, hoping competitions and giveaways will build the community further, and this particular competition (that is focused around magic) will encourage sharing, discussion and working together as a community.
Having said that, this is obviously not something I wanna give away on a weekly basis, so just like the Penn and Teller show, it has to be challenging enough for both parties.
I must admit, I have not been as involved in the magic community as alot of you guys out there, so I don't know how easy/often it is to create a trick that noone can figure out? Is it mostly a case of, 'oh well done, loved your trick and spin on things and I like the way you executed this or that' rather than 'wow, how did you do that?'
Look forward to more feedback on this.