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Uncle Zeb

What would WWE have to do, for you to switch off?

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I'll try not to sound judgemental with this, because everyone has their own personal thresholds and I certainly could've reached mine long before I did.

But what would it take for you to give McMahon & co the finger in a meaningful way and turn your back on the company? I'm curious to hear what's too far in the eyes of different people.

For some it might have been covering up rape or murder. For others it might've been cosying up to bin Salman or Trump. Others still might have found their tipping point at bribary for clearance to expose performers to a roaring pandemic. But for viewers still supporting the brand it's clearly none of these.

Trump once famously said he "could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue" and his fans would still vote for him. Is it the same for you and Vince? Where is your line? Does it exist? Is there no point at which you would say, "I want nothing more to do with this organisation"?

Obviously the focus here is on ethical grounds, but I do anticipate some answers will be conditional on the quality of the product. Are you more likely to turn a blind eye to certain actions and behaviours so long as the output on screen is keeping you entertained? Is your moral stand being saved for the day you can't be bothered watching anyway?

If you're just about ready to let go, what is it that makes you hesitate? Habit/addiction? Optimism for change? A sense of futility, that your choice won't make a difference so why bother? Fear of being labelled a hypocrite for tolerating so much for so long? An aversion to woke virtue signallers and their snowflake cancel culture?

Whatever it might be that allows or compels you to keep watching - what would it take to override it? What would WWE have to do to lose you as a source of advertising, merchandising, and subscription revenue?

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Great question.

Vince is an awful person. WWE is an awful company with awful practices...

However, I only ever half switch off - I.E I keep track from afar without watching entire shows and then give it a look if something peaks my interest. At the moment I’m doing that - I don’t directly spend money on the product because I’m not interested but I could do so at any given moment.

Honestly, the only way I could see myself switching off permanently would be a kind of fizzle out of interest and to be honest I hate that because I should have taken a stand already.

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I reached my tipping point just before last year's Mania. The nonsense surrounding the Saudi arrangement, Ashley Massaro, the gutting of the UK scene and a consistently rubbish product basically became too much shit to bare. 

I basically only had network for NXT anyway, which I'd been trying to square away as 'Not Really WWE', largely on account of me liking it, but yeah I just reached a point where I didn't want to give them any money anymore. That extends to their affiliated Indies, so no Progress shows or ICW either whom I'd enjoyed seeing live.

I was fortunate that it was tournament season in Japan and AEW was just starting out, so I didn't need them for a regular wrestling fix.

I'd like to say that it was all based solely on righteous indignation, and it largely was, but having viable alternatives made it an easy decision.

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My son(16) and I have recently chalked fuck on WWE. It all just feels so over produced and every show feels the same. Barring 'Mania and the Rumble, if you turned on a show halfway though, you would be hard pushed to tell a random Raw from one of the "B" lever PPV's.

Then there is the morals. It feels like every month something questionable crops up about them. I'm not saying I'm perfect or never made questionable decisions, but I couldn't justify paying a tenner a month to them, or adding to their viewer metrics that they use to squeeze more money out of their sponsors and TV partners. So we cancelled the network and no longer watch the TV shows, even though we get BT Sports totally free.  

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18 minutes ago, BrodyGraham said:

I reached my tipping point just before last year's Mania. The nonsense surrounding the Saudi arrangement, Ashley Massaro, the gutting of the UK scene and a consistently rubbish product basically became too much shit to bear. 

That's pretty much how I gave up a year ago, except I got my live fix (PWC) and enough non-wrestling things where I know 8 hours a week of more-of-the-same isn't valuable to me. 

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To stop getting money from me: significant removal of the archive on the network. 

To stop me watching: they are pretty much there. I'm down to NXT and most PPVs which I now skip through and selectively watch the few things that might be worthwhile. Technically I make a note of anything on Raw and Smackdown people mention as worth watching and then check it out when it goes on the network, but I can barely remember the last time that happened.

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There's always something for me. Whether it's NXT or occasionally something on Raw and Smackdown, and then the documentaries etc. I don't know what exactly would cause me to switch off completely after 30 years or so. I'd be shocked if I ever stopped watching all of it.

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47 minutes ago, JNLister said:

To stop getting money from me: significant removal of the archive on the network

This, I've not watched actively in years for a few reasons but I keep the network for the back catalogue, because it's genuinely amazing and what I'd give an arm and a leg for 10 years ago. As soon as that's removed I'm done.

If they want me back as a viewer they need to sort out the camera cuts and give me someone with investing in. From a snippet of raw today that potentially have one of those in drew, but everything around him shit the bed.

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This is a hard topic, I personally do not have the network but I will still keep somewhat up to date. I think morally we all know how reprehensible WWE is as a company and therein lies the problem.

Not one of us (I assume) likes WWE the corporation, we like certain wrestlers who happen to work for WWE and that is what keeps us coming back (even just to youtube a segment.) 

If I hear Roman, Cena, Usos, Big E, Miz etc have done something of note I will seek it out as I am invested in them as people and characters. 

We are trapped in a continuous cycle of nostalgic memories and investment into current roster members who we have perhaps watched on the indies or seen them grow through the ranks. 

Look at the Taker documentary, we all agreed that his tshirts were in very bad taste and we can probably conclude that as person he is very likely a bit of a shit. But did we stop watching? No because it is the Undertaker out of character finally lifting the curtain. Some of us watched his debut and have been waiting for this for years. 

Shawn Michaels, a truly awful human returned after a career ending back injury and we all (again presumably) loved it despite us all knowing he was a druggy rapist (allegedly). 

We look past the scummy underbelly of wrestling because we hold out for those moments that make us smile, laugh, cry. We are trapped in an awful world of being wrestling fans when the very company and product that brings us such joy is reprehensible. It is a complete catch 22, we can't enjoy Bryan winning at Mania as individual people because we are fully aware of the company he works for but as a wrestling fan of Bryan we can fully celebrate his success. 

We seek out alternatives in the hopes that they will provide us a cleaner, healthier more morally acceptable product and sometimes we are lucky but rotten apples still appear. Look at AEW for example, I really enjoy AEW and will watch it whenever I get the chance. As a brand they seem decent but there are still issues. 

Jericho and Swagger have shown themselves to be quite disgusting in their views but I still watch AEW and don't skip inner circle segments or matches that they feature in. Again we have another catch 22 as the political and bigoted views of individuals should are not those of the company but should the company even hire them then? 

The Speaking Out movement will perhaps be something that makes us as fans begin to make stronger stances on our approach to what we will let slide. Many of us will have watched some of the people outed live, maybe even chatted to them at shows etc. I don't imagine any of us would do that now. It makes it more real and will hopefully allow us to begin to make those same shifts in perception to WWE. How many of us would walk past Hulk Hogan in the street and not get a photo/autograph? We know he is a racist prick but it's Hulk Hogan and for many of us it's our childhood come to life in front of us. 

WWE is shit and I long for the day when it is taken to task and made to pay for it's crimes. If the Rock was going to wrestle Austin at next years Wrestlemania would I not watch out of moral integrity? I doubt it. 

 

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Given that I did turn off I can say making us pay for PPVs in 2002 was the nail in that coffin. I have watched old stuff on the network but increasing the price even marginally would have pushed me to stop spending w Vince. I have, however, gotten the network cancelled recently to subscribe w NJPW. I only have time and money (justified) for one sub really. 

They have been precarious for years andd I dip in and out depending on how bored I get. 

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I haven't handed the WWE a penny for over a year now since I cancelled the Network (for the third time).

I'd like to think it was due to my moral high ground, but really its down to simply having no interest any more. The last time I was an avid viewer was 2010 and the build-up to Wrestlemania with Undertaker v HBK II and Bret vs Vince. (Yup, stars from an earlier era).

Since then I have watched less and less, to the extent that I genuinely wouldn't be able to recognise over half the WWE roster nor tell you what they looked like, other than names that crop up on forums like this. So its pretty easy to divorce completely from the product when the wrestlers being featured simply don't mean anything to me.

Now, to be frank, I love my nostalgia so if they had one of the proper stars from the 80s or 90's pop up or hold another old school Raw or even a Gimmick Battle Royal II I'd probably be watching in some way, shape or form. While everyone hates the Saudi shows, I made a point of watching most of the main events (albeit by less than legal means) as they included the Undertaker, DX etc.

So, in essence, its much easier for me to not support the company when its highly unlikely that anything it does will really appeal to me again. Whenever I stumble across it these days the acting seems even hammier than ever, completely devoid of any spontaneity and over-produced to death. Fuck that shit.

I'm happy enough watching Impact and AEW fills any "big time" wrestling fix I may need (a factor that may hurt the WWE more than they realise themselves at the moment.)

So yeah, the fact that WWE is a morally bankrupt company is just a part of the overall picture.

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A lot of the issues wwe have are the same as Hollywood, TV, Music and pretty much all methods of entertainment.

Not saying anyone is wrong for not watching wwe or these things anymore but if you don't watch something based on a wrestler/actors/musicians different options to yours you'll have limited things to watch or do.

Things to need to change and need cleaned up that's for sure.

 

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6 hours ago, JNLister said:

To stop getting money from me: significant removal of the archive on the network. 

To stop me watching: they are pretty much there. I'm down to NXT and most PPVs which I now skip through and selectively watch the few things that might be worthwhile. Technically I make a note of anything on Raw and Smackdown people mention as worth watching and then check it out when it goes on the network, but I can barely remember the last time that happened.

Pretty much this for me.  Since I got SKY in 2002 I watched every single show, including B and C shows, only wavering for a few months in 2007 when I started university.  I never imagined a time when I would ever stop watching.

But since about the end of April I've only watched the PPV's and NXT.  The biggest factor in me stopping watching was the lack of crowds, but also (and very much interlinked) how shit the product is right now.

WWE will always get my monthly Network sub I imagine, too much good stuff on there from the past.

Since I've stopped watching WWE weekly TV, I've watched all of 2018 NJPW and Impact Wrestling, and I've really enjoyed it.  Starting on 2019 for both companies now.

 

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I reached my tipping point a long time ago. For me it was a combination of bad booking, hating Vince McMahon and finding an alternative I really liked. I really soured on WWF after they royally fucked up the Invasion angle, failed to re-launch the WCW brand, made a mockery of ECW and then buried their respective rosters. Then the following summer NWA-TNA started and I would download and watch each of their weekly PPVs from there. I basically watched TNA only from that point on until I became a lapsed fan around 2010...only to get back into wrestling in 2018 when I stumbled upon ROH / NJPW. 

Edited by MPDTT

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