Wrestling Fans Stop Being Toxic and Enjoy the Show

Cesaro with fans

Just enjoy the product. Don’t like what you are watching then why waste your time watching it in the first place? Catch highlights on YouTube later – God knows there are plenty of YouTube channels dedicated to wrestling. About every wrestling company out there and plenty of hub shows that cover it all.

If you are watching content you don’t enjoy, not just wrestling, then you are indeed the idiot here. You are wasting your life being toxic to others.

Fans cannot be fans anymore.

Take Twitter for example. Fans literally have DIRECT access to people making the content they enjoy. How do fans use it? Mostly to start shit with the talent. Some have legitimate gripes and point it at the star on Twitter hoping for a direct answer, sometimes they get it and sometimes they don’t. Either way can be detrimental to how the fan feels about that star going forward.

Fans today expect full access to stars and expect companies to do what they want 100% of the time. The problem is, no two fans will agree 100% on everything presented to them by a company.

Companies are in this for money. I don’t care if it is the two or three small Arkansas based promotions or AEW or WWE or Booker T’s “Reality of Wrestling” company – they are all in it for money.

Mox versus Omega

That means figuring out what the median that will bring in the most fans which translates to money. That is why we don’t see title changes when we feel they should have happened. Maybe they are saving that for a bigger show?

If you are not getting what you want out of a wrestling show, then you are probably in the minority that is not who the company is pushing their content to. Basically, there simply are not enough fans in the same mindset – or the company doesn’t believe there are, so they focus elsewhere.

Want more of a certain wrestler? Quit being a freeloader – someone that only watches the weekly televised product. Go out and buy that star’s merch, post about them on social media when they are coming to the ring, support them on social media by liking their pages and tagging their accounts. Generally, speaking, you must speak louder than other fans if you want to be heard.

Do you think they pushed John Cena for so long because they felt he was the best in the ring? Probably not. You know why they pushed him so much? He had marketability and look at the arenas when he was there – all that merch. Hats, wrist bands, towels, shirts, etc. Dude was printing money for the company probably at a level not seen since Hogan’s peak.

Cena Thuganomics

That speaks volumes to the company and who gets the push.

For a flip of the coin, look at the trouble Harper has with the company. No shirt (outside Bludgeon Brothers, and I think Wyatt Family, but no singles shirt). What are they going to market for him? A handkerchief anyone can buy at a gas station for 3 for a buck but at the merch table it is $19.

Most fans know the story behind Stone Cold Steve Austin and his infamous transition from belt carrier for DiBiase as the Ringmaster (look it up on YouTube if you don’t know) to the star we know today.

Basically, from what I remember Austin saying about it, he put his foot down and demanded change to his character. He was given it and it took off. Harper has sat on his butt at home because he was unhappy with sitting in catering or whatever because they had nothing for his character. Why didn’t he take the initiative and do something else instead of waiting for someone to hand it to him?

I like Harper, he has potential to be more than a lackey for someone else, but it is going to take putting his foot down – something he has shown to not have an affinity for in the past.

He is just one example. Yes, I know the story of Cody attempting to put his foot down over the Stardust/Cody gimmicks being on different shows – effectively giving him twice the workload. I think WWE screwed up not at least testing it in house shows or something as it could have been interesting. I also think there are some severe similarities between how Cody wanted to use his dual personalities and how WWE are handling Bray.

Wrestling fans don’t understand the power they hold

Without fans these companies would go out of business. This is true for any entertainment-oriented product. Fans hold the most power.

If fans don’t show up for shows and buy merch or tune in on television and PPV then the shows won’t make money. Athletes pay will be affected and overall the product will scale accordingly.

Tired of seeing a certain wrestler get the push week upon week? Naturally, most fans think they will cause change by complaining about that athlete on social media.

Guess what. You just played right into their hands.

Companies want support on social media, they want that free promotion. They want that interaction with fans. You just gave it to them.

It doesn’t matter if the wrestler is a face and you are complaining, or they are a heel and you are cheering them. Interaction on social media is interaction.

This just adds value to the overall product. It is a marketing gimmick and it is used effectively today more than ever before.

What to do if you are tired of the product but want change

Most people will simply stop watching the product and then continue to use social media alerting fans that they no longer watch for X reasons. Guess what, you are continuing to support the company you claim to no longer support.

Others will waste their time by posting about X company on social media discussions for Y company. These fans think they are just so sly and awesome. You are not, you are an idiot. You are stupid. Plain and simple.

You are also wasting your time and in no way helping support the company you claim to support. Instead you are giving more weight on social media to the company you claim to be inferior. Good job.

Instead, join groups that cover more than one company, as well as company specific groups. Respect others and post support comments when you feel it is appropriate.

Basically, the same rules as posting in the open on social media. Simply support your favorite athletes and companies.

Seth Rollins Yelling

Back to being a freeloader

One last point, one I want to revisit from earlier in this article.

Freeloaders

Look, if you are a fan of wrestling and only view it on television then you are a freeloading fan. There is nothing wrong with that, it is the equivalent of being a non-voter that lives in a country that allows citizen voting. You receive the same benefits as every other fan, but you are not in any control over it.

Now, fans that not only enjoy the product on television but also support online options – most decent size wrestling companies have subscription service – then you are on your way to directly helping the company on the cheap.

Next up is the fans that buy merch (hats, wrist bands, etc.) of their favorite wrestlers.

Finally, the super fan is the one that does all that stuff and finds money and time to participate in events locally for their chosen companies.

I am in the middle of Arkansas and let me tell you, we get WWE televised events like once every couple years and a “Live tour” event once a year or so. Whenever wrestling comes within viable travel distance of me, I am there. Not just WWE.

I am a fan of wrestling in general. I like checking out young talent that has not yet built their careers to the level that someone like WWE or AEW sees them as a viable option.

This is something that comes from my early days, I guess. Some of my earliest memories are being at wrestling events in Arkansas in the early 80’s with my dad. He was an investor of sorts in a few companies back then, or was friends with the owners, and got access to areas normal fans didn’t.

I do my best to not be a freeloader fan and understand completely the difficulties of doing so financially. I am not knocking fans that are freeloaders. You are part of most of the fan base, but you are in the minority of the fans that will see their voice play out, somewhat, in the company in that ring.

How to make your voice heard

Basically, show support for the athletes you want to see more of. Whether it is sharing on social media, purchasing their merch, attending events and cheering, whatever. It all adds up.

As already mentioned, companies pay attention to money. If someone like John Cena is pushing more merch than Alberto Del Rio, then guess who is getting the bigger push? If Seth Rollins is getting a bigger fan reaction at the live events than say, Andrade, then Rollins’ athletic stock just went up a bit.

See how this works?

Then factor in social media and it becomes a little harder to calculate who is getting the push, but it is a factor.

If you are finding yourself complaining that the product you are watching is not doing what you like, then ask yourself what type of fan you are. If you are pushing support like crazy, then it maybe that you are just in the minority here as well – it sucks but it does happen.

Sometimes you back the wrong horse in the race.

The point is, no matter what type of fan you are, be a fan. Don’t be toxic to others that enjoy something different. Let them be fans too.

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