Over the past couple of years, and especially in the last 12 months, we have seen many wrestlers join social media networks, and even wrestling organisations are getting in on the act now, but is this a good thing or a bad thing for wrestling?
Also, on a side note, if you haven't already heard, here's the latest on WWE Ending the Brand Split.
Just over 12 months ago, a new show debuted on Youtube. This show would help change the way the wrestling world viewed social media, and come to embrace it as part of modern culture. This show was Zack Ryder’s Z! The True Long Island Story.
Since then it has taken the wrestling world by storm to the point where you cannot get through a segment of Monday Night Raw without it being mentioned—specifically on Twitter. However, many wrestlers have landed themselves in trouble with management as a result of using this.
Look at Brodus Clay for example. His debut was delayed for weeks after he posted on Twitter that he was scheduled to ‘take out’ John Morrison, as a way of ending Morrison’s contract. Not only did that delay his debut, but it also meant that The Miz took the plaudits for it instead.
On the other hand, the medium has been used to further feuds already ongoing. The Bella Twins were probably the first divas to use it as a means of furthering their feud with Kelly Kelly and Eve.
The major problem with social media, and the internet in general, is that there is no such thing as kayfabe anymore, and anyone can find out what is scheduled to happen at any time. This has led organisations, specifically WWE, to change planned events simply to confuse the internet audience—and not always for the better.
Originally, Chris Jericho was supposed to win the Royal Rumble this year, however WWE realised that too many fans knew this, and changed it (for the worse) to Sheamus. This is just one example of what social media has done to wrestling.
Has social media killed wrestling? No—WWE’s response to social media might though. It does not matter if fans find out what is supposed to happen, as long as it is built the correct way. Sometimes, fans knowing what is going to happen actually increases viewership (example: WCW announcing that Mankind was going to win his first WWE).
Social media should be seen as an additional tool for companies to use, not as a hindrance.