Thanks to site contributor Steven Fernandes for sending in this interesting newsbit regarding an exchange by a TVWeek.com journalist being e-mailed by a publicist for WWE, demanding that they change a headline for an article, on their website, that was actually giving the company press because the headline featured the word “wrestling”. In fact, the company apparently doesn’t even put together wrestling events, they are called “entertainments”. The publicist was apparently so upset in a conversation with the journalist that she told him to remove the article in its entirety because he wouldn’t budge on changing the headline. Here’s the full scoop from our correspondent:
Apparently, World WRESTLING Entertainment are offended that they are perceived as a WRESTLING company.
TVWeek.com put out a headline mentioning ‘Drew Carey inducted into pro wrestling Hall of Fame’. Later, they received an email from WWE publicist, Kellie Baldyga, demanding that they change the headline, mentioning that “We are no longer a wrestling company but rather a global entertainment company with a movie studio, international licensing deals, publisher of three magazines, consumer good distributor and more.”
Baldyga added “No, we don’t do wrestling events. They’re entertainments. And we don’t call them wrestlers. They’re superstars and divas.”
TVWeek refused to change the headline. They just removed it. She then followed up, writing “I know the perception is that we are a wrestling company but we are actually much more than that–we are a global media company which is how our Chairman and CEO, Vince McMahon, positions us.”
Mike’s thoughts: I may be a traditionalist, but so long as there is a wrestling ring in the arena where they travel and provide wrestling matches, I am going to call them “wrestling”. From a product standpoint, I understand that using the word “wrestling” is considered taboo because of the negative stereotypes that come along with it, and WWE trying to go a different route by attracting mainstream advertisers, but this seems a little too excesive for me. The publicist really went out of her way to try to get the journalist to edit the article, and to his credit, he decided against it and deleted it instead. Since then, he posted another article providing the original headline and news story, as well as more of an in-depth story on his exchange with the WWE employee. Click here if you’re interested in reading more.