Back in September, WWE came under fire from both its Superstars and the WWE Universe. The company announced that it would be restricting the use of third-party applications such as Twitch and Cameo.Unfortunately, despite the outrage it caused online, the company went through with it regardless. An official ban was subsequently put in place at the end of October.Vince McMahon and WWE then proved they were serious about the ban. WWE released Zelina Vega (Thea Trinidad) from her contract for her refusal to give up her Twitch account. Today it has been learned that WWE is taking things even further than before.Raj Giri of Wrestling Inc. reports that WWE is now issuing violations to talent for social media posts that naming “any third-party business, person, brand, or charity.”WWE will issue warnings, fines, and even suspensionsWrestling Inc. reports that violations of these rules will start with a warning, but could progress to a fine and even turn into a suspension. The company claims a clause in WWE talent’s contracts grants it “exclusive use of their likeness.”Sources told Giri that talent who complained about the new restrictions were informed that the current “flexibility” WWE allows its talent to have online could be retracted.It was reported last week that the talent was unhappy backstage ahead of WWE SmackDown on Friday. With this news breaking now, it’s not hard to put the pieces together to find out where some of the recent unhappiness came from.A recent study from LoveUX shined a light on how beneficial these third-party ads can be for celebrities and athletes. It points out that both RAW Superstars Lana and Mandy Rose earned roughly half a million dollars from their sponsored posts in 2020.
While that is a lot of money, it really shouldn’t be anything WWE needs to concern themselves with. The company is doing well financially without actively restricting how its independent contractors earn additional cash.What do you think about WWE’s latest third-party restriction? Do the talent have a leg to stand on, or are they contractually bound to agree to such terms? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
Published 16 Feb 2021, 05:27 IST