In a few weeks “Wrestling… with Demons” will close in its current form. The year contracts are set to expire and I’m not sure where thing go from there.
It will continue (I hope) on some level, but as of now, I think changes have to be made. This site was never intended to be fully about pro wrestling but it ended up being that way because of so many pro wrestling shows on any given day taking place around the world.
It’s been an interesting and very sobering year. There isn’t a day that goes by where other sites steal content from here or the “carbon copy” reports I allow PW Insider to use. Some may have noticed that the pen name/author name has changed at times the last few weeks. I do it to see who’s using reports without permission and to troll the “cut and paste” sites. To me the name isn’t nearly as important as trying to give honest and accurate results out to the public.
There is a lot of pro wrestling out there but the pro wrestling news and information website traffic isn’t good. I saw recent data, which if true, showed that even the major sites don’t get the traffic they once did now. I’m not an expert on numbers but I can only assume it’s due to so many sites drowning each other out.
I have written up rare minor blurbs on horror movies and adult entertainment the last few months that have actually out trended the pro wrestling stuff on here by several thousand hits. I will be adding more non- wrestling items in the future in an effort to “go where the clicks are” as an adult movie producer told me.
I want to thank all of you who do take the time to look at this site each day. I also want to thank Mike Johnson over at PW Insider for his continued support. Huge thanks to correspondents Tomi Yamada and David Rivera for sending results of non-televised shows in. I wouldn’t have nearly as many reports posted up without their kindness and generosity each day. Thanks to promoters in Japan, U.K., Texas, and California for working with me.
On 12/21/19, Ryan Satin of WWE Backstage got into a heated Twitter exchange with Mike Johnson of PW Insider.
The whole thing started after PW Insider’s Dave Scherer answered a fan question about Satin being part of WWE Backstage. Scherer said there really is no more journalistic integrity any place these days (I totally agree) and he personally wouldn’t have taken the job. He was merely answering a question honestly.
Satin mistakenly thought it was Johnson who responded to the fan. That ended up getting Johnson’s attention which led to a brief war of words between the two.
During the exchange, Satin apologized for wrongly accusing Johnson, but he made it clear he didn’t like that PW Insider itself questioned his journalist integrity to begin with. He claims he writes his own scripts for his “The Satin Sheet” segment on FS1’s WWE Backstage. https://twitter.com/ryansatin/status/1208455941810638848?s=21
The show airs every Tuesday at 11pm EST on FS1, but thus far Satin has not been consistently booked every week apparently due to time restraints with revolving segments and guests on the broadcast.
Fans on Twitter jumped in and asked why Satin never mentioned Corey Graves criticism of Mauro Ranallo’s commentary, which caused Ranallo to quit Twitter, or Jordan Myles (ACH) getting released by WWE NXT after making a series of hostile public demands for them to let him go.
Satin responded with what surely seemed to be a poor excuse by saying the Ranallo and Myles situations involved mental health issues. He said he didn’t want to make things worse by talking about them on TV. He then deflected the criticism by bringing up that he reported Johnny Gargano is out of action with an injury, Dio Madden is no longer on Raw, and various WWE talent has recently renewed contracts as examples of his news segment on TV.
Conveniently left off of “The Satin Sheet” segments, and WWE Backstage as a whole by the hosts, were several bad PR news items that WWE doesn’t want covered on their affiliated programming. Kairi Sane is out of action with a possible concussion after a dangerous and potentially career threatening TLC match. Bobby Roode and Primo are suspended for drug testing failures. Luke Harper, Sin Cara, and The Ascension were recently released by WWE after requesting to be.
Satin has no journalistic integrity. He is a spoiled Hollywood Trust Fund Kid stereotype that sold out long ago. (His father is Scott Satin, a reality show writer and producer.)
He started off as an “ambulance chaser” reporter on the sleazy entertainment news show TMZ thanks to his father’s connections in the entertainment industry. He gained popularity as “The Wrestling Guy” who wore wrestling T-shirts on air. Occasionally he would catch up with pro wrestlers at LAX for interviews. A lot of pro wrestlers recognized him from watching TMZ, and many were glad to be on the show knowing it was big mainstream press.
Despite his claims, he and the WWE Backstage hosts are only allowed to talk about what WWE and Fox Sports allow them to talk about on the air. It is a “fluff news” show like “Live with Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest”. You will hear more heated controversy and opinions on The View than either of these two shows.
It’s sobering to see fans on social media always defending Satin with many claiming they “prefer” him and Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp over Mike Johnson and Dave Meltzer. The fact is, 98% of PW Sheet and Fightful content is copy and pasted from PW Insider, Wrestling Observer, and WWE press releases.
Just a reminder to the pro wrestling “information pollution” sites like Wrestle Zone, Wrestling Inc., Fightful, Squared Circle Sirens, and the seemingly thousands of others out there: only PW Insider and Wrestling Observer have my permission to use this site’s content.
Stop ripping W.W.D. and other sites off with the “cut and paste” and unconvincing re-wording of content.
For the couple of you who actually do give this site credit, it still doesn’t mean that you have my permission either. ONLY the Wrestling Observer and PW Insider have my permission!
I’m going to start doing a journal in this section when I can to show the “Shell Game of Information Pollution”.
“Wrestling… with Demons” is an open journal for the most part and not a traditional website. I wanted to take this time to give some perspective and insights into the pro wrestling media landscape with my personal experiences over the last several months.
I’ve covered pro wrestling off and on since my grade school newspaper decades ago. I always knew that there are “workers and cons” in the business. Those people were usually your stereotypicalshady promoters. I remember different guys on the indie scene telling me that they were “working on getting television” or trying to get Hulk Hogan for one match before he went to WCW. Nothing ever came about and it was the usual pro wrestling lies and delusions of grandeur that everyone laughed at.
When I started this place I didn’t know that modern pro wrestling journalists are just as sleazy and unethical as some promoters. I learned quick and now see it each day.
Every pro wrestling fan should know that most of the major pro wrestling website priorities are always about WWE and AEW. Whether people like WWE or hate it, the news and results it brings in is what drives the major pro wrestling website’s traffic. AEW is the new big player on the block so there’s a mix of it being a hot product and a curiosity factor.
Unfortunately a lot of the major sites don’t have the time or desire to cover international, smaller indies, and women’s groups on their own full time because there is so much national TV pro wrestling to cover. That is one of the reasons why I started this site. (There is also another reason that involves a women’s promoter out of Illinois which I may or may not talk about at another time).
Earlier this year, a “cut and paste” site was taking my reports from PW Insider with proper credit. I had to correct them on some of the headlines and other things. They reported that I worked for PW Insider. I do not work for them or Wrestling Observer. Work means getting paid and having an official staff position. I collaborate with them in exchange for them giving my site credit on anything that they use from here on their sites.
The owner of this C&P site was nice. He told me if I ever wanted to let them directly use any of my news and results they would gladly post it too. I agreed because I felt that they were another big platform to help get the name of this site out there as free press.
Things were going good for several months. A majority of what I had to offer was used on their site. A few of my reports were even picked up on international wrestling sites from them. I was ecstatic and felt like I was beginning to make a credible name for myself and for this site fast out of the gate. I was away from pro wrestling for a few years and I needed to familiarize myself with everything again.
Months later, the C&P site owner wrote me and said he would like to have me contribute full time with a paid position. He said I would have to close down this site which was a fair request. At first I refused, but then I quickly reconsidered because it was a money offer. I would have been a fool not to take it.
The owner told me he would get back to me on payment arrangements a little later. I was cautiously optimistic because I know how life and pro wrestling can be. Obviously I didn’t shut this site down and I continued to contribute to that site for about a month and a half more as I was waiting for him to get back to me on his offer.
As time went by, one of the other staff members over there was very patronizing towards me. He disputed a few of my reports which were correct. That started to make me angry and uncomfortable. I also never heard another word from the owner about the pay job again and I never received one penny from the countless items that I contributed after he said he would get back to me on pay.
My articles for the longest time were not showing up from here on this site on Google. Other times you had to click through several pages to find them. It turned out that the C&P site had a far more powerful SEO than I did at the time. My articles would always appear on search engines but only from that C&P site. “Wrestling… with Demons” itself, the original source of the information, was getting buried in the internet searches by the C&P site.
I decided it was time to pull the plug on working with them and there was a falling out. They now no longer “copy and paste” any content from this site. They take my carbon copy reports from PW Insider and give them the credit despite my name and site credited being on PW Insider itself.
This brings me to the actual topic of “Information Pollution”.
Can anyone tell the difference between sites like Fightful, PW Sheet, and others? I sure can’t.
Anytime there’s a story such as the recent WWE broadcast team shake up, or a big news item that Observer or PW insider breaks, Fightful and PW Sheet will pick up those exact same stories along with every C&P site in the world.
This is certainly not to say that Fightful and PW Sheet don’t have sources in the industry because they obviously do. Both sites will break a big story or two per month, but overall, 99% of their content is exactly what you’ll find first on PW Insider, Wrestling Observer, and a few other sites. What’s mind boggling is how over they are with fans and people in the industry despite not being original sources of information most of the time. People either don’t know that or they just don’t care.
There is a term called “Fandom”. I don’t believe pro wrestling has a fandom in 2019. It has what I call a “Markdom”. Sean Ross Sapp and Ryan Satin speak the language of “Markdom” on Twitter, podcasts, etc. and that’s how they seem to get over. Just look at Sapp’s rehashed history of Anthem’s failed business practices on YouTube as an example. It was a rehash of what the Observer and others reported on years before.
It’s doubtful that I can prove it, but I firmly believe that the guys at Fightful steal my results and the results of others. As soon as something appears on PW Insider, Fightful will post the usual watered down/dumbed down results of it as if to avoid accusations of plagiarism. It’s usually “Wrestler A def. Wrestling B” without any details or angles noted.
There were a few times they did mention details and the exact writing and description sure looked like mine word for word. I’m not saying that they don’t have correspondents who send in results, but most of it seems lifted and edited down from other sites. Why should they sit down and watch a AAA show or EVOLVE when they can just instantly steal results from someone else and post a bunch of GIFs from people on Twitter actually watching it in seconds? That way they don’t have to do any work and they have enough readers who will hit the like and retweet button no matter how vague the results are.
Then there’s David Bixenspan who calls himself an investigative journalist and historian, but he’s nothing more than an ambulance chaser and dumpster diving troll. He’s made a career out of rehashing every WWE scandal along with any other scandal in the business that he can find.
He’s a freelancer that does most of his work at Deadspin. He has a right to an opinion just like everyone else, but to a lot of people he’s the very definition of “The Little Brother speech police and thought police” that has overtaken pro wrestling and the rest of society.
Most of Bix’s articles are topics filled with his own hostile opinions, tons of condescension, and personal bias. His main target is always WWE. It comes off like he has a personal vendetta against the company and he’d like to do whatever he can to try to take them down. The worst part is, he probably gets paid for this.
Several days ago there was apparently a Twitter argument between Bix and Ryan Satin with a few others chiming in. Satin told Bix that his “anti WWE bias was showing again”. He replied and admitted it and felt justified, basically saying that WWE is greedy and unethical for starters.
Sapp, Satin, and Bix don’t seem to watch much outside of WWE and AEW. They, along with a few others like them, seem to spend most of their time on Twitter monitoring several wrestlers, companies, and fellow reporters/sites to see what information and results they can steal. They will also jump into arguments that don’t even concern them.
Sapp, Stain, and Bix’s tone and personalities on Twitter are so similar I actually get them confused at times. Many months ago one of them said they were going to do pro wrestling’s version of Snopes in an effort to call out other reporters who are wrong but never publicly admit it. Whoever it was actually did do that type of “report card” analysis for a couple of months but it didn’t seem to last.
I rolled my eyes and laughed to myself thinking it was just more proof that these guys don’t watch much outside of WWE. They spend their days arguing on Twitter and trying to discredit others in an attempt to try to “cancel out”. There are too many “information pollution” sites like them, and if one goes down, that means more web traffic for the others.
Another thing a lot of these guys all have in common is that they try to discredit Dave Meltzer in hopes of being “the next Dave Meltzer” instead of sticking to their own lanes of the internet. They’re enabled by various high profile Twitter Trolls who surround their social media inner circle because they don’t like Meltzer either.
These people are using professional wrestling in an effort to make themselves stars instead of doing their own work with news and sources to properly inform the public. Sean Ross Sapp even charges booking fees that he claims goes to charity. This is another issue in modern pro wrestling where you have people who think they’re the “cool kids” at the table acting like celebrities and above everyone else.
Sapp was actually second or third choice to be hired in at Fightful. I was told site founder Jimmy Van wanted to bring in big names from other sites then he allegedly lied to those reporters on the pay originally agreed upon. Sapp got the job by default.
I’m not just criticizing the guys…
There are many women reporters now who share the same lockstep feminist hive mindset. There’s a difference between being a fan of the business and actually knowing the business and its history. Most of these women are clueless.
Fansided and Diva Dirt (or whatever it’s called) are a couple of the worst offenders.
Their content mainly consists of ranting and raving each week that WWE and AEW “dared” to only have one women’s match on an entire show. They’ll mixed it up with rants about alleged sexism and racism. Occasional they’ll throw in “fluff pieces” with headlines that read: “Why Dana Brook is the MVP of the Women’s Division” and “Alicia Fox deserves a title shot”. These sites are also representative of the pro wrestling “speech and thought police”.
In the end, pro wrestling fans who actually care about serious original news and results have to constantly wade through a sea of “information pollution” consisting of “cut and paste”, feminist slant, personal biases, and SJW/PC points of view. (For the record, I am sill a liberal. I’m just embarrassed to be one in 2019).
Like with the main stream media, it’s very hard to get “just the facts” news and information from credible and original outlets. Sites like mine are getting drowned out in the Internet Wasteland.
I’m sure people will laugh at this and play “the numbers game” to discredit me because of only having 100 followers on Twitter. They act as if the numbers of followers is like a commodity that represents integrity and credibility instead of the popularity contest that it is.
This post might end up being controversial and get me heat but I felt it needed to be said.
“Wisdom is sold in a desolate market where none come to buy”- William Blake
Updated at 2am on 10/22/19:
Ironically WWE Raw didn’t have any women’s matches at all this week for the entire show. It set off some of the players mentioned in this post in the usual predictable fashion.
The Burning Ground section will be opinion and commentary under the banner.
I have covered and/or been involved in pro wrestling going back to my grade school years. It all started with a monthly newspaper column.
In high school, I launched a cable access TV show and a weekly radio show simultaneously.
I have contributed to the Wrestling Observer, PW Insider, and 411 Mania. I want to thank everyone over at those sites for giving this site its acknowledgement when we officially launched. They didn’t have to do that being so well established on their own for so many decades.
I decided it was time to take a chance and launch something of my own while still sharing information to the other website. There is just too much pro wrestling content for everyone to cover at once. I feel like I spend 24/7 watching and covering wrestling, yet it’s still not nearly enough time to get to everything.
WWD’s focus is on women’s wrestling, smaller indie wrestling and a bit of men’s international coverage.
I am not anti- WWE, ROH, AEW, etc. No other sites can cover those groups better than Wrestling Observer, PW Insider, and 411 Mania. If WWD was to cover it on a daily basis we would just turn into a rehash site. It would be a waste of everyone’s time. The entire Internet already has plenty of Raw and Smackdown recaps each week.
Pro wrestling news coverage has drastically changed for those of us in Generation X. Pay streaming services and the magic of free YouTube and Twitch are a technological gift for the ages. However, it amazes that results and accuracy get lost in the media compared to a few decades ago.
In the 1980s and 1990s, pro wrestling fans would have to pay to call hotlines, know someone in the business, or wait each week for newsletters in the mail to find out results and insider information.
You had to make sure that you were picking the right hotline because several were kayfabe storylines with no value. Kids would be in trouble with their parents for running up the phone bill by a few hundred dollars per month because of these lines.
The WWF had a daily hotline for fifty cents a call that was always advertised in the magazine and on TV. It was nothing more than the roster cutting long recorded promos over the phone.
For a while people could cheat the system by using a pay phone (remember those?) for the regular quarter a call instead of paying full price from their home phones. Eventually it was too much of a headache for the pay phone companies and they ended up blocking every 976 and 900 number that there was. And there were a lot of them in those days!
Black Jack Brown out of New York had a live hotline where you could talk to him about insider news along with other wrestling fans calling in from around the U.S. It was 99 cents a minute! It was basically pro wrestling’s version of a “party line” which were popular among teenagers in the 80s.
“Coach” Kurt based out of Michigan was the best. His line was available in Detroit, Chicago, NYC, and even Windsor, Canada twice a day for fifty cents a call. I don’t know how Kurt did it, but he had correspondents from all over the world and they covered everything.
The updates were recorded and he only had two minutes of time given to speak and fit in all of his notes. If you missed some information, you had to call back and listen again. His accuracy was impeccable!
Kurt would tell you “who beat who”, how, and in what amount of time. He and his small crew of staff took things just as seriously as real news journalism. They never wanted to work people to lose any credibility and steer their paying customers wrong. They never made themselves the story, it was always about the facts and news. At times if there was a big and legit scandal, Kurt would do respectful commentaries about it.
By the early 2000s the Internet phased out pay hotlines and people were getting information for free on their computers. In 2009, everyone started getting smartphones with websites right on them and that phased out desktop computers for accessing instant news and entertainment information.
Today’s wrestling reporting, in my view, has lost a lot of the accuracy and all of the sincerity. There are too many pro wrestling websites and outlets for starters.
WWD is one of countless sites out there and we’re very late to the party. We are proof that literally anyone can have a website, podcast, YouTube, etc. to talk about pro wrestling. There are many to choose from and the few quality sites get overlooked.
It seems like most people today don’t care about sending results in unlike the old days.
My generation lived for getting results and passing them on to Coach Kurt, Dave Meltzer, and Wade Keller. We would run down all the squash matches and what move the top stars used to win over the talent enhancement.
My brain had its own calendar. Every three weeks meant WWF Superstars and Challenge TV tapings on a Tuesday and Wednesday night. NWA/WCW/WCW Saturday Night tapings were every few weeks in Atlanta. NWA/WCW would also have separate tapings for the syndicated NWA Worldwide and NWA Pro Wrestling shows.
Loyal fans and those in the business would tune into the WWF, NWA, AWA, World Class, and GWF TV shows every week still wanting to see how everything looked and sounded on TV despite already knowing the results days and weeks in advance.
Impact Wrestling and ROH TV taping in 2019 are the best examples of how things have changed in quality of information. A site like Wrestling Inc. will somehow manage to get ongoing basic results. Then all of the other sites will steal those results and pass them around the Internet. Gone are the days of multiple reports being sent in from different people to pick and choose from.
Twitter and Reddit are instant basic information with video clips. Fans seem to be more interested in being in the live event experience while trying to get themselves over for more social media followers.
When Priscilla Kelly’s tampon move went viral, that was only sight and news the wrestling world got out of that event. Nobody knew who won the match or what even happened after the incident at the show. The vivid clip had everyone talking for a few days, but nobody cared about the actual “who beat who” results of the match, much less the results of the entire card.
Our goal with this site is to try to bring back some of the old school ways of pro wrestling reporting while in this fast paced and technological society. Mistakes have indeed been made due to a lack of sleep on the Japanese schedule, but I try to correct them as soon as possible.
We hope that WWD grows enough to become a place of daily reading in addition to your other favorite pro wrestling news sites.