What’s NOT Bothering Me?: Foley, Vince/Austin, Your Thoughts

Nick Paglino

#2. The Internet Wins!

The SOPA and PIPA bills have been suspended indefinitely after the enormous amount of protesting by major companies, websites, and even certain artists and content providers that are part of the group the bills were intended to protect. While some of the ideas and theories behind the bills were certainly warranted, the extreme (and unfair) measures written to enforce those ideas were not.

Piracy is a major issue online and I don't blame anyone for attempting to stop it. However, it can't be done in a fashion that will harm and take away the basic fundamentals of the internet as we know it. I believe the way SOPA and PIPA were written would have ended up hurting the groups and organizations they were trying to protect more than the current problem of piracy going on in the first place.

I digress. The main thing that crossed my mind when I read the bills were suspended was just how powerful the internet truly is today. That relates to wrestling as well. While companies like WWE and TNA still discredit sites like WrestleZone and the fanbase they attract (the "Internet Wrestling Community), it's hard to argue their significance.

I have no clue the actual percentage of wrestling fans that frequent "dirt sheets", but I would guess it is still a very small number in the grand scheme of things. Yet, as Eric Bischoff has so aggressively explained in recent years, there is a cult-like group of wrestling fans included in the IWC that raise the most hell. And it's effective.

The "10 percenters" — as appropriately named by Eric Bischoff — are "the smallest group of fans with the loudest voices". They are never satisfied and probably, in fact, do more harm to the business than good. However, they are growing to the point that they can no longer be ignored by guys like Eric or Vince McMahon.

Wrong or right, they are influential. Sites like WrestleZone.com have more power than they ever have, and fans just like you directly influence said sites. This doesn't mean Vince or wrestling companies will embrace it anytime soon. I'm positive they won't. But as the major change of events that just took place with SOPA/PIPA suggests, a small group of people can make a HUGE difference with the tools provided by the World Wide Web.

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