The Sad Truth About Internet Wrestling Trolls

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Sadly, isn’t it? You know exactly what I’m talking about with the title of this article. The “fans” who are constantly downsizing a product they don’t even look at or like. Those who will find fault in every booking decision made, or criticize every match result.

Worse are those who will laugh at any perceived misfortunes of a firm. Can you imagine that? Laughing at misfortunes out of sheer frustration at not liking a product. Perhaps even worse than that are those who refuse to believe any legitimate statistics to prove a story wrong in order to maintain their own confirmatory bias.

Am I talking about AEW? We need it. I’ve seen a lot of trolls cast a shadow over both products. I’ve seen WWE fans strongly insult WWE talent (Alexa Bliss, for example), and the same goes for some AEW fans.

AEW Double or None pulled the first million-dollar gate in the company’s history, nearly sold out the T-Mobile Arena, and was the largest Double or Nothing watched in AEW’s short near 4-year history.

Although I’m sure the trolls were trying to tear that story apart. In reality, while both sets of fans post about each other – it seems as if AEW is being trolled much, much worse. Find yourself; anti-AEW trolling is much more common in this issue. I have a theory about that, but first, let’s dig into a few interesting things, including the psychology of some internet wrestling trolls.


Hana Kimura RIP


I have an honest question for the cellarers who find nothing better to do with their time than to pick out the mythical shortcomings of others.

Why watch, comment, insult, or tweet about a product you don’t like?

For example, I see a guy hiding behind a profile picture of Jim Cornette hanging around all the AEW related posts on social media. He comments a lot, and never says anything good about the company.

What is the purpose of this?

On a much larger level, we have legitimate candid trolls who have started insulting and despising wrestling talent who only do their job there. Nothing is ever satisfying, and any chance at internet abuse is taken quickly.

This brings me to Hana Kimura.

A star in creation, Kimura has appeared in Stardom, Ring of Honor, and many others. In 2020, she was part of the Japanese reality show Terrace House. After a series of insulting tweets aimed at Kimura for no good reason at all, others joined in and faned the flames of hatred. Probably unknown to these trolls, Kimura was a victim of bullying in her childhood. On May 23, 2020, Kimura sadly took her own life.

Wrestlers are people. Did you forget?

When a person actively trolls, downplays, or criticizes every unnecessary detail to fit his or her own product story, to me, it all falls into the same category.

Bullying.

@WWEGareth, @VVWrestleCringe, @AllEliteCringe, @wwe_wwf_Junkie, @HecBitw, and probably a bunch of others I’m missing, are active bullies within the internet wrestling community. Their actions are no better than the actions that led to Hana Kimura’s suicide.

And before you turn it down, there’s just not much to offer on the other hand. All larger troll accounts belong to strictly anti-AEW posts. It’s just sad, it’s useless, and it doesn’t help anyone.


The Psychology of Trolling


“Trolls aspire to violence, to the level of a problem they can cause in an environment. They want it to work. They want to promote unsympathetic emotions of disgust and indignation that morbidly give them a sense of pleasure.” – Tom Postmes, Professor of Social and Organizational Psychology at the Universities of Exeter and Gronigen

According to Postmes, the key factors that play into internet flare-up are summed up in the level of risk-free de-individuation. Simply put, indivisibility is when others engage in cunning acts in which they cannot be identified.

Notice how the main contributors of troll fighting come into the hands of those who maintain anonymity. So why hide behind a veil to insult and troll others?

Some reasons.

According to Dr. Jennifer Golbeck of the University of Maryland, often the dark triad of behaviors tend to become visible in internet trolling. These three traits are narcissism, Machiavellianism, and psychopathy. Although these traits are not always present, they tend to be repeated in cases of minimal to extreme trolling.

Studies have also linked such behavior to low self-esteem, and potential for ongoing inconsistent personal life. In many ways, we should feel sad about these individuals who have nothing else to contribute to social media other than negativity and contempt.

But their toxic behavior is really damaging, not only to professional wrestlers themselves, but to the whole fan and sport as a whole.


Hard Truth


Be honest when was the last time a buzz was created in WWE? Did you count the arrival of former AEW wrestler Cody Rhodes? Sounds weird, doesn’t it? It could not have been Lesnar against Reigns for the third time. When was the last time WWE TV was “can’t miss” due to hot internet buzzing?

I guess, but I guess the hidden truth in many anti-AEW trolls comes with a level of jealousy. In less than four short years, Tony Khan has cemented No. 2 advertising, a cable TV deal, high-level to God-level wrestling talent, and a working relationship with the largest commercial in Japan.

Buzzworthy WWE news tends to come in the form of new talent releases, members of the McMahon family retiring, or trick / name changes. AEW’s buzz comes in the form of new additions to the roster, record ticket sales and unfortunate contract disputes that may or may not be a work in progress.

Like it or not, AEW is still the hot product right now.

Hell, Punk’s recent world championship victory is over on ESPN. AEW talent appears on multiple reality shows, including Bar Rescue and Carpool Karaoke; and in this current television climate, keeping about a million loyal viewers a week is worth a lot of money.

WWE loyalists don’t have to like the product, but they certainly don’t have to insult it either.


Where Should We Go From Here?


“I think people just go to Twitter just to be heard in a negative way. They just want to say something bad and hateful and bad, so they’re going to go to Twitter for literally not [other] reason and they just say it and make sure they tag you in it too. ” – Britt Baker, DMD

There has always been a clear difference between constructive criticism and direct posting. However, even with “constructive criticism” comes a question.

Why are you watching or commenting on something you don’t like?

Need to repeat.

In many ways, yes, true fans could simply stay away from social media. The silent majority of wrestling fans will keep themselves and only enjoy their mark of wrestling without the desire to humiliate anyone else.

I hope you are the same.

There is no one “right way” to do wrestling. Everyone has their own tastes, so why do some feel the need to go out and insult, belittle and criticize others?

It’s because they’re sad people. Instead of finding self-worth through a therapist or close family and friends, they do so through destructive and toxic behavior online. The mental health of struggling trolls, however, is not our responsibility.

It drops the fan base, it drops the wrestlers, and it serves no purpose at all. This is a time when unity in our different tastes is desperately needed.

Email me for questions / feedback / insults at jdbachm@yahoo.com

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