As many know by now, the UK launch of the WWE Network was halted. Many were angered by this for good reason; they delayed the launch around 20 minutes before it was set to go live. However, it seems that WWE made matters worse on their European Tour. While the original plans had WWE launching the network right before the tour, giving them perfect timing, the delayed launch angered fans. WWE then tried to apologize to UK fans while in tour, but they were not thrilled.
Perhaps the worst case was in Ireland. Vince McMahon came on the Titantron to apologize to UK fans, which led to boos. The second time the UK was mentioned, the video stopped and was not used again in the area.
For those who do not know, Ireland does not consider themselves part of the United Kingdom. In 1922, five-sixths of Ireland succeeded into what became known as the Irish Free State. The Republic of Ireland is its own place, and has its own government outside the British monarchy. However, Ireland and the UK often work politically together.
Technically, the UK claims part of Ireland with that sixth part, which is why it is tough to know the difference.
Knowing the history, however, the Irish people weren’t happy about WWE looping them into the UK video package. Sadly, you can’t expect WWE to look up historical stuff. Although, they do have a few guys from the area, so….
The most hilarious part of the entire tour was WWE trying to hide the network’s existence.
WWE covered up the WWE Network logo on the ring apron with a black sheet and duct tape. Yes, duct tape has multiple uses, regardless of what business you’re in and where you find yourself in this world.
It is uncertain when all of Europe will get the WWE Network. Many felt that WWE delayed the network launch enough for European fans, so the delayed launch in the United Kingdom only made people more upset. It is said that the WWE Network will be available around early 2015, with Sky Sports as part of their network package. However, that is uncertain and only a rumor as of now. It does have merit, however.
While many feel that WWE can profit a lot more when they are able to get more International buys for the network, for now the WWE Network is considered a failure. This is why WWE has been massively promoting it and adding a ton of new content. WWE could add several shows every day that would allow them to have new content up daily. The ADHD fan in us all would probably like this.
WWE obviously wants to make sure that the network becomes a success at the end of the day.
WWE has to answer to stockholders and various partners, of course. The network being available everywhere in the world is a must for them. The UK is WWE’s second biggest audience outside of America. Clearly they are not satisfied right now, so WWE must do something to get the WWE Network to them soon or the appeal for it might not be as high when it finally does come. Whether they end up as an internet streaming service or an on-demand network with Sky Sports, something has to happen.
[IMG Credits: What Culture, thepalaceofwisdom.co.uk]