WWE is moving forward with having its wrestlers eliminate relationships with third parties. According to Wrestling Inc., WWE chairman Vince McMahon sent an email out to talent this week reminded then they have until Friday to sever any unauthorized business relationships with third parties such as Cameo or Twitch. However, Wrestling Inc. has learned that wrestlers were told this week that the company will be taking over their Twitch accounts in four weeks. This means WWE will own those accounts but talent will receive a percentage of revenue, which counts against their downside guarantees.
In September, McMahon made the announcement that talent can no longer engage with third parties. It was then clarified that talent can keep their Twitch and YouTube accounts under their real names, however, WWE would have to know about the accounts. The move reportedly hasn't sat well with WWE talent. According to Tom Colohue of Sportskeeda, the Superstars have reacted negatively to the news. Colohue used the word "hostile" to describe the situation and some talent would rather just refuse to comply.
This also didn't sit well with former Democratic Presidential Candidate Andrew Yang who openly criticized the move when it was announced last month. "A lot of it is that wrestlers are afraid to speak out, and I've had wrestlers past and present reach out to me and say that Vince has been getting away with exploitation of wrestlers calling them independent contractors while controlling their activities for years and years," Yang said. "A lot of it is just that they are a quasi-monopoly, and wrestlers fear that if they do try and unionize or organize in any way that Vince doesn't like, that it will never work again."
Former WWE Superstar Paige still works for the company and has a big Twitch following. As soon as McMahon informed its talent of the move, Paige made a change to her Twitch account as she's going by "SarayaOfficial" as her real name is Sarya-Jade Bevis. Last month, McMahon explained why talent can no longer be associated with third parties.
"Some of you are engaged with outside third parties using your name and likeness in ways that are detrimental to our company," McMahon wrote last month. "It is imperative that these activities be terminated within the next 30 days (by Friday, October 2). Continued violations will result in fines, suspension, or termination at WWE's discretion."