A looming question that’s on the mind of many in the WWE Universe is if the WWE app voting is real or not and do the opinions of the fans actually matter? Former WWE Creative Team member Kevin Eck went to his blog to tell all after the Raw this past Monday Night.
“One of the questions I’ve been asked several times over the years is if the WWE app voting is legitimate or if the outcomes of the voting are as predetermined as the matches.
For example, did the WWE Universe really get to pick the Payback main event on Raw this past Monday? Of the three options — Seth Rollins vs. Randy Orton, Seth Rollins vs. Roman Reigns and a Triple Threat — it was obvious that WWE wanted the Triple Threat to win the voting, as evidenced by the promotional video that had leaked days earlier that strongly suggested the main event would be a Triple Threat.
So what would have happened if one of the singles matches had won the voting? Would WWE have lied about the voting results and gone with the Triple Threat or would they have changed the planned main event for Payback?
I don’t work for WWE anymore, so I can’t answer that with absolute certainty. All I can comment on is what I witnessed during my three years on the WWE creative team from 2011 to 2014.
In this unprecedented peak behind the curtain, I will now reveal the shocking truth about the fan voting.
It was all completely legitimate.
I know many will be skeptical, but it’s the truth. I can tell you that there were times when I and other members of the creative team suggested to Vince McMahon that we work the results to get the desired outcome, but he always refused to “compromise the integrity of the voting.”
I felt like we were working ourselves, especially since the majority of people didn’t believe the voting was legit anyway.
On certain occasions when fans were asked to choose the stipulation for a match that was taking place on that night’s show, we’d select options that would make it easier for the talent and producers to put the match together. For example, we’d ask fans to pick between a Street Fight, a No Holds Barred Match and a No Disqualification Match. What’s the difference between the three, you ask? Exactly.
The “shoot” voting definitely made our jobs as writers harder at times. In particular, the Slammy Awards, which were determined by voting that closed just moments before the winner was announced, were a nightmare.
We had to gather all of the candidates for a specific award into Gorilla (the position backstage where the talent stands just before they make their entrance) so that they could be ready to go out and accept the award if they won. It made for some nerve-wracking moments when you were running around backstage trying to locate talent and had just a few minutes to find them and get them to Gorilla.
One of my worst experiences in WWE involved a fan voting segment that I was assigned to write. It occurred during the August 2012 episode of Raw, when viewers were asked to choose the guest of that night’s Piper’s Pit, with the choices being Chris Jericho, Dolph Ziggler and The Miz.
The funny thing is that no matter who won the vote, all three candidates were going to be in the segment with Roddy Piper. However, I still had to write three separate segments because the winner was going to come out first and interact with Piper and then be interrupted by the one of the guys and then the other.
When I approached Piper that afternoon to discuss the segment, he said, “OK, so who’s going to win the vote?” I said that it would probably be Jericho, but I couldn’t say for sure because the voting was a shoot.
Piper smiled, looked me directly in the eye and said, “Right. So just tell me who’s winning the vote.” I don’t think I ever really convinced him that I wasn’t ribbing him.
When the five of us sat down and went over the three versions of the segment, each guy wanted to make changes to the dialogue, especially Piper and Jericho. Miz felt like he didn’t have enough to say and wanted to add a bunch of lines, which would have made the segment way too long.
To make things worse, as Piper was backstage trying to get his lines straight just a minute or two before he was to go to the ring (he wouldn’t know who won the voting until he got out there), Vince made a change in the dialogue and had me deliver the change to Piper, who acknowledged me but I’m not sure he was actually listening.
Jericho ended up winning the vote, but Piper got lost pretty quickly out there and started improvising. Jericho did his best to save it, but the segment was a train wreck.
The announce team dumped all over it (which they were instructed to do by Vince as the segment was deteriorating), and so did fans on social media. Piper later responded to the criticism by tweeting:” I read that Vince was angry at the last Piper’s Pit. Not a word was said to me. For the record, I DIDN’T WRITE THAT CRAP! #bemadatwriters.”
To be fair, I thought we inadvertently set Piper up for failure. Asking him to memorize three separate segments and not know which version he’d actually be performing until the voting results were revealed while he was in the ring was a bit much.
Oh well, at least we didn’t compromise the integrity of the voting.”