Why The WWE Must Maintain The TV-PG Ratings Standard We All Hate
Since 1999 the WWE is a publicly traded company, with a board of directors and shareholders. It is a worldwide conglomerate with its hand in many facets of marketing and entertainment including movies, merchandising and most recently reality TV, with its new show Total Divas on the E! Network. With that being said as much as most wrestling fans hate to admit it, the WWE has to maintain its PG Rating to ensure the overall financial success of the company. In 2008 the WWE made a major change in its programming content, by changing its television rating from the TV-14 which most wrestling fans were familiar with during the company's peak time the Attitude Era, to the more family friendly TV-PG which we are all familiar with today. That change was in part due to the Chris Benoit Suicide and murder of his wife Nancy Benoit and son Daniel, to deflate the harsh criticisms that the WWE was broadcasting overly violent programming. Also, that change was to ensure the general television viewing audience generally would not be highly offended, by the content the WWE was bringing to their homes every week. Generally speaking, when television audiences are not offended by what they see on their TV's, they continue to watch and thus ratings go up. Ratings are an important part of the WWE's success for its respective programming, such as its flagship show Monday Night RAW. If the WWE's shows receive good ratings, its advertisers will continue to do business with the company and high advertising revenue continues in part, to keep the WWE profitable. If the WWE decided to revert back to its more controversial programming seen during the Monday Night Wars with World Championship Wrestling, and adopted the TV-14 rating once again, then the WWE would lose some of its viewership, thus decreasing ratings and in turn the company would lose advertising revenue. If the WWE lost advertising revenue as a result of a major change in its programming, then the company would have to increase expenses such as, ticket prices, merchandise costs, to soften the blow of a loss in advertising revenue. Bottom line the WWE is a business, and like any business its main purpose is to turn a profit, and if the WWE can keep its general viewing audience happy by offering family friendly programming, then the TV-PG rating unfortunately is the way it has to be.