Dave Meltzer has rarely been in the profession of making friends.
Though much of his business has changed over the years, some things remain constant. The man once heavily regarded in the wrestling industry as the second most hated man in the business still has his share of detractors who think he is lying, rumor-mongering scum.
This week, leading the charge against Meltzer is top TNA wrestling fan community TNAMecca, which has instituted a ban on Meltzer’s reports.
According to a post and public announcement made by community moderator Chris Regal, all news, information, rumors or reports written by, or attributed to, Dave Meltzer are outlawed.
“Effective immediately, any and all reports by Dave Meltzer or anyone from his site are officially banned on TNAMecca. What does this mean? It means that the posting of any and all reports or rumors by Meltzer are no longer permitted in our comments section. Included are those reports by third party sites that report his nonsense.
If it’s a Meltzer report, it is not permitted here. If you feel you want to continue reading his nonsense, you can do so elsewhere. But we need to take a stand and make it known that we do not in any way endorse what he reports or believe it.”
This latest kerfuffle comes hot on the heels of a report made in Dave Meltzer’s weekly newsletter, the Wrestling Observer, where the writer and frequent TNA critic reported that the relationship between TNA and their new cable parter Destination America, is somewhat strained, and that the bloom is off the rose for the fledgling digital network.
According to Meltzer,
“To say the honeymoon between regarding Destination America and TNA is over is an understatement. It’s is not a secret within the Destination America company that they are regretting making the deal, which is why all the shoulder programs that were supposed to be part of the deal are now gone. I’m not sure the reasons, as the ratings are way above the network average, but when you watch the show, the ads don’t look impressive and it was a multi-million dollar commitment.”
TNAMecca are not the only ones who took umbrage to Meltzer’s report this week. Wednesday evening, Bob Ryder, head of Talent Relations & Booking for TNA tweeted the following:
“Never understood why people who make their living writing about wrestling would be so consistently negative. 13 years and still here. #TNA”
But while it’s easy to dismiss Meltzer’s Observer report as negative toward TNA, intrinsic in understanding the context of how he framed it is in the comment made at the end of the piece—about the ads.
While Meltzer concedes that ratings are higher than the channel’s average, the quality of the ads on the show is subpar.
This suggests that, perhaps, executives at Destination America are unhappy with the ad revenues TNA is able to bring home. The channel could be thrilled with the ratings, but still unhappy overall with TNA’s performance if they are unable to attract high enough ad dollars through willing sponsorships that appeal to their target demographics.
The responses from both Ryder and TNAMecca would, in some way, seem like a knee-jerk reaction to Meltzer’s trademark coy reporting of topics such as this, and readily ignore the context in which they are meant.
Indeed, Meltzer in recent weeks has been complimentary of TNA’s on-screen product, while remaining dismissive about what it actually means for long term prognosis of the company.
Most weeks, while he enjoys the show, he is quick to point out that even with quality programming, in the greater scheme of things, TNA still means little to nothing to the wrestling industry as a whole, and isn’t exactly an impact player on the major league mat scene.
It is likely this stance that makes it tiresome for rabid TNA fans, and employees of the company, to exhibit much in the way of patience and understanding when it comes to vague notions of Destination America being unhappy with TNA without context around what that means longterm, or whether it comes directly from the channel, or is conjecture based unnamed sources for which Meltzer is famous.