Andrew Yang comments on WWE talent as independent contractors

Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/09/05/andrew-yang-comments-on-wwe-talent-as-independent-contractors/

Entrepreneur and 2020 U.S. presidential candidate Andrew Yang reacted to Friday’s story on WWE informing their talent of added restrictions regarding third parties.

It was first reported by Wrestling INC that talent was informed this week they would have to stop using third parties within 30 days or face the potential of fines, suspensions, or even termination.

POST Wrestling contacted WWE regarding what was stated to the talent, including what third parties are specifically being listed to stop using. We have yet to hear a response.

Talent is active on many platforms including YouTube, Twitch, Cameo, and TikTok, and can derive income from various outlets.

On Friday evening, 2020 U.S. presidential candidate Andrew Yang weighed in on the status of WWE talent being classified as independent contractors:

Come on Vince – you’ve already deprived the folks breaking their backs for you of healthcare, security, recovery time, retirement benefits and fair treatment re: licenses and royalties. At least let them make a living off their own names. Many of them need it.

— Andrew Yang🧢🇺🇸 (@AndrewYang) September 5, 2020

Yang has spoken in the past about the classification of mixed martial artists advocating for fighters to unionize and have MMA fall under the Muhammad Ali Boxing Reform Act.

Back in May, he told The Washington Post the following:

I’m very confident that under a Democratic administration, we can very quickly recognize the economic reality that these fighters have been operating under and can recognize the reality that they are employees and should have the ability to organize and negotiate for a higher proportion of the sport’s revenues. I don’t need to be president to make that happen. Obviously, I was running for president and would have been thrilled to do it as president, but if there’s a Democratic president, we’ll still get it done.

Like, I can frankly just call Joe And say, “Hey this is going to seem like something you don’t need to care about, but let’s do this for the fighters because it’s the right thing to do.” I’m very excited to make that call.

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Bad news for Vince and very short sighted. I read somewhere he may have been mad Lana advertised a product that wwe had no deal with on social media.

Instead of dealing with issues with specific talent he uses a blanket policy. Its using a sledgehammer instead if a hammer to hit a nail. A huge mistake on his part. Doesn’t he have advisers to stop him from making terrible decisions?

He just does not know how the outside world works in 2020. I’m pretty sure he’s pretty much out of touch with reality at this point.

BTW Paige had posted this shortly after the news leaked:

Meltzer reported that Lana was the straw that broke the camels back.

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It’s alright folks, forget the global pandemic we’re really in the middle of a “cancel culture” and that’s why WWE’s business practices are actually fine.

This is a terrible response even for a bootlicker.

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Just another meaningless buzzword to deflect and rile up a “culture war.”

Honestly, who cares.

If talent don’t want to fight this, or are even defending it, why should we as fans even care or be angry at the talent for not being mad?

If the talent collectively fought this, there would be no issue.

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What a stupid statement by Bliss, sounds completely brainwashed

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Hey, remember when back in the day promoters were firing wrestlers because they were losing a fight in the bar because this was making them look weak in the eyes of the fans? Well, if those pussies here don’t have the urge to fight for their rights, why should I care for them? It’s not like I’ve already stopped watching the weekly product, but this is not helping me change my mind. Quite the opposite.

If Bliss doesn’t want to rock the boat, that’s her business, but dismissing centuries old questions and histories of labour rights and struggles with a social media buzzword is flat-out ignorant. I really wish the average person in North America had a clearer understanding of just how recent (and how tenuous) the labour rights which even non-union workers enjoy are.

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You’re not wrong, and I can’t dispute anything you are saying. However, It’s hard to feel too bad for performers making over 6 figures a year (some close/over 7) who refuse to speak up when they easily could collectively come together and stop this instantly.

On another radio show Meltzer spoke about this and flat out said that WWE will push these types of polices because they know there will be no push back.

I’m not defending WWE, and I’m not on “their side”. But, performers need to speak up. We are not talking minimum wage workers here being exploited where the people (or fans) need to speak up, we are talking about people making hundreds of thousands of dollars if not millions per year who are not doing anything about it.

Why should we the fans stress ourselves out when the performers don’t do anything. (not suggesting you are are saying we should). This is on them to take a stand.

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@kliq and this is why I say Fck Ben Carter. It’s the newer talent signing that piss me off more because it is one thing for a comfortable 6/7 figure employee to say nothing. It’s another thing for new talent to sign as it basically enforces WWE policy as perfectly fine because well, they get new talent signing new terms. Not just old talent stuck in bad terms.

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See I can’t place any blame on someone like Ben Carter. If a perspective employer came to you and said, I’m going to pay you a ridiculously high salary but make you a contractor, if you dont care about being a contractor and accept the terms, I don’t think I have a right to be mad at you. Now if Ben Carter comes out after this contact and complains about it or wants empathy, different story.

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It’s not that I blame Ben Carter personally, he’s gotta do what is best for him. I blame this idea that new talent are going to helplessly sign contracts that reinforce WWE’s notion that they can do whatever they want with regards to the terms and that they will have support in any upcoming case against them in the form of newly signed talent who accept such terms.

It is a lot harder to win the fight against this IF people keep signing the dotted line which seemingly implies it’s totally fair that WWE has done this.

And maybe that is okay. I’ve long asked out loud (I did this on the Cafe back in April) at what point do the fans stop caring about these issues because talent don’t seem to care enough themselves.

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It may seem like talent doesn’t care about the issues now, but they will in 20 years when they have to launch a GoFundMe to pay for surgery and Aurora Levesque has a car completely made out of diamonds

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Paige’s house looks like it’s made of very fine material.

Ok, I see what you are saying and I think we are pretty much on the same page.

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Like Chris Rock so eloquently said, big difference between being rich and being wealthy. Paige does ok, the McMahons are a whole different stratosphere. It shouldn’t be that big of a difference

They may not be McMahon rich and they may deserve more rights but to paint a picture where the wrestlers are supposedly living paycheck to paycheck is disingenuous. They are being paid well and they’re being taken advantage of. It can, and is, both.

According to google (so take with a grain of salt) Paige is 28 years old and has a net worth of 3.5 million. She’s doing ok for herself lol.