Someone Bought This: WWF rigs their voting hotline to steal fans’ money

14 Submitted by on Wed, 24 July 2013, 00:00

The Quebecers

On the November 8th, 1993 live Monday Night Raw show, the WWF announced that fans could pick Quebecer Pierre’s opponent for the main event for the November 15th by voting via a 1-900 number. I don’t know how much the call cost, but let’s say it was $2.99.

The choices fans could pick from were:

  1. The 1-2-3 Kid
  2. Marty Jannetty
  3. Doink The Clown
  4. Lex Luger

They then proceeded to spend the entire hour of that November 8th Raw shamelessly trying to get people to vote for Lex Luger.

Shockingly, Lex Luger ended up winning the poll!

Okay, so there’s nothing too unusual about that. The WWF was just trying to get people to vote for Luger because they wanted him to win, right? You’re thinking “That’s not too big of a deal”, right?

Well, the problem was that the November 15th Raw wasn’t going to be live- it was going to be taped the night of November 8th right after that night’s live Raw ended, and it was already set to have Pierre face Lex Luger.

Don’t believe me? Let’s take a look at the relevant taping results for November 8th courtesy of The History Of WWE website’s 1993 section (I’ve edited it down to just the relevant information- you can see the full live Raw/taping results on the website).

WWF @ Bushkill, PA – Fernwood Resort – November 8, 1993
Monday Night Raw:

11/8/93 – during the duration of the broadcast, a 1-800 voteline was set up to determine who would face Quebecar Pierre the following week; the options were Lex Luger, the 1-2-3 Kid, Doink the Clown, and Marty Jannetty; Luger won in a landslide:

11/15/93 
Lex Luger pinned WWF Tag Team Champion Quebecar Pierre (w/ Johnny Polo) with a forearm blow after knocking Polo off the ring apron; after the bout, Jacques came out to try to revive his partner; Pierre was eventually taken from ringside on a stretcher; as a result of the incident, Pierre was taken out of the Survivor Series

So no matter who actually won the voting, they were going to announce the night of November 8th that A). Luger had won, and B). Tape the match with Luger as the opponent later that night and air it the following week as if it were live.

The voting hotline served no actual purpose except to gyp fans out of their money, since the match was going to be taped on the same night fans were “voting” and the voting would actually not play any part in deciding who Pierre faced.

I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised that something in the world of wrestling is fixed, but this seems pretty scummy even by professional wrestling standards.

Vince Screwed Doink!

I want to credit my source for this story. I heard this story from Joe Gagne on the Joe Vs. The World podcast covering 1993. Joe gives his source as an issue of The Wrestling Observer (I assume one from late 1993 around the time this happened).

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14 Responses to "Someone Bought This: WWF rigs their voting hotline to steal fans’ money"
  1. ScMcS says:

    I guess someone learned their lesson. They did the same thing for the April 11th, 1994 Raw where the Quebecers opponents were decided by a poll. The options were Men on a Mission, the Smoking Gunns, and the Bushwhackers. Not an inspiring trio of teams if you ask me. Anyway, long story short, the polls were only open for 45-minutes, and it was a live episode, so even though they probably screwed people over (MOM “won” the vote), at least it wasn’t taped in advance so that the results meant nothing.

  2. MaturedSinner says:

    Pretty much every poll WWE does is rigged. Either by making one choice stand out compared to the others or by just ignoring the results altogether. It’s a dirty way of making people think they have any input.

    • "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

      Yeah, now they’re pretty much doing the same thing with the “vote for a stipulation/match/wrestler” thing with the App.

  3. Art0Donnell says:

    The poll closed at the end of the live Raw and they announced Luger as the winner (which they had of course been banking on).
    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lb92oXoGMm0/UHbbZBl92PI/AAAAAAAACQk/lKdNBMK78_w/s1600/Picture+34.png

    However, they still managed to screw over fans on the West Coast when the show aired on a 3-hour tape delay but still urged the fans on the West Coast to vote in a poll that had already closed. They had to apologize on the next week’s Raw and offer the West Coast fans refunds.
    http://youtu.be/uTUL8Svj9wE?t=55s

    • Dave says:

      Right – so…this article’s not particularly correct, then.

    • "The Big Cheese" Paul Kraft says:

      They were going to tape the Raw with Luger wrestling no matter what, though. That’s kind of my point.

      • Hunter says:

        So if they had the results by the end of Raw, why couldn’t they have just changed the card slightly for the taping?

      • Dave says:

        But what do you know that lets you make that claim? You might be right, but there’s no evidence of it in the article.

        They taped a match with Luger wrestling AFTER they had the poll result. We know from the taping results that Doink and Marty were in the building, and have no reason to believe that Waltman wasn’t. They could have run the match with any of the guys, couldn’t they?

        So on what basis are you saying that the fix was in?

  4. TMS says:

    Wasn’t that pretty much the same thing they did with the Taboo Tuesday PPV’s they used to have? They gave the fans the “choice” of choosing someone’s opponent, match type or stipulation by trying to make one “choice” stand out over the others. Then ignoring the results and booking what they wanted anyway, telling people that the wrestler or stipulation was the one that “won”.

  5. AdamX says:

    YOU CAN HAVE EVAN BOURNE VS SIN CARA OR A MASON RYAN SQUASH MATCH! CHOOSE NOW!

  6. ScMcS says:

    Im sure that at the first Taboo Tuesday, Shelton Benjamin won when it was meant for fans to vote Batista when it came to challenging Jericho for the IC Title. Maybe it was the next year they started rigging it a little more obviously?

  7. Joe T says:

    Maybe they could run this thing in reverse, like a reality show, I’d download the App to vote Maddox off of the show for good. I’d bet lots of fans would download the App for this one time use if they didn’t fix the voting and stuck with the results.

  8. HardcorePlugg says:

    Could we have voted on a more pressing issue? Like to see Johnny Polo naked?

  9. That Don Guy says:

    Oh, and WCW didn’t do the same thing? Remember the “red” and “blue” locker rooms, where one had five midcarders and Ric Flair, and the other had five midcarders and Sting?

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