How does one begin a thread like this? I am not sure at all. In fact, I've been putting this off for some time now because I didn't even know where to begin. So I guess I'll start with the end and go back to tell you what lead up to said decision.
I have sold WC. It's already not mine anymore. Today is my last day as admin/owner of this fine forum. I assure you this is not a April Fools joke, even though I thought "Man, we could really mess with people on this one" we felt it was best to come out with it now and just be straight about everything. I'm sure you will have some questions, namely "Well who the heck owns the forum now??" I'll just go ahead address that right now............
You'll find out tomorrow April 1st who the new owner is. You will see a new black name on the board. This person will be getting a crash course in WC backstage dynamics and how things are run here. Jim and Ed will ease this person into their new role as owner. The new owner has very little experience as far as actually running a site. I have agreed to be available via here, Facebook messenger and text for this guy for a while. Plus I still plan on being an active member of the community and probably more so in the entertainment sections and such. There will be no need to worry about who it is, or what will be changing. That's honestly up to him, but i was assured there will not be drastic changes. At first I was accepting any and all offers. I told prospective owners that I didn't care if they turned it into a Barbie or Satan worshiping forum. But then like always, my stupid heart got in the way of my wallet. I just felt like it would be such a betrayal to all of you guy to just make as much money as I could and just bail. I had to make sure my baby would survive as WC for a long time to come. In fact, I turned down much more lucrative offers but of the two highest bidders....one was a guy from Australia that wanted to make it a MMA forum. The name would have been ditched and ALL wrestling would have been merged into one forum. Basically it would have been a shitshow for long time members here, especially if they aren't into MMA. (I don't care for MMA...Nothing against it, just doesn't do it for me). The other was a guy who lived in the US who wanted to merge WC with his current sports forum which heavily features the four main US sports. Boring and not a ton of members there. I fielded many questions for prospective buyers. It seemed as if there was something wrong with all the potential buyers. My problem was I wasn't looking at it completely from a business perspective. It was often a criticism of maybe people like my wife, or Felix who was trying to help me for years turn a profit. I was just too invested in trying to be the top dog.
So now that I've sold WC. Let's take a step back in time and break that fourth wall. What happened to make this place? How did we get to WC in 2015 as it is today......While I'm not going to go through every painstaking detail, here's what my old stoner brain can remember. I do apologize in advance for any holes, missing parts to this 10 year adventure. I'm sure I will leave some important people or angles out of it, but it is what it is. I have severe CRS.
So around late 2004 I was a member of a forum at jimmyvan.com. Yes it was the stupidest name for wrestling site in the world, but I somehow found it way back in the day before google and keywords etc. I was absolutely obsessed with wrestling. I thought of pursuing a career as a pro wrestler. Yadda Yadda Yadda. That didn't happen, but I was fully entrenced in the wrestling scene with 0.0% of my friends at home being wrestling fans. I then had a falling out with the admin there at the time. I think it was even Inogenius. I was banned for a short time and my short fuse caused me to say "I can do this better than they can" and I created my own forum. I had absolutely zero experience. I then read and read and read everything I could find on vbulletin. With my came Joe Cool, Crocker, Tyler Durden and Blitz from Jimmyvan.com We were the core that would build the content up. I built all the forums up while the other 3 guys added content and helped try to recruit. That slowly and surely worked and we started having the members of jimmyvan.com wonder where all their favorite posters were. Word may have slipped out and guys started showing up. Heck, we even had our fair share of females, which back then was kind of a big deal as it was 99% male dominated, as opposed to the probably 95% it is now.
Fast forward to 2007. Things are plateauing for us really pretty bad. You have to keep in mind this is before the days of my anti anxiety meds and I was obsessed with gaining steam. It would keep me up at night if our numbers started dropping. Yes I know this sounds like something a crazy person would do, but it was really just a case of OCD. My obsession became this website. I never told many people about just how badly i wanted it to succeed without putting any money into it. But this goal was as I found it to be in 2007 fairly impossible. I became convinced of the old saying "Spend money to make money" and while I was never about making money here at WC, I wasn't even covering the server costs, so I was looking to just break even on a monthly bases that time next year. I had always lurked at other forums as one of my obsessions was checking our google rankings, therefore I visited every other wrestling forum and signed up to them all. Bookmarked them and watched them daily. I would keep track of their trends etc. That's when I noticed this small little upstart whforumsonline.com that just seemed like it was on fire. It was run by this guy Guardian Devil, he seemed very friendly and cool. So I hung around and befriended most of the people there. I ended up buying WH off GD a few months later as my first offical purchase and money spent on the forum aside from the vbulletin license etc. I then merged WH into my forum. Oh I forgot to mention WC originally started off as a Seinfeld forum called Monksdiner.com. Yup, I started a forum about a TV show that had been off the air for 7 years at the time. Smooth DD, smooth.
Things are moving along nicely for the most part. GD and Joe Cool as admins for a while. All is hunky dory. But of course I need MORE. MORE!!! I had been lurking at WrestlingSociety.net for a long ass time. PY was the owner. He seemed erratic to say the least. But I saw great potential in their wrestling posters. That's what I really wanted. I didn't give a crap about the name, PY's services or his database for that matter. I only wanted it to appease the WS members so that their posts would carry over. Guys like Jim, Carl Grimes, Tommy alone would be worth the price. I saw huge potential to take our wrestling to the next level and make it THE forum to come to for intellectual and well organized discussions about the sport I loved so much. Saying negotations with PY were annoying, frustrating and downright mindboggeling would be sugar coating it. I couldn't figure this guy out to save my life, so I stop discussions with him. Months later he said "It's yours. Just give me X" and it was about half of what we had discussed before. I bought it right then and there. I played it up to the guys in the WS staff room like I was still in discussions, but I had actually bought it days before. Whoops.
Fast forward to late 2009. Things are amazing. PS and Jim as well as myself are bringing in the best numbers WC has ever seen. We also had an amazing supermod staff in Jayman, God and Necro. It was like having an Attutude era roster at my disposal. I had all stars all around. Then the nightmare began..........because of course why should it be easy and fun.
In 2010 I was blocked at work to access WC in any form and every time I try to access its logged and reported to corporate security. Basically I was blocked because just me accessed the site too often from my office and it was a non-work related website. It wasn't a keyword but the exact URL. The only way I was getting around this was by changing the URL for everyone. That then kills all my google links etc. That was simply not happening. At first I dealt with it. I would login from home and add some stuff here and there, but what people may not know is that I did virtually 95% of my foruming while sitting at my office desk. WC was built on company time, maintaining while I was a work. Everything. Being a young father of two kids at the time I had zero time for the internet at home during the days. Plus it just wasn't part of my mindset. I just don't like being on electronics all day and night. So now I blocked.....Requests to me start slipping. They start getting delayed or I answer with "Please ask Jim" as I was often just on my phone and this is before tapatalk. Trying to forum on safari on a small screen just isn't enjoyable at all. Then I just start getting frustrated as hell. Jim had to start taking on more and more responsibilities as I just can't see them on my phone or don't have the time at home.
Fast forward two years. I'm still blocked at work (yes, its forever). At this point I've pretty much thrown my hands in the air. I am paying way too much in hosting and not making enough. I had lost my father and grandmother within a year of each other and neither was a good experience. I had a house I was building, a pregnant wife. Needless to say my real life trumped this forum tenfold. Most days I didn't even think about the forum. I would just stop by to make appearance and give the illusion I had my head in the game. I just didn't.....at all. I had at this point put every single responsibility on Jim who was buried in it. I felt really bad but it was that or just walk away. I was to the point where I was so tired that I just was thinking "If it crashes, so be it" and just going to stop paying all the bills.
So there you have it. There were a couple times between 2011-2012 that this place almost died without any warning. But as always I felt too guilty and didn't want to be selfish. I know this place has helped a few but mainly just given some a place to call "home" online. For that alone I had a hard time lighting the match that would burn the place down. I always wanted to keep WC but I felt and still feel that the right owner could really make this place go to the next level again. It just takes someone willing to put the time and effort into.
At the end of the day, this wasn't a cash grab, this was allowing me to focus on my life outside of the internet. I have 3 kids now and one will be heading to freaking college in 4 short years. I would just like to be able to come here and not have slight anxiety about if something needs to be fixed or someone is being a little whiner. It's just not something I can focus on at this point in my life.
As fun as it all has been owning this place for a decade. A DECADE! I know for a fact that you are in good hands going forward. There was more money on the table but I did what I have always done whats best for WC, not what's best for me. Go easy on the new guy, he may be new but he is hands down one of the nicests dudes I have had the pleasure to meet online. This was an absolute best case scenario for WC members as this guy wants this to stay the same. Well I guess its not best case if you can't stand Jim, Ed or the mod team. But tough shit if you do. They are awesome.
I would like to state that this place was always and I hope it stays a family and a team. Some people may come, some people may go. When they return it always with a hello. This is a great community with lots of really stand up people. There have been life long friendships made on WC, marriages from WC, affairs from WC (yup) and countlesss laughs, fights, outbursts and enjoyment for many.
This isn't goodbye this is just the next chapter in WC.
Please respect the new guy and welcome him as this deal was all done with the best interest all of you guys and gals. Not me or him.
I look and hope to see some new things on the horizon. I will not be a part of these decisions. I will have no say whatsoever in future plans. I have NO pull anymore, so don't come running to me if you don't like something. I am offically retired as soon as I hit enter on this post.
I'll be seeing you all around. I just won't have the keys to the house anymore.
I want to give special thanks to the following people as this place literally would not be here today without them. (in alphabetical order)
God (the member, not God)
and some posting gods such as KTK, Tommy, King Steve, Talent, Fuji, Shock and so so many more. I can't name them all.
but not in alphabetical order Jim......Jim was so huge in helping me keep this place going from 2009-today. I leaned on him hard when he maybe didnt even realize it at first. Jim has gone above and beyond what I would have asked of anyone ever. Homeboy should do this for a job and get paid (if only that was a thing) I love you Jim!
I met a lot of great people here over 10 years. Some have left here and some will stay. It's like life. Nothing lasts forever.