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Author: Subject: Where did you start?
SpiNNeR72
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posted on 12-30-2019 at 02:50 AM Edit Post Reply With Quote
Where did you start?

Can't find a similar topic, but as we approach a new decade it has led me to wondering how those of us here at OO began discussing Wrestling online.

For me, it started around 1985. I was 13 and for the first time got online using an analogue modem. Pure BBS to see what the British Bulldogs were doing in WWE (GCW).

Basically never stopped since then. Direct line modems followed then in 1990 usenet delivered RSPW and things livened up no end.

I still long for the pre RSPW days when things were more fun and accessible (yeah some teenyboppers will laugh but back then you had to fucking CARE to discuss wrestling online)

I am guessing most OO folks have been doing this easily as long or longer than me, so what were you using pre mid 80's?

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G. Jonah Jameson
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posted on 12-30-2019 at 07:23 PM Edit Post Reply With Quote
My family got dial-up through Prodigy, if anyone can remember Prodigy, in the early 1990s. So I started talking wrestling there shortly after I got into wrestling in 1996 -- initially on the Wrestling BB, then in the wrestling chat rooms once those stopped costing extra. I invested a lot more time into e-wrestling than into actual wrestling discussion, as the e-wrestling component remained lively after the wrestling discussion began to quiet down (an effect of Prodigy's dwindling popularity in general).

Prodigy's relationship to wrestling was interesting in that all of its wrestling components were coordinated by Bob Ryder, a day-one TNA executive who had started out in wrestling radio before going to work for WCW in the late 1990s. Ryder hated the WWF -- even more so when WCW was paying him to do so, despite the WWF's product being orders of magnitude better than WCW's around this time -- but was pretty good about not beating Wrestling BB visitors over the head with it. He also helped facilitate some at-the-time groundbreaking chat interviews with various figures in the wrestling industry, including an influential one with Eric Bischoff. At the same time, he could apparently be very petty, and tended to get into silly feuds with other regulars in the Prodigy wrestling community, though I never clashed with him personally. Wrestling promoter and manager Dave Prazak, probably best known today as co-founder of SHIMMER, was also one of the Prodigy regulars.

Prodigy shuttered its internal servers in 1999 and tried to continue on as an Internet provider, but that only lasted a year or two, thanks in part to better providers such as AOL and in part to the societal move toward broadband. A lot of the Prodigy e-wrestling faithful migrated to FWrestling.com, which still exists today as a hub for e-wrestling promotions, though I don't think anyone from the Prodigy days is still active.

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SpiNNeR72
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posted on 12-31-2019 at 02:00 AM Edit Post Reply With Quote
Aww man I was envious of Prodigy, being in the UK. It was mentioned a fair bit in wrestling circles but as someone who was still using Prestel in the early 80's, from a geeks point of view it was the ultimate!

This shit is too easy these days

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G. Jonah Jameson
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posted on 12-31-2019 at 07:09 PM Edit Post Reply With Quote
See, I never knew there was anything to envy about Prodigy, in wrestling circles or any other circles. At least at the time, I assumed the other online service providers had similar perks for wrestling fans. "Don't they all host Q&As with Eric Bischoff?" That sort of thing.

Even in terms of service quality, it never crossed my mind. At the time we got home Internet, I only knew one other person who had it, and his dad was some sort of executive at another service provider that was headquartered in my hometown (and that was bought out even before Prodigy was). So I didn't have a sense that Prodigy had a leg up on the competition; I barely had a sense that there was competition. I only started to develop that awareness as Prodigy started falling behind the other services.

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the goon
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posted on 1-1-2020 at 11:02 PM Edit Post Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by SpiNNeR72
For me, it started around 1985. I was 13 and for the first time got online using an analogue modem. Pure BBS to see what the British Bulldogs were doing in WWE (GCW).



As someone who wasn't introduced to the Internet until around circa 1993 (a friend of mine who had AOL was my first experience with anything online), it blows my mind that this was a thing back in 1985.

And my first exposure to the IWC was probably Scoops back around 1996 or so. By that time I knew wrestling was fake, but didn't know much about the inner workings of the business, so it was pretty eye-opening to read stuff like that at the time. I then joined my first message board probably around 2000, but I have zero recollection of what the name of it was...I think it was something like Wrestleline, but that's probably wrong.

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salmonjunkie
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posted on 1-2-2020 at 06:41 AM Edit Post Reply With Quote
I was on Prodigy back in the day. Read a few wrestling things on Prodigy back in the day (91-92 I think) but wasn't really focused on it. Got really into it with Scoops in 1996 and the News From Dayton the around the same time. Followed Rick from NFD to Wrestleline (I think you're right, Goon, but I think there was another one in between NFD and Wrestleline), and followed it to OO. This is the only wrestling message board I've ever been on.

Did anyone here ever subscribe to the dirt sheets? I didn't know what the dirt sheets were until after I started reading about them on Scoops and NFD.

Also, I loved the hell out of PWI Magazine. I wanna say that was around middle school and early high school.

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SpiNNeR72
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posted on 1-2-2020 at 08:47 PM Edit Post Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by salmonjunkie
(I think you're right, Goon, but I think there was another one in between NFD and Wrestleline),


Wrestlemaniacs might be what you're thinking about? Thats where I first found CRZ, who's recaps were fantastic for those of us who couldn't see all the shows at the time. Reading them really felt like you were watching the show.

Over here there weren't any dirt sheets as such that I was aware of so I pre BBS I relied on PWI.

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CamstunPWG187
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posted on 1-2-2020 at 09:21 PM Edit Post Reply With Quote
2004. Buying the Monday Night War DVD completely opened my eyes to the business. I started on IGNís boards, then GameFAQS, and started reading Rickís reviews starting with the infamous Raw is ortiN review he wrote in Nov 2004, which I attended in Baltimore.
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