The golden era of the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) commenced in the early 1980s with a goal to become one of the most integrated sports entertainment company, and with that dream in mind, WWF promoted some of the most successful wrestlers like Hulk Hogan, Andre The Giant, Shawn Michaels, Triple H, storylines, and featured some of the most iconic and memorable matches and moments in the history of the sport. However, the term WWF officially changed into WWE in 2002. But have you ever thought about why it happened? This confusion and uncertainty are at the root of the wrestling group changing their name from the WWF to WWE.
WWE is currently indeed one of the largest professional wrestling companies in Sports Entertainment that includes several high-profile wrestling TV shows such as Raw and SmackDown, running in more than 150 countries, hosting 12 pay-per-view events a year including WrestleMania. From the time WWE came into existence, people all over the world have been showering their love for the sport by either playing WWE trump cards, indulging in childhood wrestling with friends or consistently watching every WWE episode from the time of the Attitude Era to The New Era. If WWF has entertained us in so many ways, then it has also faced a dark time when WWF was forced to change their name from WWF to WWE.
During that time, the short form WWF belonged to two completely different leagues of organization in which one was named as World Wildlife Fund and the other being World Wrestling Federation. WWE, which was previously known as Titan Sports Inc., founded by Vince Mc Mahon, acquired Capitol Wrestling Corporation, which was then the holding company for a wrestling league called the World Wrestling Federation (WWF). In the year 1994, Titan Sports, owned by Vince Mc Mahon got into an agreement with World Wildlife Fund for using WWF concerning wrestling and was only permitted to use it as spoken word on live wrestling shows.
The World Wildlife Fund for Nature & Wildlife had been using WWF before McMahon, hence, he agreed over the agreement of using World Wrestling Federation in full form. However, the agreement had been breached in 2000. As a result, Vince Mc Mahon lost his rights to the use of WWF and on May 6, 2002, the company changed its business name to World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE). The last-ever WWF-branded pay-per-view event was the Insurrection, that took place on May 4, 2002, and the first-ever pay-per-view event under WWE was Judgment Day where Undertaker battled Hulk Hogan for WWE Undisputed Championship.
Soon after the World Wrestling Entertainment came into existence, Mc Mahon announced the formation of a new era as “Ruthless Aggression”, with the creation of WWE Championship and World Heavyweight Championship. Both Raw and SmackDown started to stage individual pay-per-view events featuring only performers from that brand – only the major four pay-per-views Royal Rumble, WrestleMania, SummerSlam and Survivor Series remained dual-branded.
During the 1000th episode of RAW, WWE Universe witnessed clean footages from the past when WWE was WWF. Reports suggested that WWE and WWF had entered into an agreement, allowing the pro wrestling company to “use older archival material and footage with the WWF letters and the scratch logo to avoid embarrassment for the WWE.
WWF changed into WWE in 2002, however, the legacy, the excitement, the hunger & the action remains the same till now. WWE has not only advertised their action wrestling business across the world but also contributing their kind support by initiating Connor’s Cure in Michalek’s memory, a non-profit charitable organization for pediatric cancer research.
In more than a decade now, WWE has become one of the most electrifying & popular wrestling programs in sports entertainment. Believe it or not, but the name change from WWF to WWE was ‘the best for the business’.