#FollowTheTweeter: Introducing Tout, WWE's Latest Forary Into Dominating Social Media
By Mike Johns Aug 8, 2012 - 2:00 PM
TweetWelcome back to the Insanity's on-going coverage of Wrestlers in Social Media,
#FollowTheTweeter, where we share with you just a taste of what it's like to follow all of your favorite superstars on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and yes, even this newfangled Tout thingy that WWE apparently sorta-kinda owns.
So, with no further ado, let's talk about Tout. Apparently, Tout has existed as a Social Network for a few years now, supposedly famous for being how Shaq chose to announce his retirement from the NBA last year. The service allows users to upload 15 second video updates, basically making it a Twitter for Video Phone Users. That's it. Never mind how it'd be easier just to upload your video updates to YouTube and not have to worry about a time limit. But hey, it's not like that 140 Character limit has stopped Twitter from becoming one of the dominating ways to communicate with folks online, so what's to stop Tout from becoming a big thing, right? Well, besides the fact that Shaq used it to announce his retirement, yet, a year later, virtually no one in the universe knows what the hell the service even is unless you're a WWE fan...
Now, for some reason, someone in WWE thought it was good idea to invest heavily into Tout, to the tune of nearly half the company's stock. Obviously, now that WWE virtually owns half of the company, Tout has quickly become a rather controversial, and in many cases, wholly unwelcome addition to the Monday Night RAW broadcast, as WWE encourages the 12 fans who even use the Tout service to send in video clips of themselves talking about, you guessed it, WWE.
Various WWE Superstars are even in on the Touting, including Chris Jericho, Santino Marella, Lalya, Antonio Cesaro, Brodus Clay, William Regal, Zack Ryder (obviously), friggin' Hornswoggle, and, yes, even the Cartoon Superman himself, John Cena. You may be wondering why I'm only posting links to these videos, and not embedding them on this page like I normally would other videos. Unfortunately, after several failed attempts, it's become clear that, despite access to embedding codes that, in theory, would allow me to embed Touts to this website, the embedding codes outright refuse to work. Every single time I've tried to embed a Tout here, the player that comes up claims that the Tout has been removed, even though the Tout in question is still live on their site. This is yet another reason why Tout is, in my personal opinion, a complete waste of a social media service, to which YouTube is, once again, clearly superior.
Of course, WWE, either oblivious to this glaring flaw, or, given my luck, purposely making it so their Superstars' Touts can't be embedded on to other websites, still continues to push this service. Virtually everyone on the WWE Roster has a Tout Account set up for them, including Hall of Famers such as Shawn Michaels and Steve Austin, as well as folks who haven't even debuted on TV, yet, like Dean Ambrose. One would imagine that Touting is encouraged by the higher-ups, but also subject to that infamous Social Media Oversight that generally means that the only truly interesting posts anyone in WWE will make are likely the ones that end up getting people in trouble, such as one from Lord Tensai, where he allegedly makes a racist joke about his manager, Sakamoto, while driving. I'd post the video here, and let you judge for yourself, but WWE has apparently made Tensai remove the video, and there isn't a mirror available on YouTube.
Ultimately, it looks like WWE Superstar Touts are going to be pretty much the same as WWE Superstar Tweets, more often than not done for the purpose of pushing current storylines and upcoming appearances via Social Media. Fortunately, as seen in some of the examples, above, the potential for strange, wacky, and outright insane WWE Touts does appear to exist. Unfortunately, as it seems impossible for me to post those Touts here, there's a very good chance that, unless the masses suddenly adopt Tout as the heir-apparent to Twitter, this may be the last time this service, or WWE's investment into it, will be brought up here.
Speaking of WWE Superstars using Social Media to further their own storylines, here's an exchange between AJ Lee and CM Punk, going into this past Monday's RAW -
Don't worry, folks. TNA is just as guilty of using Social Media to advance storylines as anyone, provided that this is, in fact, all one big angle between TNA and Joey Ryan... which it probably is. Here's Joey Ryan going at it with Al Snow, via Twitter, still upset about how he wasn't hired as part of TNA's Gut Check -
For those of you who choose to live under rocks (likely to maintain your own sanity) and avoid all things even remotely political, you may be shocked to hear that fast-food chain Chik-Fil-A has recently come under fire due to the political and religious beliefs of its executives, namely their stance against Same-Sex Marriage. As a result, Chik-Fil-A set up an Appreciation Day, rewarding loyal customers who came out in droves to support the Clik-Fil-A executives' opposition to Same-Sex Marriage. Now, here's CHIKARA official Derk Sabato with his thoughts on the issue -
Our Fearless Leader, James Guttman, weighs in on the recent controversy involving Kamala and Dawn Marie's Wrestler Rescue organization -
Here, we see Colt Cabana apparently taking a Dolph Ziggler tweet personally...
Wrestling Legend Bruno Sammartino was recently interviewed, talking about a variety of subjects, including what he thought of "Stone Cold" Steve Austin -
In response, Steve Austin posted this on Twitter -
TNA Star Kenny King took time out of his schedule to discuss the Matrix Trilogy, recently...
Meanwhile, DGUSA Champ Johnny Gargano continues his prision feud with former Tough Enough contestant, "M-Dogg 20" Matt Cross -
Ring of Honor Champion Kevin Steen, in the meantime, has called out DGUSA star Rich Swann over International Flights -
Then, there's Steve Corinio...
TNA Knockouts Champion, Miss Tessmacher, took to her Facebook recently to clarify some statements she made about the WWE Divas in a recent interview -
That is, of course, when she isn't posting videos of fellow Knockout, Tara, ripping her pants while dropping it like it's hot...
And finally, a few weeks ago, Channel 4 in the UK broadcast an excellent documentary on the Knight Dynasty, featuring NXT Star Paige, UK wrestler Zak Zodiak, and current SHIMMER champ, Saraya Knight. If you haven't had a chance to see it, yet, here it is in its entirety -
Shortly after the documentary aired, Saraya hit her Facebook to announce that Zak Zodiak was going to be a father -
Check Out What the Insanity Staff Has Been Saying on Twitter...