A few hours after TPMDC detailed Connecticut Democrats using racy World Wrestling Entertainment scenes against GOP candidate Linda McMahon, WWE had YouTube remove the videos.
Connecticut political blog My Left Nutmeg caught their removal, but the Democrats mashed up the most eye-popping (and not-safe-for-work-or-children) scenes with voiceover of McMahon talking about how “PG” and “fun” WWE is. She’s the former CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment and wife of WWE principal Vince McMahon.
It’s worth noting that WWE only removed a handful of videos, not the more than 500,000 that exist on YouTube. I’ve asked folks in their corporate headquarters for more information, and will update when they respond.
Also, a source points out that Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT), who McMahon hopes to defeat in 2010, has taken more than $922,000 from the TV and movie industry, according to OpenSecrets. The source wonders if Dodd condones violence and sex depicted on film.
Late update: WWE’s VP of PR and corporate communications got back to me just now, saying accusations the removal had anything to do with politics are false.
“It’s an ongoing battle with online piracy,” Robert Zimmerman told TPMDC. “It’s copyrighted material, it’s our intellectual property.”
He said they “scour” the Internet for their videos and said they go after all of them, not just ones used for political purposes.
“We would love to be able to take everything down,” he said. “It’s WWE content and if we own it we are asking them to take it down.”