In its more than 40-year-old existence, WWE has seen a lot of changes. But by far the biggest change they saw was in 2002 when they changed their name from WWF (World Wrestling Federation) to WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment). It all started in 1980 when Vince McMahon Jr. founded the major US wrestling company Titan Sports and assigned it the acronym "WWF".
In the beginning, everything was going fine, but soon a company which was using the same initials took them to court. World Wide Fund for Nature was founded in 1961 and they trademarked the initials ‘WWF’ the same year. Titan Sports started their legal battle with the World Wide Fund (WWFN) in 1989. The charity claimed that Vince McMahon used the acronym "WWF" without their permission.
In 1994, the World Wide Fund and Titan Sports came to an agreement that stated that the wrestling company would stop using the WWF acronym and would not use the word on their live broadcasts. This is the reason why fans used to hear beep sounds when anyone on the show used to say WWF. However, not everything was bad for McMahon’s company. In the 1994 agreement, the company was allowed to use the words "World Wrestling Federation" on their logo. Which meant that they could keep on selling the merchandise with ‘World Wrestling Federation’ logo.
For six years, everything ran smoothly as WWF was providing fans with some great content. But in 2000, WWFN claimed that the company has violated their agreement by using the word ‘WWF’ in their live shows. World Wide Fund which promotes non-violence against nature decided to take the wrestling company to court once again. The charity got an injunction approved which stated that the wrestling company will not use 'WWF' initials in the future. In 2001, a London Court denied WWE’s appeal to challenge the injunction.
In the same year, Vince’s wife and partner Linda McMahon said in an interview, "Our new name puts the emphasis on the 'E' for entertainment, what our company does best."
In 2003, WWE won a small battle. The court allowed them to use the already made products which included merchandise and videogames and sell them in the market. After that, the company saw some major changes. They had to change everything from stocks to in-ring products, everything which had initials ‘WWF’ was changed to ‘WWE’. Many say that the company had to start from the bottom, but they kept on doing good on television and attracted a lot of followers. Some even said that Vince McMahon and his wife used to be in the office for 24 hours to make sure that nothing wrong happens.
Proud that #WWE was honored by @sbjsbd as the “Entity Best at Producing Live Event Spectacles” for the second year in a row. If you haven’t been to an event, put it on your bucket list. pic.twitter.com/yZylQYL0AW— Vince McMahon (@VinceMcMahon) November 28, 2019