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Should pro wrestling such as WWE be consider a sports???

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/9/2017 Category: Sports
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,344 times Debate No: 104354
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (19)
Votes (1)




Round 1 is to accept. I will be arguing that pro wrestling such as WWE is a sports.


I accept.
Debate Round No. 1


Okay i want to thank you DawnBringerRiven for this opportunity. This should be a good debate here, so let's begin...

Of course i will be arguing on why WWE is a sport, and my opponent will be arguing why it isn't a sport. So what a is the requirement for a sport being a sport? The definition is "Physical activity that is governed by a set of rules or customs and often engaged in competitively.
A particular form of this activity.
An activity involving physical exertion and skill that is governed by a set of rules or customs and often undertaken competitively.
An active pastime; recreation"
Physical activity that is governed by a set of rules or customs and often engaged in competitively. Yes WWE is.
A particular form of this activity. Yes....
An activity involving physical exertion and skill that is governed by a set of rules or customs and often undertaken competitively. Yes.....
An active pastime; recreation. Yes...
WWE wrestler can jump, run, physical with each other, sweat, picking each other up using their strengths, using their skills, balance, using the mind, and team work. All these factor in a being a sport. WWE Wrestler get injury just like wrestler in the Olympics, and in any other sports. You can't get hurt if WWE wrestler not being physical. "Can you honestly tell me that NASCAR drivers, golfers, fishing "experts" and bowlers (all events considered sports) are better athletes then professional wrestlers?" No you can't.

"Just because there's a script involved it doesn't take away from the competitive environment of professional wrestling". It doesn't mean there no real competition between the wrestler facing each other or in the locker room. You can ask any member of the WWE, and they will tell you it is extremely competitive in the ring and out.
You going to being up WWE is just entertainment, and you will be right, it is entertaining, just like watching the SuperBowl, or watching the baseball playoffs or any other sporting events. In the later rounds i could go more in detail on other issues you may have with WWE being a sport.


I. The "WWE matches all definitions of sport" Premise

These parts of your argument are flawed.

1. An active passtime; Recreation

2. Physical activity that is governed by a set of rules

3. An activity involving... skill... and often undertaken competitively

For the first point, the source given for this statement states the difference between a game and a sport. It continues to state that the definitions of sport and games somewhat overlap. The first point is one of such definitions that overlap. The source also does not go far enough to define what kind of recreational activity can qualify as a sport. It simply states; "An active pastime; recreation." Which brings me to the next point. WWE is not governed by a set of rules or customs that are strict or well established. In WWE wrestlers have broken rules made by the referee as part of a staged act. There have been multiple instances where a wrestler 'knocked out' the referee with no consequence. This brings me back to point one. How can Pro Wrestling from WWE be a recreation/passtime if there are no clear set rules? The only way to commit to WWE as a recreation is to pretend fight with another person. You are not actually going to be able to hit another person with a "Stone Cold Stunner" or a "Tombstone Piledriver". Playing pretend, even if it is physically demanding, is not a sport as it lacks regulation. As Pro's source states, "Physical activity that is governed by a set of rules or customs." That simply does not exist in WWE. Even in the most restrictive type of match, the cage match, wrestlers are scripted to break out of the cage. WWE repeatedly breaks its own rules for shock value. On to the third point. WWE does require skill and that skill is acting. Acting is not a sport. Sports are meant to have individuals vying for victory, but in WWE the victor is predetermined. The only competitive factor in WWE is who can be the most enternaning. No one can compete for victory as the victor is already chosen from the very beginning.

II. The "Activities not requiring heavy physical involvement are not a sport" Premise
I fail to see how this is rellevant to the discussion of WWE being a sport. I presume Pro believes since WWE meets a third of a requirement for being a sport, then it is certainly a sport. This logic is obviosly flawed. To be considered a sport, an activity must meet
all requirements, not just a third of them. Requirements for a sport are competition, physical involvement, and regulations. WWE only meets one of those three requirements. The other two I have refuted in my above statements. Pro's assertion that sports need to be physically demanding is flawed. The definitions provided by Pro state sports need to only have physical involvement and skill, not for an activity to be physically demanding. Under those definitions; NASCAR drivers, golfers, fishing experts and bowlers still qualify as a sport.

WWE is not a sport the same as plays are not considered a sport. Plays can be physically demnading, have a fictional set of rules, and include dangerous stunts that can be recreated in real life as a passtime. WWE and acting are not a sport as they lack competition, a core part of sports. You can not have a sport where all winners and losers are completely predetermined and the sport requires you to break its own rules.


Debate Round No. 2


Well, thank you DawnBringerRiven, for some interesting point of views. Good arguments.

Now you said WWE isn't a real sport because it lacks competition, a core part of sports. " all winners and losers are completely predetermined" and "WWE is not governed by a set of rules or customs that are strict or well established". We'll let's break these down.

Frist, i will discuss WWE do have they own unique set of rules. Just like in every major or small sporting events they have they own set of rules. You said in wrestlers often "'knocked out' the referee with no consequence", well that isn't really true, you see because in some cases, other referee came in to replace the injury referee, or the manager of the show or the CEO come down to make the wrestlers start they match again or have another match at a later date. Plus WWE has a lot of different types of matches, which they do have they own set of rules, like the Royal Rumble match, the rule in that match is simple, you start out the match with two wrestlers, every 2 min. another wrestler comes in until all 30 wrestlers have entered the ring. The only way to get your opponent out of the match is by throwing him over the top rope. You win if you are the last man standing in the ring. ANY of the WWE matches they have they own set of rules that they do go by, just because we the fan or the audiences don't necessarily see the rules outright, like who wins, and who loses, doesn't mean they weren't any rules in the beginning of the match. Like you said it predetermined so WWE has a winner and loser before the match begins. So wrestles still have to go by their set of rules, the WWE set up, and they have to execute it in the ring. The wrestlers need to perform, in the ring and go with the plan as who won and who loses. So they is set of rules WWE follows, it just they own set of rules, just like baseball, football, basketball, and anything else in sports, they have they own set of rules set for them.

According to Wikipedia "Recreation is an activity of leisure, leisure being discretionary time.[1] The "need to do something for recreation" is an essential element of human biology and psychology.[2] Recreational activities are often done for enjoyment, amusement, or pleasure and are considered to be "fun"." So enjoyment, amusement is very important in sports wouldn't you say So? WWE fit under this as well, it fun, it entering, and you watching athletes wrestle each other, WWE entertain us just like any other sporting events.

Secondly, I will discuss why WWE wrestlers are competing in the ring and out. Sure wrestlers know who going to win and lose before the match, but they still have to have the skill set on some wrestlers moves, such as an armbar, picking they opponent up and slamming them down, high-risk moves, such as Diving pointed elbow drop, Moonsault leg drop, etc. The wrestlers are competing with each other to look good in front of the audience, and the wrestler's scouts. If a wrestles suck on performance out in front of the audiences, he or she could be out of work. If a wrestler does a good performance in the ring, then he/she would have more matches in line. That's just for the in-ring matches, what goes outside the ring is a little bit different. Like you need be at the gym and practicing your wrestler's moves, if you don't look good out of the ring then you will be watching the show from outside the ring like everyone else. It is very competitive, in the ring and out of it, you are fighting to stay on the show, just like in other sports you need to be productive, or you will be watching from the outside looking in.

You think boxing is not a rigged sport? It all about the money. It has judges that get paid to fix fights, it happens more than ones. Like Antonio Margarito Is Caught with Plaster in His Gloves, IBF President Robert Lee Takes Bribes, Sells Rankings, Jake LaMotta Takes a Dive for the Mob. Olympics figure skating can also be seen as rigged, with judges unfair results. like the 2002 Winter Olympics scandal, " The controversy led to two pairs teams receiving gold medals". "The American and Russian figure skating teams have been accused of conspiring to fix who will receive the sport's Olympic medals". in 2014. So is WWE not a sport if another professional league can't follow there own rules?

"A world-class rugby player might be able to charge through the opposition like a slightly-faster tank, but could he also drop a big elbow from the top rope? And a champion boxer can certainly take a good walloping, but could he do it five nights a week, every week? And get slammed on the mat a dozen times and whacked with a steel chair? No, he couldn't". Could you go and wrestle in front of 10 to 80,000 fans, 3 to 4 times a week 20 minutes matches, and not have some black and blues, or some fractures?

Requirements for a sport are competition, physical involvement, and regulations. WWE has all three, it is Competition, it has physical involvement, and yes it does have regulations. it's is a sport. A legit, honest-to-goodness sports and it deserves the same respect as any sporting competition in the world.


1. Rules- When I mentioned wrestlers knocking out referees with no 'consequence', I meant penalty. I see that consequence was not the right word as consequences can also be positive. The wrestlers themselves are not penalized. Having a replacement referee or rescheduling the match to a later date are not penalties as they do not negatively affect the wrestlers. I specifically stated that "WWE is not governed by a set of rules or customs that are strict or well established. Yes different matches have fictional win conditions, but they do not have rules outside of that besides their performance. A performance is not the same as a rule. A rule in WWE is to not harm or disobey the referee, though wrestlers are scripted to break those rules without penalty on multiple occasions. Again, a sport can not require its participants to break its own rules.

2. Competition- To clarify, competition in sports needs to allow each and every indicvidual or team the ability to win. In WWE, one individual or team is scheduled to win each match (if not already scheduled to be a draw). Participants are not able to compete for victory. They compete to be the most entertaining. If competing to be entertaining was a sport, movies containing stunt men would be considered a sport as well. Martial art movies would be considered sports, as each stunt man is vying to be the most entertaining. Each stunt man is required too perform dangerous and physically demanding tasks. Each stunt man has a set of precedures they have to follow. These movies also have audiences rooting for who they want to win. What are the differences between a WWE performance and a martial arts movie? WWE is performed live and is advertised as a competition. Movies are mostly performed privately and are advertised as films. Does the way an event is advertised or presented to an audience affect if the event is considered a sport or not? I would say no. There is no significant difference between WWE and movies that include stunt men. WWE is not a sport the same as dangerous/difficult to perform movies are not considered a sport.

I. Proffesional sport corruption means that activities don't need competition or rules to be considered a sport

This logic is obviously flawed. Boxing, for instance, is not universally rigged. There are only a few instances from time to time where individuals are cheating. WWE is universally rigged. It is always predetermined who will win and lose. WWE does not have corruption. It is set up by the creator of WWE themselves to be a performance. Boxing was not originally set up to have predetermined matches. Individuals who cheat in real sports, if caught, are penalized. Unlike in WWE where wrestlers can fictionally knock out the ref without penalty.

II. WWE is heavily physically demanding

I have already conceded that WWE includes physical involvement. I have stated WWE must meet all requirements to be considered a sport, not only one.

Rules in WWE are not strict or well established enough to be considered a sport. Wrestlers are not penalized for breaking the rules and are scripted to do so. WWE lacks competition for victory, a neccesity for sports. All winners and losers are predetermined, no individual or team can compete for victory. WWE is not truly a sport the same as movies involving stunt men are not considered sports. Real proffesional sports include instances of corruption from time to time where involved individuals are penalized for breaking the rules. WWE is set up to be rigged by the creator of WWE themselves; therefore, it is fundamentally different from corruption/cheating.
Debate Round No. 3


Nice come back!!!

Now before i go further, i just want to point out something in boxing. Boxing been know to have a lot more cheating or sandals, than a few. It only cheating if you get caught. So in most cases boxers, managers, agents, and judges haven't been getting caught. They is a lot of cases the loser of the fight get paid more than what he actually makes during the fight. I will also give you some examples on some boxers had no intentions on winning. For example Mayweather vs. Pacquiao. "Mayweather will have made some $180 million, while Pac-Man had to settle for $120 million". This match Pacquiao had no intentions on winning, he didn't even throw pouches, he ran, and hold, it was by far his worst match ever. Why did he do this because he just wanted the money 120 million worth. ( oh yeah, if you say he couldn't fight because of his shoulder, then you just got fooled). I have another example, Mayweather vs. McGregor. This fight was all about the money for both fighters. Mayweather take in $100 million as for Conor McGregor take in $30 million. In just one fight for McGregor take 30 million, as for his whole career in the UFC he take in only 9.5 million. He knew he wasn't going to win this fight. He had no chance, a zero possibility to win. It was a little better than the Pacquiao fight. But both was about the money never had the intent on winning. Oh yeah i have one more example, "Ronda Rousey earned $3m for being knocked out in 48 seconds but Amanda Nunes paid just $200,000 at UFC 207". Rousey never made attempt to make this a fight. Why because she made 3 million bucks. In just 48 seconds. So in some sports they Don't even have the intentions to win. They just wanted the money... So yes other sports can be fix as well not just WWE.

You said they don't compete to win, so how can they win a championship without winning? If they lose, they won't get the tilte. So they still have to win the fight to get the title. Plus if you lose all the time you won't be on the show. So yes winning and losing does count in the WWE. Sure it was already predetermined, but the wrestler still need to perform, and try not to get injury, because if they get injury it would change the out come of the match. Oh did you wonder if a wrestler doesn't win or perform well in the ring, he or she get send down to a lower league of wrestling, WWE is consider the major league of wrestling. Just like anyother major sporting league. Baseball have the minors, the NFL have college football and the European league the NBA have the d-league, and college basketball. So WWE should be considered a real sport.

Eva Marie Suspended By WWE For Wellness Violation in 2016.
WWE has suspended Paige for 60 days, her second Wellness in 2016. "Hurricane, Gregory Helms suffered a one strike on August 30, 2007 when he was suspended for a 30-day-period after consuming pharmaceuticals not in compliance with WWE"s Talent Wellness Program". Just seeing some of these suspensions, tell you WWE does have rules you need to comply with. WWE does penalized there wrestler. Knocking out the referee, in most cases is part of the match them selfs. So WWE will not penalize wrestlers for knocking them out. But in other cases WWE will suspend their own if not complying with rules.

Do you know who going to win a wrestling match? Do you know who will win this week football games or tonight baseball game?You can predict who going to win. But you don't actually know. We the fans or the audience don't know who will win the match until after the match. So it entertaining, because we just don't know the outcome, just like any other sporting events we don't know who will win or who going to lose. Yes in wrestling matches is predetermined, but only for the wrestler and the higher up knows what should happen in the match. But the wreslter still fighting for a pay check, and to win the match or for a win down the road. If bowling, NASCAR, fishing, and hunting consider a sport, then WWE should be too. So yes WWE should be considered as a Sports. Period. The End...


. Because of corruption in major sports other activities are allowed to be rigged and still qualify as a sport.

Pro fails to realize there is a difference between corruption and staged performances. WWE has only fictional rules *inside* of the ring besides the wrestler's act. [1] Boxing has real rules inside the ring that lead to real penalties. Pro attempts to assert that because boxers are motivated by money to fight instead of victory, that activities don't need the freedom to compete for victory to be considered a sport. This logic is obviously flawed. Boxing gives boxers the freedom and possibility to win. "He had no chance, a zero possibility to win." Pro fails to provide any proof that this boxer has a zero percent chance to win; even so, the chance of a boxer winning is irrelevant. Boxing gives all wrestlers the choice to win. In WWE wrestlers are not given a choice to fight for victory. Wrestlers are simply instructed who will win and lose. A requirement for sports is the choice and freedom to compete for victory which WWE completely lacks.

*- [2] There are many real rules WWE wrestlers have to follow away from the ring. For a sport to be considered a sport, it needs rules relating to the actual sport. Not only rules pertaining to conduct away from the ring.

II. Fictionally competing to win and having fictional ranks makes WWE a real sport.

This logic is obviously flawed. I can fictionally have sex with my pillow and pretend it's a real person, but that doesn't mean I'm no longer a virgin. For WWE to be truly considered a sport, it needs to include wrestlers truly competing to win, and have real ranks. Not just fictionally competing and having fictional ranks. Zero plus zero does not equal one.

III. A wrestler was penalized for breaking rules outside of the ring; therefore, WWE is a sport.

An activity needs regulations directly relating to the activity itself to qualify as a sport, not just rules regarding conduct unrelated to ring. WWE sets up fictional rules for itself in the ring and scripts wrestlers to break those fictional rules in the ring. Such as the knocking out of referees, which wrestlers are not even fictionally penalized for doing.

IV. Since WWE is entertaining and the audience is not explicitly aware of which wrestler is scheduled to win, WWE matches being predetermined does not matter.

Pro fails to provide reason for why WWE being entertaining or its audience is relevant. Whether the audience is aware of which wrestler will win or not is irrelevant. [3]Pro's source does not mention the audience as a deciding factor for an activity to be considered a sport. Even though the audience is not aware which wrestlers specifically will win, most are still aware that the matches are predetermined. Matches in WWE are still predetermined. WWE does not contain real competition for victory. WWE still does not qualify as a sport.

V. "If bowling, NASCAR, fishing, and hunting consider a sport, then WWE should be too."

I do not understand how NASCAR, fishing, and hunting relate at all to WWE. Earlier pro was stating these activities are not true sports, but is now saying if they are true sports then WWE is a true sport as well. My best guess is that Pro is asserting these sports include individuals competing for pay checks rather than victory. Pro may be asserting that a pay check is the same as a victory. This a true in a sense of personal fulfillment, but not in the world of sports. True victory is in first place directly relating to the sport. If a proffesional football team reaches the super bowl and loses 0-66, but still earns millions of dollars, it does not count as a victory. That team has officially lost. No amount of money they earned will change that fact.

Final Remarks:
I enjoyed debating this topic and I thank pro for starting this debate. :)

Pro has succeeded in proving WWE qualifies for one of the three core requirements for a sport. That being physical involvement. That being said, Pro as failed to prove WWE's validity for the other two requirements. Those being competition and regulations. WWE does not qualify for the competition requirement as wrestlers do not have a choice to compete for true victory. Pay checks do not count as true victory. Wrestlers are instead predetermined to fictionally win or lose. WWE does not qualify for the rules and regulations requirement. WWE has strong regulations for wrestlers away from the ring (see source two) but almost no real rules directly relating to the ring itself. WWE's rules relating to the ring and ranking system are almost entirely fictional and wrestlers are commonly scripted to break said rules.

WWE wrestlers are simply glorified stunt devils for a performance. To say WWE is a real sport is the same as saying films involving stunt devils competing for pay checks are also a sport.

Arguments Pro did not address:

1. If competing to be entertaining was a sport, movies containing stunt devils would be considered a sport as well.

2. Wrestlers are not penalized for fictionally breaking the rules inside of the ring.

3. NASCAR drivers, golfers, fishing experts and bowlers still qualify as a sport under Pro's definition of sports.

4. The recreation/pastime requirement for sports overlaps with the definition of a game in Pro's source.

5.WWE can not being a true sport related recreation as the only way to commit to that recreation is to play pretend. Pretending is not a sport.


Debate Round No. 4
19 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by DawnBringerRiven 2 years ago
No other topic in mind. Thank you for a respectful debate
Posted by Nd2400 2 years ago
We will go back and forth on this topic. I will agree and you will disagreed. I don't think we will be changing each other opinion anytime soon. So i will leave it at that, for now. I still would want a other round, but not at the present moment. If you have another topic in mind shoot it....
Posted by DawnBringerRiven 2 years ago
Those are completely fictional rules. The ref is only fictionally disqualifying wrestlers. A sport needs real disqualifications and real matches. WWE does not include that.

Competition in sports requires wrestlers to compete for victory, not for entertainment. Entertainment isn't a sport the same as movies aren't sports, as I have said many times. The winners are predetermined. Wrestlers can't compete to win matches. If they compete for anything besides victory, it does not count as a sport. Real sport competitions only relate to victory. Competing to keep your job is not a part of sports. For the competition requirement, an activity must compete for victory only. Paychecks and a job are not victories in the realm of sports.

No definition of sport specifies that sports need to be physically demanding. I have looked through multiple dictionaries online. They only say that a sport includes physical exertion. Definitions never never never specify that a sport needs to be physically draining. Bowling has physical exertion among all other requirements, therefore it is a sport.

Yes Professional Bowling such as USBC does disqualify bowlers.
As I have said all sports are hobbies. You can play football as a hobby. You can play basketball as a hobby. Every physical activity in the world you can commit to as a hobby. An activity can be both a hobby and a sport. A hobby is simply an activity you enjoy doing. It can be anything from burping a criminal investigations. WWE is certainly, without a doubt, not a sport.
Posted by Nd2400 2 years ago
But it dies have rules. It have dq in matches, the ref can count you out, or dq you to lose. It suspended they own, either for rule in the ring or out. Oh yeah the ref can dq you if you hit them or if the wrestler use a weapon. In most cases if caught they will lise the match. They also have many others rules so yea. Andit us competitive, you have to win over the fans support either they gate you or live you, but if it natural then yiu be off the show, you need to perform good in the ring as well as out or you will not be they long. So it is competitive.
And yes bowling have skill set, nit enough physical use to be considered a sport. Does there players get suspended? Like in all the other pro leagues. Is bowling a hobby. Yes so a hobby does not fit to be a sport.
Posted by DawnBringerRiven 2 years ago
You still haven't said how WWE is related to NASCAR. You say NASCAR doesn't have physical involvement, and WWE does. So how is NASCAR at all related to WWE?
In the definition of sport you provided, it stated that sports require physical involvement. Your source did not specify that the sport needs to be physically intense. Your source only states that the activity needs physical involvement. Driving is physical. You use your physical body to control the car. NASCAR obviously requires skill. One slip up can lead to a fatal crash. NASCAR obviously includes competition. Bowling is physical. You toss a five to thirty pound ball down a lane. Bowling requires skill. You need to be able to toss the ball with the right amount of force, direction, and spin similar to the skill required for throwing a baseball. Bowling obviously has competition. Both NASCAR and Bowling obviously have rules. Under your own definition, bowling and NASCAR both meet the requirements for being a sport. "Bowling is a recreational hobby" All sports are recreational hobbies. You can play unofficial football, soccer, baseball, etc for fun. There are official bowling matches where you can win trophies.

I have already explained why WWE is not a sport. Wrestlers are not able to compete to truly win champion. Fictional competitions do not count the same as physically demanding movies about football do not count as sports.
WWE does not meet the requirement of competition.
Almost all of WWE's rules regarding to the ring are completely fictional.
WWE does not meet the requirement for rules.
WWE does meet the physical involvement requirement.
Since WWE does not meet two of the requirements for being a sport, it is not a sport.
Posted by whiteflame 2 years ago
>Reported vote: kevin24018// Mod action: Removed<

6 points to Con (S&G, Arguments, Sources). Reasons for voting decision: the winner is always predetermined, therefore not a sport.

[*Reason for removal*] The voter does not explain any of their point allocations, instead simply stating their views on the topic, which is not sufficient.
Posted by Nd2400 2 years ago
Ok, congrats on winning.
Still, wish i had that 5th round.

The reason i brought up nascar, and bowling because they were both called sports, and they didn't involve physical activity or very little of. Bowling shouldn't be a sport.

During bowling, you do not need nearly any physical strength or ability. Bowling is a recreational activity a game a hobby, not a sport. Sports not to involve running and perspiration from physical activity. It may take skill but there is not nearly enough physical activity. That is why bowling is not a sport.

If you can improve your performance by improving your conditioning, it's a sport. If you can physically train for it, it meets this aspect of the definition.

There needs to be an actual physical "skill" involved. By that, I mean that there are individual elements that can be developed to hone a greater ability.

There has to be a competition to see who is a winner. If there is no competition it is not a sport.

Three stages of what is considered a sport.
Does it require physical exertion or ability? Yes

Does it require physical skill? Yes

Is it a competition? Yes
WWE has all three.

Would want a rematch, but probably not right now....
So yeah, congrats on winning, either though i would only accept one of the votes vote because one was biased.
Posted by DawnBringerRiven 2 years ago
You still haven't said how NASCAR, bowling, etc. is related to WWE
Posted by Nd2400 2 years ago
Kevin: You only voted to get on my bad side. It is a sport, just like boating, NASCAR, bowing, and some other sports. You obviously don't know what go in the sport.
Posted by Nd2400 2 years ago
Yeah we did. It just i know i left some subjects out of this. But whatever now. Just have to see if any votes comes in...
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Sui_Generis 2 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Con had the clear advantage here. Pro failed to adequately address any of the major flaws pointed out.

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