unwritten rules

Hi Scott – 

I was reading an article today, and there was a line that was talking about a camera shot of Stephanie McMahon that panned her from top to bottom.  The author said something like "so much for the 'shoot from the waist up' rule".  I had never heard of that, so I was curious as to what other unofficial/official mandates you have heard of? 

I know that the referees weren't supposed to be named for a while – and if you want to go old school, there was the "international objects" era of NWA/WCW.   As a side question, is there a policy in the WWE about the ring gear everyone wears?  I noticed it the other day that a LOT of the guys wear the black trunks/kneepads/tights – is that just because everyone wants to wear black, or is that a new rule, too?

Keep up the good work!

Never heard about the waist up rule, but there are DEFINITELY rules and many of them are written.  International distributors of WWE's shows are explicitly given a list of things that can and cannot be said about the product when they record their own commentary, for instance.  Not to mention that Vince hates the terms "belt" and "title" and "strap" and insists on only calling them "Championships", which is mostly why I only ever call them belts and titles.  For a while you couldn't say referee names but now you can apparently.  Up until the pipebomb promo in 2011 you couldn't say "wrestling" or "wrestler".  There was a whole LIST of new rules when WWE went HD in 2008 dealing with proper tanning procedures and grooming.  
As for the gear, new guys have it designed for them by the front office and basically wear what they're told to wear.  Those who can afford it (ie, Punk) can basically have whatever they want made for them as long as it's approved by those in power.  And hey, some guys just like wearing black trunks and boots.  Why mess with a classic?