The purpose of the Interim Championship
I am somewhat confuse on how UFC view the Interim Champion.
To me, the purpose of a Interim Championship is to keep a Division active when the Champion will be out for a extended amount of time (e.g. GSP injury). So the Interim champion should defend the title. This will make the "title unification match" more special and meaningful since they are pitting the number 1 guy (the champion) against the (disputed) number 1 guy (the I.C champion) who proved that he can be consider as a number 1 guy too by beating the challenger just like the champion.
But looking at the Welterweight title picture, it seems like the Interim title just means number 1 contender. If that is the case, why have this "make believe" belt?
When the Dana White first announced an Interim title bout between Carlos Condit and Nick Diaz, I am all for it since this mean guy like Condit, Diaz, Fitch (pre-hendricks), and Ellenberger can compete for a Championship when GSP is out. In that case, they won't "hold out" the division.
But post Condit/Diaz bout when a reporter question a potential Condit/Ellenberger bout for the I.C title, Dana white said "If I am condit, I will take the Diaz rematch if is being offered. If not, I will wait for GSP".
This means they don't really want Condit to defend the title unless it could led to big money matches (GSP/Diaz) when Condit can defend the title at least once before GSP is ready.
In that case, why have Interim title bout when it defeat the purpose of it? Some may say it is to do a 5 rounder fight but the UFC are already doing 5 rounder for their non-title big fights.