Ballot box stuffing | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Ballot box stuffing

Posted By on Wed, May 27, 2009 at 6:59 AM

It won't go away. I refer to questions about the "sanctity" of the vote in the American Idol contest that saw Conway's Kris Allen emerge the winner. From the NY Times:

LOS ANGELES — AT&T, one of the biggest corporate sponsors of “American Idol,” might have influenced the outcome of this year’s competition by providing phones for free text-messaging services and lessons in casting blocks of votes at parties organized by fans of Kris Allen, the Arkansas singer who was the winner of the show last week.

Representatives of AT&T, whose mobile phone network is the only one that can be used to cast “American Idol” votes via text message, provided the free text-messaging services at two parties in Arkansas after the final performance episode of “American Idol” last week, according to the company and people at the events.

There appear to have been no similar efforts to provide free texting services to supporters of Adam Lambert, who finished as the runner-up to Mr. Allen.

... The efforts appear to run afoul of “American Idol” voting rules in two ways. The show broadcasts an on-screen statement at the end of each episode warning that blocks of votes cast using “technical enhancements” that unfairly influence the outcome of voting can be thrown out.

And the show regularly states that text voting is open only to AT&T subscribers and is subject to normal rates.

PS -- The Huckster has Idol Allen on his weekend show on Fox.

UPDATE: Please note our afternoon update that both Fox and AT&T have issued official statements. They defended the voting and proclaimed Kris Allen the legitimate winner.


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