stories filed under: "bias"
Thu, May 28th 2009 4:33am
Apparently the outcome of the latest season of American Idol caused some controversy when the contestant generally regarded as the underdog of the two finalists was crowned the winner, provoking an angry backlash from his rival's fans. Now, they're pointing the finger at AT&T, alleging it helped skew the vote. This isn't the first time telecommunications have caught this sort of flak, as it's been a regular occurrence during the show's run that people have faced jammed phone lines when they've tried to vote. But this time, it's a little different. Apparently AT&T reps were at a couple of viewing parties organized by fans of the winning contestant, Kris Allen, and brought along a bunch of phones with them -- since, of course, only people on AT&T's wireless network can vote for the show's winner via text message. Then, the reps supposedly showed people at the parties how to "power text", or send in several votes at once. It seems unlikely that the votes spawned from the two parties were enough to tip the balance in Allen's favor, but the appearance of impropriety on the part of one of the show's major sponsors may be a bit more damaging.