Is American Idol Rigged?


I am a big fan of the American experience and the American experiment [excluding the many mistakes we’ve made and continue to make of course]  and American Idol in particular, and I do not believe that Idol is rigged.    I have read (I think it was in Newsweek during the Ruben Studdard / Clay Aiken controversies) that producers do not treat all contestants equally however, so if by “rigged” one means to ask “is it unfair” I think the answer is almost certainly yes, but not unfair enough to make a huge difference in the results, which are overwhelmingly a function of millions of votes by people all over the country.

Especially with the recent early departure of favorite American Idol Contestant Pia Toscano, some have suggested as they always do that the voting is not representative but I think it’s brilliantly representative in the sense that the show manages to build popularity and a fan base for even those that get  eliminated, many of whom wind up with contracts from the American Idol producers.

Many Idols – even losers – go on to become huge stars like Daughtry, Clay Aiken, and Jennifer Hudson.   American Idol is the most fertile ground for stardom in decades – perhaps in the history of entertainment – and they aren’t going to mess that up by rigging the results.

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About JoeDuck

Internet Travel Guy, Father of 2, small town Oregon life. BS Botany from UW Madison Wisconsin, MS Social Sciences from Southern Oregon. Top interests outside of my family's well being are: Internet Technology, Online Travel, Globalization, China, Table Tennis, Real Estate, The Singularity.
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4 Responses to Is American Idol Rigged?

  1. FoolsGold says:

    I guess there is variability in the scheduling of a guest and in the digits assigned to them for voting, I wonder if the producers can exert control over the load balancing so as to create “busy signals” or something but such blocking would block any votes not just a disfavored contestants votes.

    Some subjectivity may be involved, I don’t know since I don’t watch the show being tone deaf myself. I know I think Trump’s Next Apprentice was rigged I think even Annie Duke complained about that.

    I think those whose hometown is an urban area probably get more hometown votes than someone from West Possum Trot or the like.

  2. Toshia Betenbaugh says:

    merican Idol was created based on the British show Pop Idol, which was in turn inspired by Popstars, a show TV producer Nigel Lythgoe saw in Australia and brought over to Britain. Using the idea from Popstars of employing a panel of judges to select singers in audition, then adding other elements such as telephone voting by the viewing public (which at the time was already in use in shows such as the Eurovision Song .

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  4. Denisha says:

    Excellent post. I’m facing a few of these issues as well..

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