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Sean Daly, Michelle Stark and Sharon Kennedy Wynne

American Idol takes votes online for the first time starting Tuesday, live performances start next Thursday

24

February

ai10_judges1.jpgThe revamped American Idol today confirmed a longstanding rumor the show would begin accepting votes online for the first time in the show's 10-season history.

Using their Facebook information, fans can vote on AmericanIdol.com for their favorite finalists -- pushing the last three tweens who aren't on the service to get an account, already.

Viewers are allowed a maximum 50 votes by this method, along with the traditional AT&T text messaging and old school voice line telephone calls.

It all starts after a special Tuesday performance episode featuring the 12 male semi-finalists. Next week, we'll actually see three Idol episodes, with the female semifinalists performing Wednesday and the finalists revealed in the show's first live episode Thursday (producers tape the first two performance episodes in advance to make sure everything runs smoothly).

I wonder how long it will take before some hacker figures a way to game this system?

Fox's release is below:

AMERICAN IDOL” OFFERS ONLINE VOTING FOR FIRST TIME EVER AT AMERICANIDOL.COM

Voting Via Toll-Free Phone Lines, AT&T Text Messaging & Online Begins After First Performance Show Tuesday, March 1, on FOX

For the first time ever, AMERICAN IDOL will allow viewers to vote for their favorite contestants online at americanidol.com. Sponsored by AT&T, online voting begins immediately after the first performance show airing Tuesday, March 1 (8:00-9:30 PM ET/PT) on FOX. In addition to online voting, fans will continue to be able to vote via toll-free phone lines, as well as unlimited text-message votes for AT&T wireless customers during the voting window (standard text-messaging rates may apply).

To vote online during the voting window, fans should visit americanidol.com and follow the directions. Fans will be required to log in using their Facebook account to access the AMERICAN IDOL voting page, which will feature the name and photo of each of the current contestants. To vote, fans will simply choose their favorite contestant, complete the security verification and submit their choice. After each performance show and during the online voting window, fans may cast up to 50 total online votes for that evening's performances. Only fans with a registered Facebook account in the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands will be able to cast their vote(s) online.



“We have been wanting to do online voting for several years, and now Facebook has offered us a secure solution and we are ready to go,” said Simon Fuller, Creator and Executive Producer, AMERICAN IDOL. “The show has always involved a high level of engagement with its viewers through texting and phone voting, and it’s great to expand on this tradition.”

In addition to online voting, fans will also have the opportunity to vote via toll-free phone lines and – if you’re an AT&T wireless customer – via text message. AT&T customers can text unlimited votes during the voting window. At the end of each performance show, the phone lines will open for at least two hours and AMERICAN IDOL viewers will be able to vote for their favorite contestant(s) via the branded toll-free telephone numbers (1-866-IDOLS-01, -02, etc.). AT&T wireless subscribers can use their cell phones to vote by texting the word “VOTE” to the four-digit short code (5701, 5702, etc.) that corresponds with the contestant of their choice.

AT&T customers can receive a text reminder after each performance show with all the contestants’ names and numbers. To sign up for the free Vote Number Reminder, text “IDOL” to 3003 (standard text-messaging rates may apply.)

The 12 male semifinalists take the stage for the first time Tuesday, March 1 (8:00-9:30 PM ET/PT), and the 12 female semifinalists sing their hearts out for America and the judges on the following night Wednesday, March 2 (8:00-9:30 PM ET/PT). Then, it’s the moment you’ve been waiting for when this season’s finalists are announced Thursday, March 3 (8:00-10:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed) on FOX.

[Last modified: Tuesday, March 1, 2011 11:51am]

    

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