Coming March 1, American Idol
will finally be stepping into the digital age. For the first time in the show's 10-year-history viewers will be able to vote for their favorites online, in addition to the phone lines and text messages that have been available for years. Fans can log in via their Facebook accounts to cast their votes, eliminating the possibility of multiple votes from one person. Here's how AI
creator Simon Fuller explained the change:
“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. 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.”
The first round of voting will take place after the male semifinalists take the stage on Tuesday, March 1; the women will compete the next night, and the season finalists will be announced March 3. Below is the rest of the press release for everything you need to know about voting online. Here's hoping the Idol
team has strengthened their servers and is ready to handle some major traffic, and congratulations! It only took them nine
seasons to embrace that crazy new technology called the Internet.
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.