Idol Loser's Fans Say AT&T Tainted Voting

Runner-up's fans cry foul on discovering Allen voters got phone company freebies
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 27, 2009 7:33 AM CDT

(Newser) – Furious fans of American Idol runner-up Adam Lambert are accusing AT&T of stuffing the virtual ballot box with votes for Kris Allen, the New York Times reports. Company reps allegedly attended Arkansas parties for native son Allen, providing phones that were for free text-messaging services and instructions on how to cast 10 votes at the touch of a button—a tactic Idol rules forbid.

"A few local employees brought a small number of demo phones with them and provided texting tutorials to those who were interested," a statement from AT&T said.” Lambert's fans say the company offered them no such tech help. AT&T is a major Idol sponsor and the only network on which viewers can vote. Fox declined to comment on the kerfuffle.