AMERICAN IDOL offers online voting for first time ever

Voting via toll-free phone lines, AT&T text messaging & online begins sfter first performance show Tuesday, March 1, on FOX 50

American Idol

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By Jason Matthews

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) on FOX 50. 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.

Emmy Award-winning AMERICAN IDOL is created and executive-produced by Simon Fuller, Founder, 19 Entertainment, a division of CKX, Inc; and executive-produced by Cecile Frot-Coutaz, CEO, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.; Ken Warwick, Executive Producer, FremantleMedia North America, Inc.; and Nigel Lythgoe, President, Big Red 2 Entertainment. AMERICAN IDOL has been No. 1 among Adults 18-49 for the past seven consecutive seasons and currently ranks as the No. 1 television show of the 2010-11 season.

About AT&T
AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is a premier communications holding company. Its subsidiaries and affiliates – AT&T operating companies – are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. With a powerful array of network resources that includes the nation’s fastest mobile broadband network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet and voice services. A leader in mobile broadband, AT&T also offers the best wireless coverage worldwide, offering the most wireless phones that work in the most countries. It also offers advanced TV services under the AT&T U-verse® and AT&T │DIRECTV brands. The company’s suite of IP-based business communications services is one of the most advanced in the world. In domestic markets, AT&T Advertising Solutions and AT&T Interactive are known for their leadership in local search and advertising. In 2010, AT&T again ranked among the 50 Most Admired Companies by FORTUNE® magazine.

© 2011 AT&T Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. Mobile broadband not available in all areas. AT&T, the AT&T logo and all other marks contained herein are trademarks of AT&T Intellectual Property and/or AT&T affiliated companies. All other marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

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