Internet Gets American Idol Wrong

Lambert was clear Web favorite

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Every year one can take a quick a look at Internet activity and predict who’s going to win American Idol. It totally worked last year, with David vs. David, and years before that. This year, though the Internet bet wrong.

Looking back at the beginning of the season, the two finalists really did come from nowhere. Back in February, searchers pegged Danny Gokey and Alexis Grace as would-be finalists. While Gokey almost made it, it came down to the acoustic soul of Kris Allen and screamqueen Adam Lambert.

And it looks like everybody got it wrong, from the Internet to the judges. Lambert was clearly favored by the judges, even on occasions when he stepped far to the left of the right pitch. After a Allen’s tame duet early in the show with Keith Urban, Lambert got to be the new front man for KISS in full makeup—sounds like even the producers had favorites.

Hitwise reports searches for Lambert outnumbered Allen by five to one.

Biz360, analyzing social media data, also picked Lambert to win.

So did BettorsWorld, the first time they’ve been wrong—Allen beat the bookies!

Did anybody guess it right? Well, we did find one press release from ymarketing. Whatever they did—which they say was through a combined analysis of search and social media—they did it right. Ymarketing predicted Allen as the winner by looking at Facebook Lexicon, Google Trends, Google Insights, Compete, YouTube, and Twitter, as well as some unnamed data sources.


Internet Gets American Idol Wrong
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  • http://www.wtfis.com bvllets

    Dude was gay and well, I think the mainstay of people who watch this live in middle America and are homophobic. Harvey Levin called this one on TMZ when he said that America wouldn’t let him win. It’s not like it matters though. He’ll still have a good career.

    By good career I mean make money, not good music. I’ve heard strange peoples farts that sound better than the crap music from American Idlers.

  • Tinkrbell

    I wanted to see Danny, Adam and Allison in the final.
    Never thought Kris’d be there.. but then again, I’m not in America, where the boy-next-door-look seems so powerful.
    Adam was the most versatile of all of the singers, the most professional.
    Danny was my personal favorite and Allison’s voice.. phew.. that young and that talented.
    I suspect Kris will not sell as well as some other AI winners.

  • http://0 Guest

    The internet is no place to decide an outcome of anything. The internet can be fixed by 12 year olds, to any outcome they desire.
    The best never win in internet games. Look at the Presidential election. Duh.

  • http://gong-cd.com Daya

    Adam Lambert will be an American Icon. I think what happens is that only certain segments of the population vote. Was it a singing contest? Yeah but the winner is not always decided by who has the most talent. I intend to follow his career and buy what ever he offers.
    PS senior citizen

  • http://www.WaikikioceanfrontRentals.com Scott

    I don’t think so. You can see Kris’s type of performing in any lounge show across America and it would be even more entertaining that what he can offer.

    Adam is a showman and an original, he would pull people into his concerts and wow them. I would pay to see him in a minute.

    AI got this one wrong, the year to come we will see everyone excited to see what Adam does next, we all know what Kris will do, sing soft ballards till we are bored to death.

    Is this a conspiracy ??? Kris, then Shaun a gymnast being voted a better dancer than a ex-Dallas Cowboy cheerleader….. come on !!!

  • C Wise







    • Cathi up North

      The world is made up of all kinds of music lovers. Personally, I liked both Kriss and Adam, although their styles were totally different.

      Adam might be more entertaining in concert, but I don’t think I could listen to a CD of him all day long…the screaming would give me a headache.

      I still like to listen to my favorites over and over again and I think Kris would fit that bill…just the way I used to play my 45 rpms over and over until it was worn out. Kris is Classic and has a broader appeal.

  • Guest

    Adam was a true entertainer, whatever the type of song. His concerts would be amazing whereas Kris Allen (who???) was just a nothing, not a particularly good singer and no personality whatsoever. Something definitely went wrong with the voting!

    • K,Yarrell

      America is a very odd and wonderful country. Adam Lambert exhibits more talent in his baby toe than what I have seen American Idols in all its seasons. I am not sad a blue because I voted for Adam several times, to no avail.

      The bigger story is that America is yet, again to claim and desire entertainment from the “darker brother.” Chris is a cookie cutout. He could have easly been the secret Osmond. Chris may be as talented as toast but Adam has so many colors when you see him paint with his voice. at the end of the day, Adam has been freed to produce an album worthy of his voice and artistry. While Chris will be doomed to sing that terrible song that Kara wrote, as he fades into the sunset.

      Once again here is my country, too afraid to be bold and to be brave. They voted in O’bama; maybe that us all we can expect of America for the rest of the decade.

  • http://home.pushstart.org Mavro Syvannah

    I am a former recording studio owner, a musician, a singer, an actor, and advertising marketing executive. I’m behind the scenes in hundred of hits, adding my touch, a bell, a whistle and the little suggestions that no one notices. This year I couldn’t watch AI for some reason mostly the line up that the judges put together for the show. Guess they had to work with what they are given. Why I am posting is to let everyone read this fact of the business. Country, M.O.R, and A.C. are 90% of the American music buying public. Pop, Rock, HipHop and almost everything on Big City Radio, is 10 cents on the dollar. Cool people and what cool people listen to is 10 cents on the dollar. There are not that many cool people, but it may seem like it because we make a bigger noise. Most folk are completely musically illiterate, so you can sell them anything they can tap a toe to, but anything heaven forbid “different” then its too far of a mental musical bone stretch for them. For example once in the 80’s i recorded some Ballady and Shiftitelly and 2 billion people on Earth love it, but lets say maybe 1 in 2,000 American even know what it is. Rock and retro glamrock slash Elvis is a small marketplace in relation to the mainstream outside the major cities in America. For those who want to know, AC is Adult Contemporary, and MOR in radio is Middle of the Road on the play list. Lambert won for me. Sorry Kris I bet you are a ferry nice guy but to use a phrase from Cowell, “forgettable”. Peace Out.

  • http://www.abundantace.com/ ace

    I have always heard that the idol polls are fixed no matter who votes what. Don’t know if there’s any truth to it.

    • http://tripleclicksreview.yolasite.com Kelo

      I am not a music guru whatsoever! Just a normal woman in a Small African country in Malawi.

      I watched American Idols a few times when it launched, then forgot about it, then watched when they were just 3 left, Gokey, Kris and Adam.

      I was watching with my daughters (9 and 7) and they both agreed with me that Kris was good! In the finals, Kris really had a challenge with the last 2 songs but I still felt he was a better man and when Adam was singing his last 2 songs, my 9 yr old daughter even said, “IiiH, mum, he is screaming… that’s not good singing, is it?”. Well, the judges felt so and I was shocked to hear all of them, except Randy (and he was booed by the audience I think), heaping praises on Adam and ignoring the “screaming”!

      So, for me, it matters not what the internet pollsters said, we (my daughters and I) had our eyes on Kris, and while we were pleasantly surprised that he won it (due to the obvious fixation by the judges and the audience on Adam), we were glad we were right all along, and we rejoiced as if we knew him! hahhah!

      As a diversion, the little boy, Noah, from Rwanda, rocked….. He has such a great stage presence… I hope someone will notice him and “nurture” that maiden talent!

  • http://ecash10.com Ecash10

    For me it was Adam….in fact everyone else thought so as well.
    If you look at the finale again, after they announced his name as winner, you’ll hear Kris say…”it should be Adam.” Now why would the winner want to say something like that.

    Adam is a real star. He doesn’t even need AI. The fact is AI has given him the platform to have his face and voice heard all over the world. He’ll be big soon. I agree with a lot of others that Kris will be as forgettable as some previous AI winners. Only winners like Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood have become huge stars. Others who didn’t make it like Chris Daughtry and Jennifer Hudson have gone on to huge success. I don’t see Kris doing it big for long. Yes, he will be in the beginning but he’ll fizzle out like the rest of the former winners like Taylor Hicks.

    Adam Rocks

  • MultimediaMarcus

    The title “Internet Gets American Idol Wrong” is very biased and opinionated. Did the internet get the Presidential election of Barack Obama “wrong” too?

    This is a democracy. The person that gets the most votes wins! It’s that simple. If Adam was meant to win, he would have gotten more votes. It’s not about right vs wrong, or even who has the most talent. Ultimately AI is a popularity vote based on talent, looks, personality and “likability”. Kris has more long term marketing ability. Adam would have ultimately been caught in some transexual scandal in less than 2 years. AI does not need the embarrassment.

    Kris is a clean cut guy, Christian, grounded and most of all multi-talented. I, for one, am glad he won. Don’t get me wrong…Adam is extremely talented and a nice guy too…but America can only take so much tongue screaming.

    The votes are FINAL. It’s all about the numbers, not you’re opinion. Numbers don’t lie.

    • Unsinkable3

      Did the internet get the Presidential election of Barack Obama “wrong” too?

      Yes – it’s all about numbers and ACORN padded every ballot box with homeless, fake, and bogus votes. It was not about who was the better leader; it was about who was more popular and appeared to know something that we wanted to believe. How’s that “Hope and Change” working out for you now? I know I got fooled! Lost my job, lost my house, lost my car, lost my wife – all because I bought into the bogus dream. 28 and stupid no more.

      • John

        I, for one, am glad Adam came in second. Now he won’t have his career “molded” by AI execs. He can do his own thing, and not worry about AI’s nonsense. He will go on to better things, and Kris will fade into obscurity, as it should be.

        As for the person who said Kris is a good Christian, how do you know this? Because he attends church? Yeah, we all know that automatically makes you a great Christian, right? Get off your high horse, and let people be, and quit hating! WWJD?

  • TonyB

    Ever since you could vote on the internet for free as many times as you want, the Idol voting has been skewed by votefortheworst.com and sites like it.

    I am not supporting that site, quite the opposite. Vote For The Worst has been skewing voting results for years by plugging their JOKE vote. Remember the Newfie last year??? A VFTW placement by playing to the mischievious side of the internet voting public to see how far they could carry someone with no talent through to the end.

    Last Nielsen reporting had American Idol viewership slipping and no wonder. Why would the public that is genuinely interested in seeing the most talented watch a travesty in the making by the hand of a few who are no different than hackers attempting to breach security on a banking system, only they have cracked it and continue to wreak havoc.

    American needs to change their voting system or possibly go back to paid votes to ensure that the vote is just.

  • http://www.DavidBatchelor.visit.ws David

    I was pretty much blown away when Kris took it out, I was sure it would be Adam, even though I wanted Danny to win the final.

    Can we really determine what the outcome will be when it comes down to the masses of people?

    Independent Profit Center
    AliveMax tv

  • Guest

    I used to watch the show both Canadian an American for a couple years but I just don’t like them any more. Just like flowers they shrivel and fade away into the sunset of time.

  • Musically Inclined – Age defined

    Try this, next season. When the finalists get down to 4 or 5, start recording the show, but walk into the other room to see who entertains you best, when you’re not able to SEE him/her. Your best entertainer is the one who can capture your heart and soul by their vocals and musical entertainment. Visual is nice and you want that, too. That’s why you’re recording the show.

    After you decide who did best from the other room, when you couldn’t see them, watch the recording and see who did best. You’ll be quite surprised at who is “best”. Keep in mind that your best music artists are able to entertain you on the radio and/or from an album. You seldom see them perform. But, when you do see them, you want to SEE AND FEEL what they are singing, even more.

    For us, Adam was #1, this season. But, #1 doeesn’t usually make #1. Why should they? 2 or 3 seasons ago, we saw a great artist bow out early. We have watched it happen a couple of times. What is the prize for winning? A contract? Is the winner locked into a contract? What about 2nd place and 3rd place? Are they locked into a contract, or able to choose from multiple offers? If they are able to choose, why wouldn’t they prefer 2nd or 3rd place? They already have a fan base, just because they did so well on AI. All they need is a company who will back them and offers them the biggest deal.

    Go Adam! We’ll see and hear your album long before we “see” Chris’s. Or, is it Kris? Whatever. Chris is entertaining, but not from the next room. He’s Karaoke from the next room. Try and you’ll see what I mean.

  • Bob

    Who the hell won American Idol this year son? You got me in maze there for a sec.

    • Diana

      I don’t care. In light of much more pressing events plaguing our country today that DO concern me, please take me off your email list.

  • Ken

    By ken (WPN reader) – Tue, 05/26/2009 – 12:51
    Singing Contest?
    Ok, let’s get one thing straight. American Idol is not a singing contest! It is also not a talent contest. IT’S A REALITY SHOW. It wasn’t “cast” with the 13 best singers they could find, it was the 13 most interesting stories they could find.

    Come on! Some of the people they picked for the top 13 couldn’t sing their way out of a warm shower.

    Look at how diverse the 13 finalists were. They covered the range of age, sex and ethnicity well and then the American public got to vote on who stayed and who went. It wasn’t about who was most talented, it was who was most popular among the people who were voting.

    Once Gokey was gone, Kris picked up all of the “non-rocker” votes. All of the people who probably would admit that Adam could out-sing Kris, but they really didn’t like him or his style of music.

    Adam was out there on the “edge” too far to garner the middle of the road votes. Too extreme! But, the man can sing!!!

    • Paul G

      I agree. I boycotted this program about the second season after I brought an artist I produce – She’s great of course…whatever. My point is to help people to understand this is not a talent show, not star search , its actually more like reality in that, when you take an artist to a record label, the ability of singing is not that important. its like saying that the best soda pop is the one that fizzes the most. Not so, the best soda is the one that the most people buy and like…and “coolest” not actual ingredients etc… So, also, please look at the credits on idol, do it frame by frame…you’ll see they cover their ass really well in case you think its totally what you see…its not. You should see the contracts we were asked to sign…worse than N sync’s. It was basically ” We will now own you for 5 years , 5 records etc… we can do whatever we want to your name, image and anything in and to your being on the show may be manipulated to the producers liking or dislike…in perpetuity etc…”

      So you all that still watch this show, proove we don’t like fair, we like reality TV. So let me ask you this people:

      Idol’s ratings start to drop, people being to “know” whats going to happen….what do you do? maybe get a result that outrages everyone so they write things like our author did, thereby everyone is newly inspired to once again get into idol , and they get free press in blogs, they get back into the consciousness …

      You know that you are all sheep, thats not a negative comment, I am too. I am with certain shows but I know they are shows. Guilty pleasures yes…but I don’t throw a “no justice” call and become outraged when they kill off a co-star and that is just what everyone is doing, chalk up one more for Idol…viewers none.

      Its a TV show. ALL TV SHOWS are in one business ONLY. THE ADVERTISING BUSINESS. Please remember that.


  • Guest

    First of all there are NO losers on that show. Secondly, NO one gets voted OFF, they simply receive less votes than the rest.

    Yes, we all love Adam Lambert. He was the most outrageous, the boldest ever, quite a showman too, and what a range he had with that voice. If I was to see one of the finalist in concert it would be Lambert for sure. But if I was to buy an album and listen to it again and again, you bet it would be Kris Allen. They are both really talented, although quite different. I could barely decide who to vote for, but decided on Allen as he probably is the most talented being that he could also play piano and guitar. But that’s not supposed to count since it’s a singing competition, right? So, why do they even allow instruments in the first place? Anyway, I do enjoy hearing Allen sing and I’m not sure I could handle too much of Lamberts wailing voice. He’s nice to look at though, and damn entertaining. His theatrics is his trademark.

    Who is the winner really? The one who gets a million and get’s owned by Idol? Or the other one who was one of two of the most famous people in America for a week who will have artistic freedom in his future? They all got massive exposure and have millions of fans and will be alot more than they were before Idol. So, really who could ask for anything more? How about a Ford hybrid? Idol makes dreams come true and not just one name per year. So, did everyone get it right? Of course they did, otherwise that would mean I am wrong LOL, and I haven’t been wrong about the winners since Idol started.

    Note: they judges do try to stear your opinion, but we can think and listen for ourselves. On a happy note: Idol doesn’t just make dreams happen for singers, but they make dreams happen with Idol gives back, Horray for that! Anyway, stop complaining everyone, it’s entertaining, right?

  • http://www.willowtreegiftshop.com.au JenniC

    Okay. I’ve read through these comments. Esp. the ones about Adam being a great singer. Are you kidding? As one guy said earlier in this thread, listen to it without watching it – well if you did that all you’d hear from Adam is his screaming. Can he sing without screaming? But I digress. I’m from Australia and couldn’t vote (I don’t vote on the aussie one either) but I would have voted for Alison. A rock chick if ever there was one. A young Chrissy Amphlett (Australia’s Divinyls). Fighting over Adam and Kris with Alison in the background – are you kidding?

  • http://geminiss.blujay.com Sue

    When it was down to about 8 or 9, I predicted that the top two would be Adam and Allison. So 50% right. Admittedly I did not vote, I never do. That gutsy voice of Allison, I so hope that in the years to come we hear more from her. She is young and will probably be a dynamite figure in the future. I agree with many that Adam has a stage presence and would sell a concert ticket over Kris and that Kris will probably fade into the sunset like many before him. I say GO ALLISON!

  • Guest

    The whole thing of “vote as many times as you can get through” skews the entire premise. As consumers, voters will only buy one CD per artist and so should only get one vote per artist. If they want to vote for more than one performer, that’s something else. But that’s never going to happen. The producers want to be able to tout the millions of votes they’re getting and the only way to get those impressive numbers is to allow the multiple votes concept.

    As long as that’s the case, the kids with endless time, and special interest groups will control the final vote.

  • http://www.warriorforum.com/members/snesemulators.html Lucrecia Mcpeek

    fantastic, I have a few questions though is it ok to post them here?

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