April 8, 2010
Women & Blacks: No Chance on 'Idol'?
Evidence suggests preteen white girls control the vote -- and they go for the "cute boys"
In a new column titled "Tween Girls Hijack Idol," Richard Rushfield of The Daily Beast suggests that white males have a distinct advantage over other American Idol contestants because 11-year-old white girls do most of the voting with their incessant texting -- the principal means of voting for artists on the popular show.
"[T]ext messaging, it can now be definitively said, has transformed the electorate of American Idol from a diverse microcosm of the nation’s broad middle, to a playground for willful 11-year-olds seeking to reshape the world in their image," writes Rushfield. "Armed with their text messaging superpowers . . . tween girls have stormed the ramparts of Idol democracy and—depending on your perspective—either wreaked havoc upon our national pastime, or given an aging show a fresh wind of underage relevance. Either way, they have made the Idol stage a very different place, and nowhere was the heavy hand of the tween dictators felt more strongly than at the Idoldome during Wednesday night’s elimination show, where in the first big shocker of the season, Michael 'Big Mike' Lynche found himself with the week’s lowest vote total for the week.
"Not only do tween girls seem to prefer their Idols be male, but they also seem to prefer them to be white," he continues, adding that "careful study does point to an irrefutable fact, that in the past few years, 'cute boys' have come to dominate American Idol to an unprecedented degree."
Read the rest of Rushfield's fascinating findings and musings here.