DialIdol

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DialIdol
Dialidol screenshot.jpg
Screen shot of DialIdol software
Original author(s) James Hellriegel Jr.
Stable release v3.5.0.0
Operating system Windows ME/2000/XP/2003/Vista
Website http://www.dialidol.com

DialIdol is both the name of a computer program for Microsoft Windows and its associated website that tracks voting trends for American Idol contestants. The program allows users to automatically vote for the American Idol contestants of their choice using their PC's modem. The program then reports back to the main website, which keeps track of the results based on the percentage of calls for each contestant that result in a busy signal. DialIdol assumes that more busy signals means more callers are attempting to vote for that contestant.[1] DialIdol was created during the fourth season of American Idol and was released to the public at the start of the fifth season.

Users can choose to vote equally for their chosen contestants, choose to keep certain contestants "safe" (by voting for their chosen contestant who is ranked the lowest), or choose to keep certain contestants "unsafe" (by voting for the lowest-ranked contestant who is not on their list).

In addition to American Idol, the software may also be used to vote for Dancing with the Stars, So You Think You Can Dance, and The X Factor. In 2006, DialIdol also supported Celebrity Duets and Canadian Idol. DialIdol did not support So You Think You Can Dance season 8.

Notable Predictions[edit]

Season Four Predictions[edit]

Season Five Predictions[edit]

  • In the final 12, DialIdol predicted that either Ace Young, Kevin Covais, or Lisa Tucker would be eliminated and that Melissa McGhee would make it through. Melissa McGhee was eliminated.
  • In the final 11, DialIdol incorrectly predicted that Elliott Yamin would be eliminated. Kevin Covais was eliminated.
  • In the final 9, DialIdol predicted that either Elliott Yamin or Mandisa would be eliminated. Mandisa was eliminated.
  • In the final 6, DialIdol predicted that either Paris Bennett or Kellie Pickler would be eliminated. Kellie Pickler was eliminated.
  • In the final 4, DialIdol predicted that either Chris Daughtry or Katharine McPhee would be eliminated. Chris Daughtry was eliminated.
  • In the finale, DialIdol correctly predicted that Taylor Hicks would win.

Season Six Predictions[edit]

Season Seven Predictions[edit]

Season Eight Predictions[edit]

  • In the final 11, DialIdol predicted that either Megan Joy, Allison Iraheta or Alexis Grace would be eliminated. Alexis Grace was eliminated.
  • In the final 10, DialIdol had its only inaccurate prediction of the season. Matt Giraud was definitively predicted to be safe and not in the bottom 3, but he was actually the 2nd lowest vote getter.
  • In the final 7 (i), DialIdol predicted that either Kris Allen, Matt Giraud, Allison Iraheta, Anoop Desai, Adam Lambert or Lil Rounds would be eliminated. Matt Giraud received the lowest number of votes, but was saved by the judges.
  • In the final 4, DialIdol predicted that either Danny Gokey, Allison Iraheta or Kris Allen would be eliminated. Allison Iraheta was eliminated.
  • In the finale, DialIdol did not make any prediction. Kris Allen won.

Season Nine Predictions[edit]

  • In the final 7(i), DialIdol did not make a prediction. Michael Lynche received the lowest number of votes, but was saved by the judges.
  • In the finale, DialIdol correctly predicted that Lee Dewyze would win.

Season Ten Predictions[edit]

  • For the top 24, DialIdol predicted that both Tatynisa Wilson and Julie Zorrilla were definitely safe, Tatynisa particularly so, but both were sent home. This broke a long streak of correct predictions, as DialIdol was 100% accurate in season nine. Notably, this was the first season of the program to offer online voting through Facebook. The evening before the results show, the creator of the website noted that he had reason to believe that both predictions, particularly Tatynisa's, were skewed due to unusual busy signal patterns.
  • For the top 11 (i), DialIdol predicted that either Casey Abrams or Thia Megia would be eliminated. Casey Abrams was the lowest vote getter, but was saved by the judges.
  • For the top 9, DialIdol predicted that either Jacob Lusk, Stefano Langone, or Paul McDonald would be eliminated and that Pia Toscano would definitely be safe and not in the bottom 3. Pia Toscano was eliminated.
  • From top 8 week to top 5 week, DialIdol posted updates stating that the prediction on Jacob Lusk was inflated due to low raw numbers, until Jacob was eliminated.
  • On the day of the finale (results), DialIdol correctly predicted Scotty McCreery had beaten Lauren Alaina.

Season Eleven Predictions[edit]

  • For the male side of the top 25, the DialIdol predictions were drastically changed when the Pacific Coast started voting. The margin of error was changed to apply in both directions.
  • For the top 11, DialIdol predicted that either Heejun Han or Erika Van Pelt would be eliminated. Shannon Magrane was eliminated.
  • For the top 10, DialIdol predicted that either Heejun Han or DeAndre Brackensick would be eliminated. Erika Van Pelt was eliminated.
  • For the top 7 (i), DialIdol predicted that Joshua Ledet would make it through and not be in the bottom 3 and that Elise Testone would be eliminated, but they were both in the bottom 3. Jessica Sanchez was the lowest vote getter, but was saved by the judges.
  • For the top 5, DialIdol predicted that Skylar Laine would make the top 4 and that Phillip Phillips would be eliminated. Skylar Laine was eliminated.
  • For the top 4, DialIdol predicted that Joshua Ledet would be eliminated. Hollie Cavanagh was eliminated.
  • On the day of the finale (results), DialIdol correctly predicted that Phillip Phillips had beaten Jessica Sanchez.

Season Twelve Predictions[edit]

  • For the top 10, DialIdol predicted that either Burnell Taylor or Curtis Finch, Jr. would be eliminated. Finch was eliminated.
  • For the top 9, DialIdol predicted that Paul Jolley would make it through and not be in the bottom 3 and that Janelle Arthur would be eliminated. Paul Jolley was eliminated.
  • For the top 8, Dialidol predicted that Burnell Taylor would be eliminated. Devin Velez was eliminated.
  • For the top 7, DialIdol correctly predicted that Burnell Taylor would be eliminated.
  • For the top 6, DialIdol predicted that Janelle Arthur would be eliminated but Lazaro Arbos was eliminated.
  • For the top 5, DialIdol correctly predicted that Janelle Arthur was eliminated.
  • For the top 4 (both weeks), DialIdol predicted that Angie Miller would be eliminated. Amber Holcomb was eliminated.
  • For the top 3, DialIdol correctly predicted that Angie Miller was eliminated.
  • For the top 2, DialIdol correctly predicted that Candice Glover would win over Kree Harrison.

Controversy[edit]

Legal challenge[edit]

In March 2006, DialIdol received a "cease and desist" order from Fox, who alleged copyright infringement. According to the site's creator, Jim Hellriegel, Fox's lawyers also told him that his site was acting as a potential "spoiler," as they claimed it posted results. The site was taken down temporarily. After consulting with lawyers and determining that what they were doing was legal, the Web site, with a redesigned logo and other cosmetic changes, was put back online.[2]

Contestant rankings[edit]

Because DialIdol does not take text messages into account, and because of other problems with measuring busy signals, there exists a margin of error for each contestant's score. Because of this, often 50% or more of the contestants are predicted to be in danger of being voted off, or DialIdol does not make any prediction, as was the case for the final 3 of Season 6 (when Melinda Doolittle was eliminated) and the finale of Season 8 (when Kris Allen won).[1] Also, DialIdol has been criticized for its impreciseness in ranking the contestants; however, the program's creator has asserted that DialIdol "was never designed to get the results slot for slot right", and stresses that DialIdol is "for entertainment purposes only".[3]

Power dialing[edit]

According to the American Idol producers, monitors are in place to identify and remove "power dialers," which use technical enhancements to their phone systems to allow for multiple votes.[4] DialIdol is not a power dialer, according to Fox spokeswoman Jennifer Sprague. "Using a modem dialer is not the same as ‘power dialing.' A person manually using a redial button on a standard telephone can generate as many call attempts as a modem dialer.”[1]

References[edit]

External links[edit]