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Thread: Smoking Gun: AI2 Fans Complain to FCC

  1. #1
    Premium Member Bumpkin's Avatar
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    Feb 2003

    Smoking Gun: AI2 Fans Complain to FCC

    The Smoking Gun releases letters to the FCC from angry AI2 fans. Follow the link below to view emails from fans.


    JULY 10--After Ruben Studdard was crowned the newest "American Idol," outraged fans of runner-up Clay Aiken claimed that the show's voting was rigged to favor the morbidly obese Alabaman. Aiken acolytes were so upset that they swamped the Federal Communications Commission with letters accusing Fox Television of sabotaging Clay's chances by limiting his fans's ability to get through on phone lines and vote for the North Carolina beanpole. While the FCC received thousands of form letters calling for a probe of the "Idol" outcome, dozens of other fans authored more personalized letters to the government regulators (copies of which TSG obtained via a Freedom of Information request). Below you'll find an entertaining assortment of those letters, many of which include nasty swipes about Studdard's weight and the prodigious amount of flop sweat that pours forth as he croons. As one writer concluded, "something stinks here and it's not Rubens sweaty 205 jersey." But in case you think all the missives were coming from miffed teenyboppers, we've included letters from a chemical engineer and a 56-year-old Colorado businesswoman. (10 pages)

  2. #2
    I'm sure there were more eloquent, intelligent letters about the bigger issues that are happening with the FCC, some of it linked AI/fox and things like the state of radio today. Those letters they chose to show are totally nasty and are purely there as attention getters. Definitely, not all fans are like that.

  3. #3
    I wish they'd give it a rest already. The same "powers that be" that won Ruben the competition also put Clay in the runner up position.

  4. #4
    Yoffy lifts a finger... fluff's Avatar
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    Sep 2002
    I imagine a lot of the letters were written very soon after the competition ended when emotions were running high for many people.
    Those same people might well feel different now they have seen that coming in second has not lead to Clay being treated like an "also ran".

    IMO he has received far better treatment than Justin got as runner up to Kelly, so his fans should be pleased with that.

    Quote Originally Posted by srs_in_Oregon
    i havent decided if im even going to read the letters
    I didn't bother.
    The couple of examples they gave gave us in the piece were enough to let me know I wouldn't want to read more.

    I can understand people being upset/angry at not being able to get through, but this was a season long problem.

    How many times did we read "we're counting on you Aikenfan", because he always seemed to be able to call in multiple votes for Clay, when others sat by their phone getting in maybe one or two in the two hour period?
    Plus the Blue Meanine gang called in over 3000 between them once, when others here were unable to get in any.
    I know John sat unsuccessfully trying to get in votes for Ruben, while others could get through a number of times.

    The phone voting system is appalling and needs to be addressed.

    I think things have worked out pretty well for both of them and hope the people that wrote the comments don't still harbour ill-will about the situation.
    Last edited by fluff; 12-16-2005 at 09:22 PM.
    "That's Numberwang!"

  5. #5
    I e-mailed the FCC that Thursday morning, along with the NY Daily News, Newsweek, TV Guide, MSNBC, and anyone else I could think of. I even posted a thread here with the various e-mail addresses for anyone else who might have wanted to. I was enraged because of all the difficulties I'd had trying to vote and I wanted to make my anger known. Also, I truly loathe Rupert Murdoch and was happy to do anything I could to upset his evil empire.

    The funny part was that the FCC e-mailed me back. They said, almost apologetically, that they didn't get involved with what was actually said on a TV show because of the First Amendment (I was thrilled to learn that a federal agency under a Republican administration had actually heard of the First Amendment- the Bill Of Rights usually starts with the
    Second Amendment for them), and that I should contact the FTC with my complaint. I figured it was a Clay fan who had responded (Clay fans transcend politics).

    Anyway, I didn't bother contacting the FTC. MSNBC did run a story about it that night (interviewing a New York Post columnist, which infuriated me even more, since Murdoch owns the Post). I sulked and grieved for a few days, and when I returned to Clayworld, discovered that it had all worked out just fine.

  6. #6
    FORT Fogey srs_in_Oregon's Avatar
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    Apr 2003
    Silverton, Or
    to fluff, im sure people are fine with it now..i havent decided if im even going to read the letters, cause as a clay fan, i dont think its right to put ruben down, and i really dont know if i want to read about that.....but i think clay fans are fine, and the ones that arent just want a reason to be upset, and theyre the kind that will find scandel in anything. im just so proud of clay i cant put it into words. He's an awesome runner up and i like how you said clay's not being an "also ran" fluff, i just agree with everything you said..lol...
    Clay Aiken "when everyones working on it change isnt impossible, its inevetible"

  7. #7
    Hahaha.. this is one for a good laugh.

  8. #8
    FORT Fogey zippy's Avatar
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    Apr 2003
    Pacific Northwest
    I don't know what's sadder, that somebody probably went to college for four years to end up using phrases like "morbidly obese Alabaman",
    "Aiken acolytes" and "North Carolina beanpole" or that the FCC is spending my tax money to sort, store and make available to the public thousands of form letters about something they have decided isn't any of their business.

  9. #9
    On My Way Here Grisabella's Avatar
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    Apr 2003
    Portland, OR
    Quote Originally Posted by zippy
    I don't know what's sadder, that somebody probably went to college for four years to end up using phrases like "morbidly obese Alabaman",
    "Aiken acolytes" and "North Carolina beanpole" ...
    or that the FCC is spending my tax money to sort, store and make available to the public thousands of form letters about something they have decided isn't any of their business.
    Dogs have owners. Cats have staff. ;-D

  10. #10
    You know, I could have gone through the rest of my life without ever hearing about this crock of $&#*! I really wish people would open their eyes and ears and see and hear how things are going for both Clay and Ruben and just be happy for both of them instead of continually digging up this dead horse and beating it some more!

    I am a Clay fan, and sure I was disappointed when Clay didn't win. But not one time did I send an email, letter, make a phone call or post a single message of complaint to anyone about it. You don't always get what you want, things don't always turn out the way you wish they would...that's life, deal with it.

    I'm just grateful that Clay has gotten the opportunities that he has. First, second or whatever place he came in...who cares??!! Just because he came in second doesn't make him a loser, doesn't make him any less talented, doesn't hurt him in any way what so ever.

    I look at it this way, you've either got what it takes to make it or you don't. If you do and the right opportunity comes along, you'll make it. If you don't, no matter what kind of opportunity you have, you'll fade back into "real life".

    I happen to think Clay and Ruben both have what it takes to make it. They both have been given a tremendous opportunity to use their God given talents to acheive their dreams and I think they're doing a great job. They are diverse enough that they can both do that and not have to compete with one another.

    I think most fans of Clay and Ruben are sick to death of this constant comparison and would love for it to stop. People who keep dredging up this garbage and waving it around should just stop it. Clay and Ruben obviously have developed a solid friendship and want nothing but the best for each other...why can't all their fans (whether you like the other guy or not) do the same?

    Starting this thread and calling attention to the nasty, negative things that were written about Ruben winning the American Idol title serves no purpose other than to stir up bad feelings and cause controversy that is really unnecessary. Unfortunately it was probably started by a "Clay fan" and that's really a darn shame. Clay certainly wouldn't want a fan of his to be dissing his friend. Clay isn't going around acting like a loser...his fans shouldn't either.

    I wish Clay and Ruben nothing but the best, they're two incredibly talented individuals. The music world is big enough for both of them to make their mark and not have to leave marks on each other to do it.

    I hope the next time someone runs across this kind of trash, they leave it where it belongs.
    Last edited by OhioClayFan; 07-11-2003 at 05:31 AM.

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