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Television IT

When Vote Counting Goes Bad 128

Posted by timothy
from the it-increments-the-database-or-else-it-gets-the-hose dept.
ZipK writes "Television singing competition The Voice disclosed on Wednesday 'inconsistencies' with the tallying of on-line and SMS-based voting. Although host Carson Daly claimed the show wanted to be 'completely upfront,' the explanation from their third-party vote counter, Telescope, was anything but transparent. In particular, Telescope claims that disregarding all on-line and SMS-based voting for the two nights in question left no impact on the final results, but they haven't provided any detail of the 'inconsistency' or their ability to predict a complete lack of impact. Sure, it's only The Voice; but tomorrow it could be American Idol, and by next month, America's Got Talent."
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When Vote Counting Goes Bad

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  • Re:News for nerds (Score:4, Informative)

    by Capt.DrumkenBum (1173011) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @01:45PM (#43677143)
    Thank you. I came to post exactly this.
    Without the question mark.
  • Re:News for nerds (Score:5, Informative)

    by gstoddart (321705) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @01:56PM (#43677295) Homepage

    Well, admittedly, I don't care about the reality shows.

    But since there are laws about how you have to handle contests and the like, they need to really be able to prove that ignoring those votes had no effect on the outcome, or they could open themselves up for lawsuits.

    Basically they'd have to show that the votes they ignored occurred in exactly the same distributions as the other voting methods.

    And, since there's potentially a cost with voting, I have no idea if that even further mires things in.

    I think they really do need to be able to explain this, and demonstrate that it didn't affect any outcomes. And if you've got several million people watching and voting, if they suddenly find out their voting is being ignored, will they keep watching?

  • Re:News for nerds (Score:4, Informative)

    by vux984 (928602) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @03:37PM (#43678467)

    Well, admittedly, I don't care about the reality shows.

    "admittedly" you don't care? I'd not just admit it, I'd proudly proclaim that they are worthless trash and a complete waste of time that just leaves you dumber for watching them. :)

    But since there are laws about how you have to handle contests and the like...

    If they were legitimate contests they might actually be more watchable. But if you read the fine print...

    Half the time there's stuff that often amounts to the equivalent of "The producers reserve the right to override viewer votes whenever they want, because they're more interested in finding conflict and drama than talent."

    Reality shows are a farce.

    Half the time there's stuff about scenes being "re-enacted" based on something actually happened.

    Participant release forms often include terms to consent to having personal, embarrassing, information disclosed. That information may be factual or fictionalized. ... ie; if the producers want to give you an embarrassing and untrue "backstory" about you, they can and will.

    There was a recent incident where an Obama speech pre-empted a few reality shows so there was a disclaimer that "although the show was not broadcast in its entirety in some markets, it has not affected the result."

    Yeah. That's credible. A whole state missed 20 minutes of the show; but that didn't affect anything.

    I presume that's because voters don't really matter anyway and we just pull numbers out of our ass anyway.

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