'American Idol' to Introduce Online Semi-Final Voting?

'American Idol'

We're now officially in the thick of the holiday season, but there's another annual celebration we should start preparing for: 'American Idol' season.

Though the show doesn't premiere until January, today brings the first of what will surely be many, many 'Idol'-related stories to come over the next month. According to Reality Blurred, some intrepid 'AI' sleuths have deduced how the field will be narrowed down to the finalists now that the semi-final rounds are out: online voting.

Though convenient, introducing online voting into the 'Idol' process could have some unintentionally disastrous consequences. After the jump, read why we think it could be a good idea -- and also why it could be a very bad one.

Just to be clear: This is not official news from Fox, but it is a likely (and probable) explanation for several clues floating around the internet right now. One 'Idol'-tracking website noted that the Twitter bio for an account titled "AI10 Contestants" reads "Voting begins Thursday, February 24 at ATT.com/Idol." Plus, an insider told Vote for the Worst that 40 to 50 contestants will be prominently featured during the five Hollywood episodes, with viewers voting online for the top 12 contestants. Three more finalists will be chosen via a judges' wild card.

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