Update: 23rd Sep, 2007 23:14hrs ==> Prashant Tamang is actually declared the Indian Idol.
Amit Paul wins Indian Idol 3!! Yeah, so all fans start dancing!!... After some hard dancing, a few tired individuals come to me and ask, the results aren't out yet, so why r we dancing??... how do you know Amit wins??.. and a few readers ask, what's Indian Idol doing at a Tech Blog!!??
For those who don't know what's the Indian Idol ==> Indian Idol is a remake of American Idol for Indian participants and Indian audience, with a similar format and voting techniques. And the point of voting brings us to technology. Voting to Indian Idol requires you to either send SMS, Call phone numbers, Go to their website!! All of these voting techniques use technology. It's an easy and great way to connect to your audience, but not the most reliable way to get votes!! And when I say unreliable, believe me, the Indian Idol 3 voting system is a complete junk (Don't ask what I mean by junk, do some R&D to find out) !! Check Indian Idol voting site and you'll know what I mean. They supposedly charge Rs.2/- per vote, but I haven't paid a single penny till now!! Think about the SMS system. SMS is basically a technology of sending text messages and there are different ways to send it. Not just from phones, but also other ways. Indian Idol may have restricted web SMS, but then still there are numerous ways to breach the SMS system. I've personally done a few over the years, and sure that others know many more SMS hacking techniques than I do!!The entire voting procedure is so much dependent on different telecom companies and you can never be sure what's happening in those telecom offices. Why couldn't you just bribe some telecom technician and walk your way to victory?? Indian Idol 3 or for that matter Saregamapa 2007 (another singing show judged by public voting) during the last episodes becomes a competition between states/cities. The contestants receive support from politicians, corporates, social activists and from the local residents. It becomes a prestige issue for an entire state and when this happens, you know what the politicians can do with public telecom companies!! Jammed Lines, Network Congestion are some common problems with technology being used in such a voting system. So when there's a network failure in a participant's home ground, injustice happens to him!!
So what do you do to solve the problems?? Accept only one vote per week from one phone. But that would mean less revenue for the TV channels and Telecom companies. They are running a business with these shows, and very less chance that such a thing will happen. Build more secure websites for public voting. "Anything that is built can be broken", but then I expect at least a tough time for the person breaking the system. You could stop public voting and let the judges decide whose best. But then I think the essence and beauty of democracy is something special!!When winning and losing depends upon technology, it is not a very healthy thing for talent. You can easily manipulate your votes, and I know for sure it has been manipulated in the past and will be manipulated in the future. I have been voting for Amit Paul from the beginning of the contest, but you never know how technology has been bent. I'm not saying that Prashant doesn't have the fan following. May be his fans are more fanatic. But I'm saying that technology is not completely perfect like a lot of other things in life!!