Thursday, April 26

What did American Idol really give back?

Admit it. There were a lot of skeptics who didn't believe American Idol's two day charity fundraiser was anything more than a well oiled publicity campaign.

I just read a Reuters story written by Jill Serjeant and it sounds like there might be an interesting story developing. Serjeant writes that some viewers expressed concern about silence from corporate sponsors since making earlier pledges that they would match each vote cast by viewers with donations.

A record 70 million votes were cast by text or telephone.

Fox said the event had already raised $60 million in corporate and viewer donations, and more money was coming in. An updated total will be announced when "American Idol" returns to its regular format next week.
When asked for comment:
Sponsors Coca-Cola and Ford declined on Thursday to say how much they had donated, citing business confidentiality. Ford said its contribution was tied to Internet downloads of its "Idol" music videos. AT&T could not be reached for comment.
Even if the corporate sponsors bail from their original pledges, the success of the medium cannot be underestimated.

The ONE Campaign to Make Poverty History, a coalition of dozens of nonprofits like Oxfam and Save the Children, said more than 70,000 Americans joined the campaign after the show, which included an appeal by Irish rock star and spokesman Bono.
I was kind of hoping that Where Most Needed would have already dug into the 990s of the Charity Projects Entertainment Fund (CPEF).

CPEF was set up to administer the funds disbursement to the following eight charities; Boys & Girls Club of America; Children's Health Fund; Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; Malaria No More; Nothing But Nets; Save the Children; and U.S. Fund for UNICEF.

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