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Adam and Kris, Season 8

Kris Allen, announced as winner of Season 8

In May 2009, following allegations in the media of an American Idol texting scandal dubbed "Textgate," one of American Idol's corporate sponsors, AT&T, admitted providing free mobile phones and texting services for fans of Kris Allen (who won the competition) at parties organized on the night of the program's final episode.

Company representatives also provided Allen's supporters with lessons in how to send "power texts" which send ten or more votes with the touch of a single button. Bobby Kierna (one of the 2,000 guests who attended just one of the events) told reporters that she had voted for Allen 10,840 times.

AT&T denied attempting to "fix" the contest and apologized, saying that employees had been "caught up in their enthusiasm" and promised that they will in future "celebrate the competition, not individual contestants".

While speculations were rife over the reasons for Allen's win over Adam Lambert, in a statement, Fox said that an independent monitor was employed to oversee the voting process to ensure the competition results were "fair, accurate and verified."

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