August 10, 2005 11:04 PM by Joe Blackmon
On Thursday, August 11 at some time between 8 and 9 P.M. Eastern Time, CBS will announce the winner of the Big Brother 6 America’s Choice poll. And if Kaysar Ridha doesn’t walk back into the house, it will become one of the biggest controversies in reality TV history.
Controversy over the voting rules for the Big Brother 6 America’s Choice poll is currently a heated topic of debate on the Internet, and CBS isn’t talking. On the Thursday, August 4, 2005 episode of Big Brother 6, Julie Chen announced that viewers would be able to vote either via text voting or via the Internet for one previously evicted houseguest to re-enter the Big Brother 6 house.
What Julie Chen failed to mention is if viewers were allowed to vote more than once. With no restrictions voiced by Julie, many viewers have been going under the assumption that multiple voting is allowed. A press release from CBS only notes that “other restrictions on voting may apply.”
Viewers are charged 49 cents per text vote. Rumors have circulated that family and friends of the contestants are spending massive amounts of money casting multiple text votes. Internet voting is free on the CBS.com website, which has inspired some fans to create macro programs that allow a single individual to repeatedly vote for one contestant.
Reality TV Magazine contacted a representative from CBS to get a clarification on the voting rules, but CBS’s response was to refer us back to the press release. Reality TV Magazine followed up with an inquiry to CBS stating that since money was involved in the text voting that many fans wanted to know exactly what other restrictions may apply means. CBS did not respond to inquiries asking for clarification. Even though CBS couldn’t provide a clarification of the voting rules, they did issue a press release pointing out that Big Brother 6 voting is helping to create record traffic for the CBS.com website. RealityBlurred.com offers up one theory based on the record traffic press release by pointing out that “Perhaps this explains the mixed messages about multiple votes; more voting equals more traffic.”
Popular opinion seems to be pointing toward a Kaysar victory. Kaysar has received the endorsement of various websites such as TVSquad.com and TVGasm.com. Kaysar has been a fan favorite on message boards at Big Brother fan sites Reality BBQ and Joker’s Updates. Comments from Reality TV Magazine readers have also heavily favored Kaysar returning to the house.
However, Eric Littmann has not been without his fans, and reality TV has become known for surprising outcomes that seem to defy popular opinion on the Internet. At the time of this article, a Reality TV Magazine poll on “Which Big Brother houseguest will viewers vote back into the house?” shows a heated contest between Kaysar and Eric. While Kaysar has been in the lead for the majority of the time the poll has been running, Eric has occasionally jumped into the lead. With over 430,000 votes currently cast in the Reality TV Magazine readers poll, less than 1% separates the vote between Eric and Kaysar. And just for clarification, Reality TV Magazine has allowed multiple voting in the poll, which should help the poll to mirror the multiple voting that is occuring in the official CBS.com poll.