Oprah may have startled a beast.
On May 14th, auditions opened for a contest to get your own show on The Oprah Winfrey Network. Zach Anner, a young man with cerebral palsy (which he believes is "the sexiest of the palsies"), uploaded his own humorous audition tape and it took off:
John Mayer summoned the Internet "rally machine" after seeing the video on the meme-spreading blog The Daily What (which we've covered here and here) and the rabble-rousers (who probably don't follow Mayer's blog) at 4chan's /b/ imageboard launched a campaign to vote the video up.
But now there are allegations of vote-rigging, as my colleague John Hudson reports:
For the last week, Anner was blowing away the competition. Then Tuesday came and another contestant, Doctor Phyllis, soared ahead. But many allege that the [Winfrey] network artificially increased Phyllis's votes, which has led to accusations of discrimination. Is there reason to believe the contest was rigged?
Anonymous--the ragtag group of individuals closely tied to places like 4chan--even started a counter-campaign called Operation SyPhyllis to swing votes back in Anner's favor. Who will win the contest: Anner or Dr. Phyllis? That may be less important than whether the Internet can beat the Queen of Media.