CKX Dodges ‘Idol’ Bullet?

The alleged scandal of popular Fox Television show “American Idol” – as told on a rival network – promised to be the downfall of the show, and even the loss of the country’s innocence. One of the entities that stood to lose from it was Robert Sillerman’s company, CKX.

Sillerman recently purchased 19 Entertainment, which owns the “Idol” franchise. The former SFX man is preparing for a second public offering of the newly formed company, which recently purchased most things Elvis.

At least one financial adviser – the eccentric but most-often-right Motley Fool posse of stock traders – said prior to the airing of the “Primetime Live” special news report that it would be a good idea to short CKX stock.

But Motley Fool’s advice was prompted in part by speculation that the “explosive” news report would include revelations that the “American Idol” phone-in voting system was rigged. There are sponsorship tie-ins with the phone-in system, of which 19 Entertainment gets some coin. So, if voting traffic dropped, or if the scandal made “Idol” ratings dip even temporarily, so would CKX stock, the Fool believed.

Instead, the hour-long special on ABC – which is consistently trounced in the ratings by the Fox show – focused solely on an alleged peccadillo between “American Idol” judge Paula Abdul and a former contestant. The next morning, CKX stock was up almost a point.

As for the scandal, it alleged Abdul had a romantic relationship with contestant Corey Clark while he was competing. Show producers are investigating the situation, although they maintain Clark has a history of falsehoods. He was kicked off the show for not revealing an arrest.

However, some believe Clark’s story has enough merit to call for Abdul’s ouster. But is it enough to cause “American Idol” fans to turn their heads from the television and, ultimately, fulfill the Fool’s prediction? Only the next few weeks will tell.