Dutch music video channel under investigation for SMS scam

Marco Borsato

A member of the Dutch parliament has asked police there to launch an investigation into an awards show that aired on TMF, a music video channel in the Netherlands owned by MTV Networks. Apparently the people producing the TMF Awards thought it'd be totally cool to ask viewers to vote by text message for their pick for Artist of the Decade while neglecting to mention that they'd already selected the winner before the show even aired. Cheapening the entire notion of picking TV show winners by phone is bad enough (we feel so guilty for having voted for American Idol this week), but the police are getting involved because TMF was actually making money off all this, since each SMS vote cost viewers 70 euro cents a pop. They probably would have gotten away with it, too, but they sent out a press release naming the winner before the broadcast even aired and one news agency accidentally broke the embargo and reported the name of the winner early. Busted!

P.S. - Incidentally, the winner was singer Marco Borsato, pictured above. Apparently it's a Dutch thing.

[Via textually.org]