Simon Cowell, American Idol Gives Back 2008
American Idol powers-that-be have decided to shelve the "Idol Gives Back" charity-centered episode this season because of the ongoing economic crisis and recession.
Industry insiders say that Idol officials didn't want to ask people to donate money when the economy in such dire straights and with unemployment rates continuing to rise, reports New York Post.
"Idol Gives Back" has been a highly publicized and successful event on the show for the last two years, drawing celebrity performers including Kelly Clarkson, Brad Pitt, Mariah Carey, Miley Cyrus and Barack Obama. The fundraising shows, which asked viewers of the show to call in and donate money, raised over $130 million in seasons 6 and 7 which has gone to various charitable causes in the U.S. and in Africa.
No word on whether "Idol Gives Back" will return after this upcoming season, which kicks off Jan. 13 (8 pm/ET) on Fox. A spokesperson for Idol has no comment on the Post's story.
Do you think Idol is doing the right thing by subtracting the giving?