If you still don't believe that, read this piece at the Daily Beast from the foremost journalist authority on all things "Idol," Richard Rushfield.
And yet, the story persists, as Stern fans the flames -- that's what he does, folks -- and entities that have nothing to do with "Idol" fall for it.
Why hasn't Fox shot the rumors down? Well, first off, this is great publicity: People are talking about "Idol," Cowell, and Cowell's replacement -- and getting passionate about it. For a show in its ninth season, that's incredible (and needed) interest.
But it's also a bit too soon to confirm or deny Cowell's replacement, as the search is still in its early stages -- and the network isn't going to confirm or deny anyone at this point (including much more realistic prospects, such as Guy Oseary or Tommy Mattola).
On Wednesday, the Parents Television Council -- quick to react when a network broadcasts something they object to -- took the unusual step of sending out a press release demanding answers for something that hasn't happened:
PTC Tells Fox to Clarify Rumor of Howard Stern for “American Idol” SlotHell, I want answers from Fox too. But on an entirely different subject. I'm planning on sending this release out shortly:
Stern Would Ensure the Death of the Number One Show on TV
LOS ANGELES (February 10, 2010) – The Parents Television Council™ is calling on Fox to dispel the rumor that Howard Stern is being considered to take over Simon Cowell’s seat as judge on “American Idol.”
“Given ‘American Idol’s’ extreme popularity with family audiences, I hope that Fox will put the rumors to rest and announce that it has no intention of adding to the show one of the most profane, sexually-explicit and anti-family performers in the history of the broadcast medium – either as a guest or as a judge,” said PTC President Tim Winter. “Unless Stern intends to undergo some sort of moth-to-butterfly metamorphosis -- though in his case the change would be more like rattlesnake-to-Labrador Retriever -- adding him to ‘American Idol’ would spell immediate death for one of the best franchises in American family entertainment.”
Mike Schneider Tells Fox to Clarify Whether or Not They’re Gonna Sign Conan O’Brien
Seriously, He Just Wants This Story To Be Done, Already
LOS ANGELES (February 10, 2010) – Michael Schneider™ is calling on Fox to finally just tell us whether or not they're gonna find a home for Conan O'Brien, and then do it already.
"The Late Night Wars 2.0 were fun, but we all want to get on with our lives," Schneider said. "Fox, answer the question. ANSWER THE QUESTION!"