harming wheelchair-bound Zach Anner was the easy frontrunner in Oprah Winfrey's "Your OWN Show" contest — a web-based vote-off designed to find "the next big TV star" — until last Tuesday, when a sudden surge in votes for fellow contestant Phyllis Tucker-Wicks temporarily pushed him out first place. Anner fans — which include musician John Mayer and the shady internet provocateurs at 4chan — immediately cried foul, with some web-savvy bloggers offering purported evidence that someone at OWN rigged the vote. Is there any reason to believe them? Something was undeniably weird with the voting, says Amanda Fox in Helium. And while it's too soon to "make accusations that this all happened because Oprah demanded it," that's "still possible." Er, not really, says Julie Ryan Evans at The Stir. The idea that Oprah "hate[s] the handicapped" is pretty absurd. Sounds "like a technical glitch to me... or some good viral PR by Dr. Phyllis." See Zach Anner's video below:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Who are the real gay marriage bigots?
- Why is American internet so slow?
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- What the collapse of the Ming Dynasty can tell us about American decline
- Religious liberty should be a liberal value, too
- Watch The Daily Show mock Fox News' confused man-crush on Vladimir Putin
- Don't worry: World War III will almost certainly never happen
- The new bride who had a horrifying allergic reaction to her husband's sperm
- 22 TV shows to watch in 2014
5 surprising facts about left-handed people
Subscribe to the Week