Scores of angry North East Pop Idol fans claim the show was rigged after they failed to cast their votes for Tyneside hopeful Aaron Bailey.
The 26-year-old train driver, of Eastbourne Avenue, Walkerdene, made it to the final 10 in the competition, which eliminates one contestant each week.
The public make that decision, voting by phone for their favourite star, but many of Aaron's North East fans say the lines were constantly engaged and the website did not work.
Lisa Corbett, 34, of Milton Place, Shieldfield, Newcastle,has followed Aaron's success throughout the ITV programme and has voted for him every week.
She said: "The lines were engaged all night and I couldn't get through. Last week there wasn't a problem and I was able to vote as many times as I wanted.
"A lot of my friends have said the same thing and there've been people ringing up the local radio station to say they couldn't get through either.
"You'd think that if the number for Aaron was engaged all night then he should have got loads of votes, but now he's been voted off.
"There must have been thousands of people trying to get through and this has blown his chances."
It is not the first time Pop Idol has been accused of scuppering Aaron's chances.
Last week, hundreds complained that when they phoned the number to vote for Aaron their vote instead went to Darlington's Zoe Birkett.
On Saturday, Aaron sang the Gene Pitney classic 24 Hours From Tulsa but was "gutted" to learn he had notched up the least phone votes.
Lesley Marr, 43, of Benton Park Road, Benton, said: "I feel completely cheated. The lad must think nobody was voting for him, when in reality people just couldn't get through. It was engaged for the entire duration of the votes, so surely that must mean he had the most votes. The whole thing stinks and I know at least 50 other people who were tying to get through as well."
Mark Pearson, 23, of Fairways Avenue, Four Lane Ends, said: "I've been voting for Aaron for weeks and have never had any problem before.
"The only thing I can think is that he didn't have the same number of lines as everyone else."
A spokeswoman for Pop Idol said: "We monitor the lines very closely all night to check if there's a problem, and absolutely nothing was flagged up to us."
Pearson Television, which produces the show, says it has been inundated with calls and will be investigating.