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'American Idol' votes routed to Washington pizzeria

ReutersAmericanIdol.jpg

Feb. 20, 2014: Finalists (from L-R standing) Jessica Meuse, Dexter Roberts, Jena Irene, MK Nobilette, Alex Preston, Emily Piriz, Ben Briley, Kristen O'Connor, (from L-R kneeling) Caleb Johnson, Majesty Rose, Sam Woolf, Malaya Watson and C.J. Harris pose at the party for the finalists of "American Idol XIII" in West Hollywood, California.Reuters

Callers looking to vote for their favorite contestant on "American Idol" last Wednesday were routed to Gordy's Pizza and Pasta in Washington state, causing the eatery to get bombarded with calls.

The Peninsula Daily News reports that it's not clear why the calls were routed to Gordy's, Port Angeles, Wash., for two hours Wednesday night. The number the show advertised for voters -- 855-443-6411 -- is not similar to the number the pizzeria has had for the past 50 years.

The restaurant's owner, Randy Sexton, says his staff was inundated with calls, and that it was possibly a mistake that was made when the calls were routed through AT&T. He says he hopes the snafu gets fixed before next Wednesday's episode.

This is not the first phone controversy for the Fox hit show.  

According to the Federal Trade Commission, three Utah-based companies bought dozens of phone numbers very similar to the toll-free numbers that "Idol" fans call to place their votes. Viewers who misdialed and got one of the numbers were directed to dial a 900-number to place their vote. A message on the 900-number then gave the correct toll-free number to call.  The FTC said about 25,000 consumers were charged up to $3 per call during the 2002 and 2003 seasons.

In season four, three of the contestants had their numbers mixed up, with the wrong numbers appearing on the screen. This resulted in millions of votes being voided. 

During season eight, the expected phone number for contestant Alexis Grace reached an adult entertainment company. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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