Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 30 August 2014

Apology after X Factor story error

Amelia Lily has returned to the show

A TV channel has apologised after articles apparently announcing the results of an X Factor phone vote appeared online before the poll closed.

Viewers saw Amelia Lily, 17, return to the programme after she was declared the winner of a vote to replace axed Frankie Cocozza with one of four former contestants.

But a story about her win was published on the website of STV, which broadcasts ITV shows in Scotland, an hour before phone lines closed, prompting fans to accuse the programme of vote-fixing.

The channel put the blunder down to a "technical hitch", and said pre-written pieces about all four contestants had gone live on the website.

STV said in a statement: "The STV web team prepared stories regarding each contestant in anticipation of the result and due to a technical hitch, all four stories went live on our website.

"We would stress that this was purely a technical hitch and for this we apologise."

Amelia, Jonjo Kerr, 2 Shoes and James Michael were all in with a chance of returning to the competition after Cocozza, 18, left after boasting about drugs.

Baffled fans took to Twitter to express their annoyance after seeing the announcement about Amelia on the website.

Jade Blackburn wrote: "Apparently Amelia is already the winner of tonight's vote but I wanted 2 Shoes back!"

Darren Ruback tweeted: "Not sure how the result has been leaked by STV when ITV are still asking you to call. Fix!"

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