X-Factor is hugely popular in the UK, and will be coming to the uS this autumn. But it is based on an old model - the tv premium line phone in vote.
Things have move on: with Glee we have seen the song of the week being released and hitting the charts in the week it is broadcast. And when I watch X Factor, I often find myself thinking: if that was a record, i would go out and buy it.
So why not do things differently.
Each week the singer, or group, or whoever, records a song. They might also sing it live on a weekly entertainment show - but the important thing is the recording. After the weekly show goes out, the recordings are put on sale: mp3s on iTunes and Amazon - no need to distribute them to record shops (record shops are so last century too...). The winner is announced the next week - based on one thing and one thing only - highest sales.
What you get is an artist who has managed not just to consistantly win phone votes, but to consistently sell to people who actually buy music.
Which is so much better than the bland forgettable winners of the show who are often forgotten before they get around to releasing their first album.