Mario Survives as Idol IM 'Skin'

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Idol worshipers can now gather via a new instant-messenger service, and they can still get a Mario Vasquez IM skin (see below), at least at press time.

American Idol distributor FremantleMedia has launched American Idol Instant Messenger, partnering with MECA Communications. It will be a first for both companies.

The Idol branded IM products available on fans' computers will include access to unseen footage, exclusive promotions and access to Idol-branded skins (transparent images that serve as a backgrounds for the text being messaged).

There are skins for all of the top 24 finishers individually, or a group shot of the 12 finalists.

According to a MECA spokeswoman, there is even a skin still available of Mario Vasquez, the fan fave who exited the show under still-unexplained circumstances (a number of contestants have exited early due to personal troubles [Vasquez's explanation] or unearthed skeletons in their closets).

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