(Sirius XM-News Corp. article on the prospects of Howard Stern joining American Idol updated with news and statements from the Parents Television Council)

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- If Sirius XM ( SIRI - Get Report) truly cannot afford to keep Howard Stern, could the satellite radio company's loss end up being a windfall for News Corp ( NWSA - Get Report)?

The New York Post recently reported that executives at News Corp's show American Idol are enthusiastic about the prospect of having Stern replace Simon Cowell as a judge on the show. The British producer will be departing from the show at the end of the season to launch the U.S. version of British singing competition The X Factor on Fox.

"There's not a better job on the planet than judging that f*ing karaoke contest," Stern reportedly told his satellite radio listeners. "It might be possible, we'll see."

Stern's appeal to these executives lies in their perception that the "shock jock" could be as ruthless, if not more opinionated than Cowell -- a possible asset in terms of entertainment value. People magazine reports that Idol executives may also be interested in the former head of Sony's Sony Music Entertainment and Mariah Carey's ex-husband, Tommy Mottola as a possible judge.

While some speculate that Stern could end up working for both Sirius XM and Fox -- much like American Idol host Ryan Seacrest, who is currently managing a career in radio and TV -- the primary question is still whether Sirius XM, whose stock is currently worth less than a dollar, can even afford to keep Stern at his current $100 million a year salary.

Daily Finance recently reported that Sirius XM's chief Mel Karmazin recently said at a breakfast at the Paley Center for Media in New York that "I would certainly like Stern to stay with us when his contract is up at the end of the year... I'm optimistic we'll be able to continue with Howard. We'll see what happens."

According to the Daily Finance, Karmazin also said "I think it's great to be in content today... in this world of fragmentation, great content prevails. Howard Stern is great content. My sense is Howard would be sought after by anyone. Why wouldn't you?"

Of course, that is all well and good; Clear Channel Communications execs, however, are reportedly quite interested in getting Stern to sign on with them -- and are willing to pay him good money to do so. But there are those who think that Stern might suffocate in the confines of terrestrial radio under FCC restrictions.

So, let's just say, for the sake of argument, that negotiations with Stern and Sirius XM didn't work out after all -- and neither did those with Clear Channel. And let's also imagine that Stern found a new home at American Idol. How would that all work out?

It's worth noting that the Parents Television Council (PTC), for one, thinks that's a terrible idea. In fact, on Wednesday, the PTC issued a press release calling on Fox to "dispel the rumor that Howard Stern is being considered to take over Simon Cowell's seat." It said adding Stern would "spell immediate death for one of the best franchises in American family entertainment."

To drive home its message, the PTC describes sexually explicit remarks Stern made about former American Idol winner Fantasia. The group says this is an example of what Stern could bring to the table as an Idol judge.

So, would Stern's raw edge scare off families, especially those with young children? Or could Stern be one of the few personalities capable of giving Cowell and The X Factor a run for their money, and thereby protecting Idol from a cannibalizing effect from the latter's success?

To answer these questions, we turn to you, the readers of TheStreet. Do you think Stern as a judge on American Idol would be a good fit for Fox -- and News Corp shareholders? Take the poll below to learn what your fellow investors have to say.

Do you think hiring Howard Stern as a judge on "American Idol" would be good for Fox and News Corp. shareholders?

Yes -- Stern would be a windfall for American Idol and Fox and News Corp.
No -- Stern would alienate Idol's core audiences and be a big mistake.

-- Reported by Andrea Tse in New York


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