And you thought Simon Cowell was mean: American Idol head honcho Tony Cohen wants to cut off your Internet access if you’re downloading his show. Cohen, CEO of the UK-based Idol production company FremantleMedia, told the audience of the Changing Media Summit in London today that he supports so-called “three strikes” plans to disconnect repeat infringers from the Net, according to PaidContent UK.

The three strikes approach has many proponents within the music industry, and it fits in nicely with FremantleMedia’s approach to date. The company has been pretty stingy with licensing Idol videos online, forcing sites like YouTube to remove or mute videos of Idol performances. Even Hulu, which is partially owned by the American Idol TV network FOX, has been left in the cold. Cohen apparently has other plans for the “Idol” franchise: He told his audience in London that users should pay up to watch streams of the show. Continue reading on

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