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Blunt talk on TV: Will Simon Cowell and his frank style be missed after his exit from American Idol?

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The Wednesday night tribute to departing Idol judge Simon Cowell, even as Lee DeWyze beat out Crystal Bowersox, was a reminder of his impact on American TV.

What do you think of such blunt criticism on contest shows?

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Does brutal honesty help contestants?

Or does a softer touch work better?