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Simon Cowell denies obscene ''Idol'' gesture

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Simon Cowell
Simon Cowell: Dan Herrick-KPA/KEYSTONE Pictures/Newscom

Is Simon Cowell’s middle finger the new Janet Jackson’s nipple? Probably not, but a few viewers of Tuesday night’s ”American Idol” complained to the FCC after they noticed Cowell holding his middle finger to the side of his face during a debate with Paula Abdul, according to Reuters. Cowell, who had quickly switched to his index finger, denied any meaning to the outstretched digit.

”I certainly would never make a gesture like that towards Paula or on national television,” he said in a statement. ”Sometimes a different finger. Sometimes two at the same time, or God help me, even the whole hand. I never thought about it until now.” Fox, meanwhile, told Reuters that its censors agreed with Cowell, seeing nothing obscene about his finger placement ? they left the moment intact when the show aired on the West Coast. But don’t be surprised if you see Simon in mittens next week.