This is more than just American Idol. It’s about the emergence of the new media and its relationship to the mainstream media. When will YouTube become a more influential medium than Fox? Are we now approaching that point?

What does Andrew Garcia, a musician and singer from Moreno Valley have to do with this? Andrew Garcia may soon become an icon for those struggling musicians and artists who have been optimistic about getting their big break using the Internet as their stage. You have to understand that Andrew Garcia and his closely knit and highly talented circle of friends have been entertaining people on YouTube long before Andrew Garcia made his first appearance on American Idol. If he becomes a star, it will be difficult to say whether it was the Internet or the TV that put him on the world’s stage.

He has had millions of views on his YouTube videos. After Andrew Garcia made his appearance on American Idol Hollywood, his videos were suddenly removed from his account only to reappear on YouTube by others who have re-uploaded his videos.

Was it American Idol who asked him to take it down? Why would a guy with millions of views and hundreds of comments chose to take his videos offline? Is it possible that American Idol wanted to take full credit for his future success by negating the fact that he had already earned a following online? That might give the message that maybe YouTube is more powerful than Fox. Rupert Murdoch does not approve of that. Remember what happened when Ron Paul was winning in Fox’s text message polls?

Andrew Garcia does not care about the medium. What Andrew Garcia cares about his his music. He does what he loves to do. He has pursued his dreams. He has not chased the money. And what has been the outcome so far? It seems as if the money will soon be following him. When Andrew, girlfriend Christine Concepcion and friend AJ Raphael decided to raise funds for people in the Philippines after Typhoon Ondoy by giving a live performance via uStream, #healphilippines became a trending topic on Twitter. This was all put together spontaneously and $1500+ was donated within a few hours. This does not match the amount raised by celebrities who put on a telethon for those suffering after the Haiti earthquake, but it was also done with no budget.

Now it comes down to American Idol. Who will America choose? We will soon see if the Andrew Garcia’s online popularity will translate to offline votes. Another question soon to be answered is the role of the individualistic approach of the Internet combined with the wide reach of the television and mainstream media will propel a person to success.