I first read this when it came out in Swedish. Though not a very good prediction of real-world developments, it is an excellent prediction of cultural developments.
In English, the word “idol” still carries a heretical note, from the ban on idolatry in Leviticus (ca. 500–400 BCE) 26. The use of “idol” specifically for young singers was popularized in Japan by The Chase (1964), featuring 19-year-old Sylvie Vartan and released in Japan as 「アイドルを探せ」, a literal translation of the original French title. Under its transnational influence, Japanese idols came to be revered primarily for their ostensible personal qualities (i.e. image), not their competence. The title of Gibson’s novel is an interesting choice, half-way between the English/French spelling of the word and its Japanese transcription and transliteration, hence between the different cultures and meanings.