First, there are additional clips of Survivor to be watched here: http://www.cbs.com/primetime/survivor/
I highly recommend for all Survivor fans to watch these additional clips. They clarify matters, outline certain alliances, have funny moments, and also have the full tribal council and what everyone says, the full final words after someone is voted out, and a "day after" segment with the person recently voted out.
Let me explain how this was NOT scripted, and why people like fifty_games should be banned from posting when they do not know the truth.
First, Russell's move had GREAT risks for himself. He was that close to having gone home himself. But he knew if he just saved himself, he'd be one of the next to go, and thus concoted a masterplan.
Here's what happened:
Russell, Parvati and Danielle were in an alliance of 3. Rob, Tyson, Sandra and Courtney were in an alliance of 4.
Jerri and Coach were "swing" votes, but Coach idolized Rob and wouldn't vote against him. More importantly, Coach was scared of Parvati and wanted her gone (even in the 1st episode where they got rid of Randy).
The 6 of them decided to split their votes in order to force a 3-way tie (with Russell's 3 voting for Tyson). Then the idol would be played by one, and the other (Russell or Parvati) would be gone after the 2nd vote (it would be 5 votes against 1 at this point).
Coach, Jerri and Courtney were to vote Parvati.
Rob, Tyson and Sandra were to vote Russell.
NO ONE thought Russell would actually give his Immunity Idol to Parvati, but even that's beside the point. Here's where the confusion for some lies and I'll now clarify it.
Tyson, being the strategist he is, realized that if Parvati thought she was going home, instead of forcing a 3-way tie, she would flop her vote to Russell, ensuring he goes home. Furthermore, Danielle would join Parvati, thus placing 5 total votes on Russell, either sending him home, or forcing him to play his Idol.
Tyson wanted to KEEP Russell's Idol because he had a sort-of alliance/good-will with Russell. He figured if he could save Russell, he'd be able to use the Idol with Russell in the future. They had some conversations that we aren't privy to, but ultimately I gather Tyson told Russell he needs to swap from him (Tyson) to Parvati, to make it a 4-3-2 vote (4 Parvati, 3 Russell, 2 Tyson), thus keeping his Idol. BUT, if the 2 Tyson votes (from Parvati and Danielle) got switched to Russell, which, and I quote, Tyson said "would be the wise move" from those girls wanting self-preservation (because they weren't totally sure Rob's group wouldn't throw them off and vote Danielle cause of the Idol [sort of like Edguardo from Fiji over Mookie and Alex]), well then Russell would have 5 votes, and Parvati 4. IF Russell played his Idol, Parvati would go home, naturally. But Tyson wanted the Idol safe. So he figured HE could take control of the game. 1) Boot Parvati by switching his vote, thus making it 5 Parvati, 4 Russell; 2) Gain Russell's loyalty and keep his Idol; 3) Still stay loyal to his alliance, while taking some control.
All-in-all a good idea by Tyson, but just WAY too early in the game, considering his strong position. He should've stuck with the 3-3-3 plan, but then the Idol would be lost... It was a powerplay in his own right. But turned out to be premature greed. At least, as he said, he went out on his own terms.
Furthermore, Tyson said that NO ONE, not his alliance, nor the producers, nor the cameramen, had ANY idea he was switching his vote to Parvati. He didn't even decide to do it until Tribal Council. THAT'S what makes Russell's move SO dangerous. He was that close to having been out of the game. Instead, it goes down as possibly the greatest move in Survivor history, turning the 6-person alliance vs. the 3-person alliance into chaos. Tyson, as later revealed, was clearly the glue that kept Rob and Coach, and that alliance, together. With him gone, the opportunity to turn Coach and Jerri to Russell's team's side now presents itself. ABSOLUTE BRILLIANCE! This is why Russell is one of the best game players (though if he wants Jury votes he's got to wisen up).
So in the end, Tyson switched his vote, but, more importantly, Parvati and Danielle stayed loyal to Russell, thus ensuring their long stay in this game. Had just one of them gone back on Russell (like Parvati to save herself), Russell would've been gone, the Idol would've been gone, and she'd be the next to go. We now see the POWER of keeping your word and alliances, something Russell Hantz CLEARLY understands. Now do you understand, zero_game?
Just takes some intelligence to figure out what's going on in this game.