With political events constantly breaking Twitter streaming records, the platform may end up expanding its political coverage as a result.
Twitter may be busy ramping up live video by striking content deals with media companies, but politics is the topic that currently rules the roost on the platform.
Therefore, it’s fitting that the individual who has given Twitter a new lease of life is now at the center of its biggest ever live-stream. We’re referring to President Donald Trump — the inauguration of the 45th president of the United States live-streamed to Twitter courtesy of PBS NewsHour amassed a total of 6.824 million unique views, reports Variety. Overall, that figure is slightly more than BuzzFeed’s Election Night coverage, which attracted 6.8 million views.
According to the Twitter Government account, the broadcast peaked at 377,000 concurrent viewers at 12:15 p.m. ET as Trump took the oath of office — again higher than BuzzFeed’s 244,00 concurrent viewers — including both logged in users and nonusers.
Whereas the total views figure seems impressive at first, it’s important to note that unlike television (which counts average views on a per-minute basis), social platform’s tally a unique view as someone who has watched a broadcast for three seconds or more. This time around, Twitter did not release per-minute viewership numbers. Seeing as Trump’s inauguration coverage spanned six hours in total, it is difficult to say how engaged users were with the stream without an average view count. In comparison, Nielsen claims Trump’s inauguration was watched by 30.6 million total viewers across 12 networks.
Twitter also had its fair share of competition, with both YouTube and Facebook broadcasting the event in conjunction with their media partners.
One of the biggest aspects of the Twitter live video experience for active users of the service is the ability to tweet while watching the action. To this end, the event certainly created a spike in engagement, with Twitter revealing that 12 million tweets were sent relating to the inauguration, with a peak of 58,000 tweets per minute at 12:02 p.m. Comparatively, election day 2016 saw 75 million tweets shared over the span of 24 hours. The lead-up to the election outcome had also seen Twitter broadcast both the GOP and Democratic conventions, and all of the debates live in partnership with a number of media companies.