If Donald Trump’s inauguration had the largest audience ever to witness it, it most likely did not come from people streaming it via the President’s favorite media platform, Twitter.
According to an analysis of user traffic data to Twitter’s stream of the inauguration, it was down significantly from comparable recent events.
The analysis, conducted by Jumpshot, could not compare Trump’s inauguration to previous presidential inaugurations, because live streaming via Twitter was not available then.
But comparing it to other similar recent political events of national interest -- Election Day, and the opening days of the Republican and Democratic national conventions -- indicates the audience was down precipitously.
Overall, Twitter's live stream of the inauguration had 23% fewer viewers than its Election Day live stream, according to the analysis, which also reveals the audience composition skewed toward male viewers and Millennials.
While domestic U.S. streaming dominated slightly, Jumpshot found the share of Russian viewers doubled during the inauguration live stream, compared to U.S. Election Day streaming, although overall Russian streaming accounted for less than 1% of total viewing on Twitter.
The top four countries after the U.S. were Canada, the U.K., India and Germany.
Males accounted for more than 70% of viewership, which was consistent with other recent political live streams.
Nearly half of all viewers of the inauguration live stream were between the ages of 18 and 24, which was similar to Election Day.
Asked how the 2017 inauguration might have performed relative to Obama’s 2013 inauguration, a Jumpshot spokesperson said, “Unfortunately, we can’t compare the two inaugurations, since Twitter live is a relatively new feature on the platform.
“The election and inauguration live streams were only a few months apart, so in theory, they would rake in similar numbers,” she continued, adding: “Twitter likely would have hoped for growth though.”
As would the Trump Administration, which appeared to be obsessed with countering claims over the weekend that its inauguration audience was down versus other previous presidential inaugurations.
While the in-person attendance was subject to debate, photographic images and mass transit estimates indicated that Trump’s inauguration audience was down significantly. In terms of U.S. TV viewing, Trump’s inauguration ranked fifth, according to Nielsen.
It might seem that all these stories about crowd size and viewing numbers are just another way for the media to delegitimize the Trump presidency. If he doesn't measure up to Obama, then he cannot be a "real" President. I imagine that most readers of this website are sympathetic to that subtext. But is the underlying rationale for such coverage not a little bothersome, if not war-like?
@ Douglas Ferguson: I can only speak for this media outlet, but I can assure you MediaPost is only covering the audience estimates, because it is both newsworthy and relevant to our readers. It is a core part of what we cover. As far as other media go, I think it has something to do with the fact that President Trump called them out on their coverage during a briefing with the CIA and asked his press secretary to warn them about their coverage too. I think that elevated the story to broader interest than it otherwise might have had. Most of the national media did not cover the audience size of his inauguration until after that happened.
I agree that Trump "hit back" first. Presidents are not allowed to attack the press. I am not opposed to even-handed coverage of Trump and I enjoy this website daily. In the spirit of full coverage, here's an "alternative" look at whether Trump broke a streaming record for his inauguration. http://advanced-television.com/2017/01/23/trump-inauguration-sets-live-video-streaming-record/
Interesting stats, Douglas. I had not seen them. Thank you for posting them. I respect Akamai's data, but terrabytes don't necessarily translate into audience volume. There are other factors why they can be up -- like higher resolution bandwidth, etc. -- but I think online audience tallies should be available soon and we will report on them too. The only data we have so far is Jumpshot's data on Twitter's live streaming of the inauguration, which trended downward from other recent political events.
Totally agree Joe.
Most video now is 1080i/p which is a 1920x1080 frame size, whereas back at Obama's first inauguration (to pick a place in time) it was 720p which is a 1280x720 frame size. That is, cet. par., 1080i/p is 2.25x 720p. So the format accounts for more than a doubling of Tbps alone. When you add in the 'fatter pipes' now available the Tbps growth is far less than I expected.
But I'll give you another fact. For free. Albeit a useless fact but one that would please The Donald
Trump DEFINITELY exceeded the Tbps rate for the Kennedy, Nixon, Ford, Carter, G. Bush and Clinton inaugurations - COMBINED!