Trump/Clinton Debate Breaks Records for Live Streaming and Tweeting

Hillary Clinton

The first presidential debate of the 2016 US Election took place on Monday, and as well as attracting record TV audiences – an estimated 84m viewers, according to Nielsen – it proved a huge success online.

The live stream of the debate on YouTube approached 2m live concurrent viewers at peak, an audience 14 times bigger than the 2014 debate – making it the largest political live stream of all time on YouTube and one of the biggest live streams the video site has ever seen.

Views on other debate-related videos on YouTube were over 88m, and CBSN, the online-only live video news service from CBS, broke its own daily records with 1.4m unique viewers on the day of the debate.


On Twitter, meanwhile, there were 17.1m interactions around the debate, from 2.7m within the US alone, also according to Nielsen. That figure is corroborated by Twitter, which told CNN it was the most tweeted debate ever, beating the 10.3m tweets regarding the first 2012 debate.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Donald Trump attracted the most attention on social media, with 62 per cent of the Twitter conversations and 79 per cent on Facebook – though, unsurprisingly, not all of that attention was positive for the candidate.