Back to top

Image: Bigstock

YouTube Crushes TV Debate Viewership

Read MoreHide Full Article

People have been talking about the potential for online streaming to dismantle the television industry for years now, but the latest viewership data from Sunday’s presidential debate indicates that this change could be coming sooner than we may have expected.

According to a new report from Wired, debate content accumulated a total of 124 million views on Alphabet Inc.’s (GOOGL - Free Report) YouTube video platform. In comparison, the debate saw about 63 million television viewers.

For whatever reason, viewers are becoming more and more interested in consuming content like the presidential debates in the formats that YouTube offers. Wired points out that the average viewer watched YouTube’s debate livestream for 25 minutes, and it should be noted that YouTube watchers can easily consume short clips and highlights too.

Altogether, viewers watched a total of 2.5 million hours of YouTube’s livestream, Wired reports. On top of this, 3.2 million people tuned into Twitter’s livestream, while Facebook’s broadcast garnered about 7.4 million views.

In many ways, the increased online viewership makes a ton of sense. Speaking personally, I tuned into the debate on PBS, but I had my phone out almost the entire time. Interacting with both friends and strangers on Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit adds another layer of immersion to the viewing experience; it doesn’t seem like much of a leap to start going to these sources to actually stream the debate too.

Of course, YouTube’s total figures will also include international viewers, which skews the data a bit, but the overall point remains true: consumers no longer have to turn on their TVs to keep up with live events like the presidential debates.

You are invited to download the full, up-to-the-minute list of 220 Zacks Rank #1 "Strong Buys" free of charge. Many of these companies are almost unheard of by the general public and just starting to get noticed by Wall Street. They have been pinpointed by the Zacks system that nearly triped the market from 1988 through 2015 with a stellar average gain of +26% per year. See these high-potential stocks free >>

See More Zacks Research for These Tickers

Normally $25 each - click below to receive one report FREE:

Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL) - free report >>