MTV’s Video Music Awards: The Most Social TV Event of All Time?

LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 06: (L-R) Singers Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Zayn Malik and Louis Tomlinson of One Direction perform onstage during the 2012 MTV Video Music Awards at Staples Center on September 6, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images)

NEW YORK ( – The 2012 Video Music Awards was the most social TV event of all-time. Or was it second?

According to social analytics company Trendrr, MTV’s annual celebration of the most popular music videos of the year was the biggest tentpole event so far in 2012, which also makes it the biggest of all-time, excluding political events.

The VMAs notched 19,175,032 mentions across Twitter, Facebook, GetGlue and Viggle, besting the second-biggest event ever, this year’s Super Bowl, by almost 2 million mentions. The 2012 Grammys rank third.

According to Bluefin Labs, another social analytics company, the show was the second biggest social TV event ever, trailing this year’s Grammys. The VMAs registered 12.8 million social media comments, while the Grammys notched 13 million.

These differing reports demonstrate the inexactitude of social analytics, as every company has its own measurement system.

Still, which ever way you slice it, those numbers are huge (unlike the ratings) – and driven by women. According to Trendrr, 71 percent of social interactions around the awards show came from women.

In keeping with the female bent of the tweetage, it was an R&B crooner and a spunky boy band who drove the conversation.

By Bluefin’s measurements, activity spiked during Frank Ocean’s performance of “Thinkin ‘Bout You,” a stripped-down spectacle compared to the rest of the bombast, as well as when British pop group One Direction won “Best New Artist.”

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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.


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