Twitter: It made the VMAs worth watching

I used to "live blog" award shows. Oh, those were the good old days before micro-blogging was invented... I have to say that for all the people that STILL proclaim that they "Don't get Twitter," I respond with "I don't get how you can sit down and watch an award show for 3+ hours without it".

Over here on the left coast (if you are lucky enough to have ATT U-verse) we had to wait until 9PM to see the hot mess that was the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards. But that didn't mean we didn't get to share in the controversy and "WTF's?" with the rest of the country. The Twittersphere was ablaze with comments on Lady Gaga in drag, Niki Manaj's stuffed animal chained to her leg, Katy Perry's Cheesehead hat and all the questions about "who the girl singing in the chair" was.

In fact, according to this article by Mashable, the single most Tweeted moment EVER to this point was when the lovely Beyonce flashed her belly pooch to the world, confirmed the much speculated rumor that the singer is indeed with child. 

According to Twitter’s Global PR team, Beyonce’s baby reveal at 10:35pm ET gave Twitter a record bump of 8,868 tweets per second. That means that Beyonce’s VMA moment received more mentions per-second than the Women’s World Cup, Japan’s New Year or Osama bin Laden’s death.

The baby bump heard 'round the worldA pregnant Beyonce got more tweets than the death of public enemy #1. 

Insanity. But? OHMYGOD, how sweet was that?! #SQUEE. 

There has been lots of controversy about the VMAs and the fact that MTV even still hosts them considering they no longer actually play music videos. (You can check out Stef's coverage on Adam Levine's VMA tweet here, and my counterpoint here.) But you must admit it's always good for laugh. The silly musicians trying harder and harder to outdo each other in ridiculousness (love the sugical mask trend this year) but watching with 5k friends makes it that much better.


Additional stats include:

  • Best VMA day ever on with 1.9m visitors on Sunday August 28, 2011.
  • More than 1.2m live streams were served across and on iOS and Android.
  • Social media traffic was up 76% from 2010. Twitter referral traffic to was at its highest level ever.

I started thinking about it: when you open your Internet browser, or check your iPhone/Droid/Blackberry, where do you go first, Twitter or Facebook? I threw the question out to my Tweeps and the majority of them said Twitter. So now the next question really is why? Do we love the quick checks? Do you want to see what people in your stream are up to? Or is it all about you and your latest 140 character thought?

Also, did you tweet or follow along with the VMAs last night? If so, who was your favorite person to see updates from?