Comcast created five Youtube live streams of the NBC News Trump Town Hall across their affiliated channels to skew a direct data comparison of total viewers against a single stream used for ABC News Joe Biden Town Hall.

by meme_kat

Hollywood, CNN, and MSNBC were losing their minds yesterday and absolutely did not want dueling town halls.

Viewers might choose watching Trump over Biden. What isn’t discussed is Hollywood was also freaking out because Nielsen ratings will likely show Trump beating Biden in head-to-head ratings for the same time slot. Trump’s choice is no coincidence.

Streaming totals however could be manipulated

Comcast knew they could skew a direct comparison for Youtube and created five different live streams across NBC, CNBC, CNBC Television, and Telemundo accounts. The NBC News youtube account had two live streams. I did not observe a live stream on the MSNBC channel, but it might have existed.

Media outlets are already fraudulently claiming Biden had more Total Youtube views by not comparing total viewers from ABC’s single stream against cumulative data from Comcast’s multiple Youtube streams.

While final television viewership numbers for the meetings have yet to be announced, Biden may have attracted more viewers online than Trump.

At the end of Trump’s town hall, the NBC News YouTube channel showed 153,660 viewers were watching. ABC News’s YouTube channel showed 507,445 viewers at the end of Biden’s town hall.

Newsweek reached out to YouTube and the Biden campaign for comment.

The Newsweek article is bad journalism.

After debate:

Five Comcast affiliate live streams are listed. A 2nd NBC News live stream is counted after the sub-total. It has been running live for over 12 hours, and had over “122K watching” live viewers during the Trump Town Hall. You could add at least another 122,000 to the total for the Trump event, but I’ve only included 99,768 views captured by

Current comparison

  • ABC Biden Town Hall had 35% less total youtube views than NBC News Trump Town Hall
    ( 1 – (Biden / Trump)) = percent
    ( 1 – (2,598,593 / 3,996,374)) = 0.34976231

The youtube query below filters for “Today” and “Long (> 20 minutes)

And here is a simple query without filters

Trump Town Hall – views as of Oct 16, 2020 12:00am PST (3:00am EST) – Comcast channels

Youtube channel … Total views (UTC)
NBC News (stream 1) 1,580,795 16 Oct 2020 07:00:50 UTC
CNBC 1,299,879 16 Oct 2020 07:01:13 UTC
CNBC Television 891,139 16 Oct 2020 07:01:08 UTC
Noticias Telemundo 79,000 16 Oct 2020 07:01:12 UTC
SUB-TOTAL 3,896,606
NBC News (stream 2)* 99,768 16 Oct 2020 00:12:52 UTC
TOTAL 3,996,374

Biden Town Hall – views as of Oct 16, 2020 12:00am PST (3:00am EST) – ABC News

Youtube channel … Total views (UTC)
ABC News 2,598,593 16 Oct 2020 07:00:51 UTC
TOTAL 2,598,593

Don’t cross the streams

Biden Town Hall

Trump Town Hall

Total viewing numbers on the four links below are dedicated. The total viewing count increments and does not decrease unless someone at Google manipulates database numbers.

Fifth Comcast stream

A 2nd NBC News channel livestream link listed below existed at the time of the Trump Town Hall. It’s difficult to determine total views because the stream is still live (12+ hours) and ran before and after the town hall event. I did capture a screenshot where there were over 122,000 live viewers during the Town Hall on this stream.

What is interesting is the title of the livestream changed after the Trump Town Hall event ended and now lists a random title.

  • NBC News
    Watch Live: President Trump Town Hall With Voters | NBC News NOW <– Title during the Trump Town Hall
    122K watching <– Viewer count at approximately 9:00pm EST, 6:00pm PST

Archives of 2nd NBC News stream. Someone else caught on to Comcast’s scheme and captured a snapshot when it was at 99,768 live viewers

  • During Trump Town Hall
    Watch Live: President Trump Town Hall With Voters | NBC News NOW
  • After Town Hall
    Watch NBC News NOW Live – October 16 | NBC News NOW
  • Livestream ended
    Watch NBC News NOW Live – October 16 | NBC News NOW
    1,262,358 views <—— Not all of this is the Trump Town Hall
    Streamed live on Oct 15, 2020




Disclaimer: This is a guest post and it doesn’t necessarily represent the views of IWB.


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