How the 2015 #VMAs unfolded on Twitter

By ‎@joannepark‎
Monday, 31 August 2015

As stars and fans gathered to celebrate the year’s most-loved music videos at the 2015 @MTV Video Music Awards, Twitter provided the social soundtrack for all of the live reactions — and a front row seat to the festivities.

Three hours before and during the east coast airing, there were more than 47 million Tweets sent about the VMAs globally. When the measurement window is extended to three hours before and after the show, volume jumps to nearly 53 million Tweets, including commentary about the performances and other moments, stars, videos and votes for the fan-powered awards.*

Here are the moments that generated the most conversation on Twitter globally (three hours before, and during, broadcast):

  1. @KanyeWest accepts the Vanguard Award and announces he is running for President in 2020 (See the whole speech in this Tweet or check out this Vine for a 6 second summary.)
  2. @JohnLegend and @Pharrell perform
  3. @BigSean, @KanyeWest, and @JohnLegend win Video with a Social Message Award
  4. @JustinBieber ends his performance in tears on stage
  5. @TaylorSwift13 wins Best Female Video for “Blank Space”

As Twitter chatter boomed, a few stars stood out in the conversation. Here were the most-discussed of the night:

  1. Kanye West (@KanyeWest)
  2. Miley Cyrus (@MileyCyrus)
  3. 5 Seconds of Summer (@5sos)
  4. Justin Bieber @justinbieber
  5. Nicki Minaj (@NICKIMINAJ)

Twitter is the venue for stars like @MileyCyrus and @taylorswift13, who are sharing their excitement directly with fans through photos and videos:


Artists like @ddlovato and Vine star @ShawnMendes shared their VMA experiences every step of the way:



@MTV transported fans to the pre-show festivities with multiple broadcasts, while @UsWeekly took viewers straight to the red carpet.


As the show aired, artists in the audience, and stars who watched from home, joined the lively conversation happening on Twitter.

Twitter TV activity and reach data for the US market will be available from Nielsen tomorrow at 1 p.m. ET.

* Updated 9/22 to include full measurement window