Trump and the media might be arguing over how many people showed up at the National Mall to watch his inauguration—but one thing is undeniable: the TV ratings for Trump’s inauguration were “yuge.”
According to the Nielsen Ratings, a whopping 30.6 million viewers, across 12 TV channels, watched the 45th President get sworn in on Friday afternoon.
Those sky-high ratings make Trump’s inauguration the third-most-watched in history—narrowly behind Barack Obama’s historic inauguration in 2009, and Ronald Reagan’s in 1981.
However, because of how viewing patterns have changed since Obama and Reagan’s inaugurations, Trump’s inauguration might actually have been the most-watched of all time. Nielsen only monitors those watching programs on television—without factoring in the viewers who streamed the inauguration online.
That’s a figure easily expected to be in the tens of millions, as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and CNN all aired the swearing-in ceremony online—a feature not yet widely available in 2009, let alone 1981.
CNN alone announced that 16.9 million people had watched the inauguration on CNN.com. While those numbers aren’t exactly comparable to Nielsen’s ratings, it’s clear that—coupled with other major online livestreams—Trump’s inauguration was very likely witnessed by over 50 million people.
No matter how many people ultimately showed up on the National Mall to watch Trump in person, it’s clear: the former TV star-turned-President can still draw huge numbers of eyes on television.