The Donald Trump-owned Miss USA pageant aired on Reelz Channel on Sunday evening amid controversy surrounding the aspiring presidential candidate.
NBCUniversal, Univision and other companies severed ties with Trump last week after he made derogatory comments about Mexican immigrants. Both television networks announced they would stop airing Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants. NBCUniversal and Trump's company, the Trump Organization, operated the pageants in a joint venture, which started in 2002.
In addition to airing on Reelz, the pageant was also live streamed on Miss USA's YouTube channel, where it has garnered fewer than 38,000 online viewers. As of Monday morning, the live-stream post has racked up about about 330,000 clicks, despite no longer having any footage streaming.
By comparison, last year the pageant drew 5.5 million viewers in live-plus-same day ratings on NBC, according to Nielsen.
Reelz Channel's lineup includes shows such as "Hollywood Hillbillies," "Access Hollywood LIVE" and "Master P's Family Empire."
After Reelz picked up the pageant, some fans rallied on Twitter to ask cable broadcasters, such as Cox, to carry the channel. A Twitter account called "Save the Sash," which has 820 followers, called on viewers to help make the show more accessible to people across the country.
"Thank you to all of YOU for tuning in to #MissUSA and Tweeting along with the show!" Reelz tweeted on Sunday.
The pageant sparked about 70,000 tweets from users on the social media platform, according to Nielsen Twitter ratings. Such high numbers helped the show top Nielsen's Twitter ratings for the week of July 6, surpassing "The Bachelorette" for the No. 1 spot.
About 23,426 tweets contained "reactions," or tweets with emotions, according to Canvs, a social TV platform created by the firm Mashwork. The company uses relevant tweets, provided by Nielsen, to gauge what emotions people have about TV. The tweets are then broken down into reactions.
An estimated 29.6% of the reaction tweets contained emotions of "love," with many talking about their favorite candidates. However, about 14.3% of users also had reactions of "hate," some even calling out Trump.
One user wrote: "#MissUSA is a disgusting, sexist event that doesn't belong in the 21st century, so it's no wonder it's sponsored by @realDonaldTrump."
Staff writer Stephen Battaglio contributed to this report.
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