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MTV VMAs' viewership soars 66% over last year to 10.1 million

MTV VMAs' viewership soars 66% over last year to 10.1 million
Miley Cyrus at the MTV Video Music Awards. (John Shearer / Associated Press)

The 2013 Video Music Awards on MTV -- which featured a much-criticized performance by Miley Cyrus and a brief reunion of the boy band 'N Sync -- drew 10.1 million viewers Sunday night, according to Nielsen, up 66% from last year. 

The telecast garnered a rating of 7.8 in the network's core 12-34 demographic, up 47% from 2012. The event is the top cable entertainment broadcast of the year in the 12-34 demographic.

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Viewership of the event took a nosedive last year. The 2012 telecast, which competed with a speech by President Obama at the Democatic National Convention, had a total viewership less than half the size of 2011's still-record tally of 12.4 million

Sunday night's event also blew up on social media.

Miley Cyrus' medley of her "We Can't Stop" and Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines," in which Cyrus displayed her twerking abilities, danced with a foam finger and stripped down to her underwear, generated a record 306,000 tweets per minute, beating the reaction to Beyonce's Super Bowl performance. 

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