And online trolls will be investigated.
Sure, being a royal has its advantages – the fashion, the tiaras, the castles – but it definitely also has its drawbacks, from the end of privacy and safety fears to the dreaded rumour mill.
No one knows this more than the two millennial Duchesses, Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle.
The two women, both 37, have endured an endless stream of online bullying since becoming royals, and from the continuous speculation around a supposed feud to racist abuse, it has gotten extremely out of hand.
‘The Palace has always monitored comments, but it’s a hugely time consuming thing. They can block certain words, but some of it is quite serious,’ a source explained to Hello! last month. ‘Over the course of last year, with hundreds of thousands of comments, there were two or three that were violent threats. You can delete and report and block people and the police have options around particular people. It’s something you have to manage because there’s no other way to control it.’
Now, the royal family seems to have found a solution, creating and issuing a set of social media guidelines for their fans and followers ‘to help create a safe environment on all social media channels.’
‘We ask that anyone engaging with our social media channels shows courtesy, kindness and respect for all other members of our social media communities,’ the statement reads before listing the guidelines that user comments cannot include.
The comments must not:
- Contain spam, be defamatory of any person, deceive others, be obscene, offensive, threatening, abusive, hateful, inflammatory or promote sexually explicit material or violence.
- Promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age.
- Breach any of the terms of any of the social media platforms themselves.
- Be off-topic, irrelevant or unintelligible.
- Contain any advertising or promote any services.
Failure to comply with these rules can lead to varying consequences according to the statement.
‘We reserve the right to determine, at our discretion, whether contributions to our social media channels breach our guidelines. We reserve the right to hide or delete comments made on our channels, as well as block users who do not follow these guidelines.’
The statement continued: ‘We also reserve the right to send any comments we deem appropriate to law enforcement authorities for investigation as we feel necessary or is required by law.’
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Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.
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