The royal family has issued new social media guidelines for fans

The British royal family has issued a new set of social media guidelines for fans. In a joint statement released today, it was said, “these guidelines are in place to help create a safe environment on all social media channels run by the royal family, Clarence House and Kensington Palace.”

The royal family has asked that anyone engaging with their social media channels shows “courtesy, kindness and respect” to all others in their social “community”. The new guidelines are outlined below.

Why now?

Over the past number of years – and particularly since the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle last May – the comment sections beneath the royals’ social media posts have become a place for heated debate.

Related: 'Meghan Markle is being vilified just as Diana was'

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Not only are people pitting Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton against one another, but there are also defamatory comments about people’s race, parenting styles and levels of education.

It seems the royal family has decided enough is enough; calling for fans to engage safely and respectfully, without the use of hurtful or abusive language.

 

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The new rules

In their statement, the royal family said, “By engaging with our social media channels, you agree to follow these guidelines." 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.
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What happens if the rules get broken?

Should anyone breach these new guidelines, the royals say, "We reserve the right to hide or delete comments made on our channels, as well as block users" who go against the rules.

What's more, they also said, "We 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."

A positive response

For the most part, these new guidelines have been well-received by the public. "Those in charge must be vigilant in banning hate accounts, muting offensive words, deleting vile comments, and reporting death threats/violent comments," one person said on Twitter. "The royal family social media accounts should be a no-hate zone. It's time to end cyberbullying and hate in all forms," they added.

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Related: Kensington Palace spends 'hours' tackling
online abuse and threats towards Kate and Meghan

Another person tweeted, "Glad the royal family is finally addressing the issue of people using social media to attack, harass, and slander others. No one should hide under the guise of free press or speech to abuse people."

However, others have commented it's a shame these guidelines need to be implemented at all. “What an unfortunate thing to have to do. To have to publish guidelines for how to interact shows what a sorry state we are in. Sigh.”

 

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Photo: Kensington Palace via Instagram 


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