Kensington Palace is taking a stand against the ‘spiteful’ abuse aimed at Kate and Meghan on its social media channels by publishing a set of online rules.
The palace released a statement on Monday saying that trolls who attack the royals on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter will either be blocked or reported to the police.
‘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 new guidelines state that all comments posted by the public on any of the social media channels run by The Royal Family, Clarence House and Kensington Palace must NOT:
be defamatory of any person
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.
The Palace also says that if anyone violates these guidelines, it will take action stating that it reserves the right:
to determine, at our discretion, whether contributions to our social media channels breach our guidelines
to hide or delete comments made on our channels, as well as block users who do not follow these guidelines
to send any comments we deem appropriate to law enforcement authorities for investigation as we feel necessary or is required by law.
The Duchess of Sussex and the Duchess of Cambridge have been the target of abusive online comments for over a year – some of a racist and sexist nature.
Comments left on social media include accusing Meghan of ‘faking’ her pregnancy by ‘holding her bump too much.’
Others have called Kate ‘boring’.
Thousands of royal fans took to Facebook to voice their support of the new guidelines, with many saying that it’s ‘about time’ the palace took action:
‘Good. Some of the spiteful comments about Megan have been totally uncalled for,’ said Jean Clarke.
‘The slagging that Megan has had I don’t blame them!!’ said Bill Collins.
‘Far too much bullying going on lots fake news out there its disgusting all hatefull remarks towards megan’ said Elizabeth Summers Lindsay.
But others think this is a matter of free speech …
‘How ridiculous, this is a democracy, everyone has an opinion, I’m sure the royals have a go at someone now and then,’ said Mervyn John Smith.
‘What makes them different from everyone one else getting trolled?’ said Alastair Hilton.
‘They have no jurisdiction over the internet,’ said Dave Ginn.
Despite the growing online debate, Kensington Palace maintains:
‘The aim of our social media channels is to create an environment where our community can engage safely in debate and is free to make comments, questions and suggestions.’
Do you think the guidelines are a step in the right direction? Or do you think The Royal Family have hindered the public’s right of free speech?