Royal expert shares tragic verdict on Kate Middleton – accusing palace of not protecting her

The royal family has come under fire after the manipulated picture of Kate Middleton and her children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis, was published on Mother’s Day on the Prince and Princess of Wales’ official Instagram account.

 

News agency director says Palace isn’t a trusted source after Kate Middleton picture blunder

It took a few hours before photography experts and social media users began analyzing the picture, finding several errors and examples of bad editing. Several news agencies, including the Associated Press and Getty, sent a “kill notice” (an advisory notice to remove or not use a specific photo).

Another news agency that used a “kill notice” was the well-renowned Agence France-Presse (AFP). Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Media Show, Phil Chetwynd, AFP’s global news director, said that Kensington Palace is no longer a trusted source.

“No, absolutely not. Like with anything, when you’re let down by a source the bar is raised … We sent out notes to all our teams at the moment to be absolutely super more vigilant about the content coming across our desk — even from what we would call trusted sources,” he said, as reported by Deadline.

Chetwynd continued by revealing that several news agencies asked Kensington Palace Sunday if they could provide the original picture. However, according to him, the agencies did not receive a reply and the image was pulled.

Moreover, Chetwynd said kill notices are usually reserved for sources such as North Korea.

“To kill something on the basis of manipulation [is rare. We do it] once a year maybe, I hope less. The previous kills we’ve had have been from the North Korean news agency or the Iranian news agency,” Chetwynd added.

Kate Middleton
Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

He concluded, “One thing that’s really important is you cannot be distorting reality for the public. There’s a question of trust. And the big issue here is one of trust, and the lack of trust and the falling trust of the general public in institutions generally and in the media. And so it’s extremely important that a photo does represent broadly the reality that it’s seen in.”

Kate Middleton broke ‘golden rule’ with Mother’s Day picture, expert says

Kate Middleton received a lot of criticism, especially after she announced that she had edited and posted the picture herself.

However, Kensington Palace’s failure to comment on the picture incident—especially to post a newly picture of Kate to assure the public that she is fine—has made conspiracy theories even more intense. Conspiracies appeared already in February as no significant updates were given on the Princess of Wales, but now, they have escalated.

Meanwhile, the fact that Kate edited the picture herself might not be the worst thing. According to The Sun’s royal photographer Arthur Edwards, the Princess of Wales has learned a “tough and very public lesson” breaking the “golden rule.”

“It’s a golden rule that while you can crop a picture, you never, ever interfere with the image itself. Kate shouldn’t have done it, and she was right to put her hand up and admit to her mistake so quickly,” Edwards said, adding that social media have been overflowing with “disgusting bile and hateful comments about her.”

“Now the conspiracies are flying thick and fast — not that these people need any encouragement. These cheap shots at Kate will be upsetting for her.”

Kate Middleton
Zac Goodwin – Pool/Getty Images

As mentioned, many experts and members of the public have called for Kensington Palace to release a new picture of Kate—or preferably the unedited version of the Mother’s Day picture.

“Eager for an update”

Royal photographer Arthur Edwards agrees it is surprising that the palace hasn’t released the original picture, as it could be used to “draw a line” under the incident.

“But of course this comes amid all the speculation as to what’s happening with Kate, who, bar a brief picture yesterday and last week, none of us has seen since December. So many people — myself included — have been eager for an update on the Princess of Wales’s health since she underwent abdominal surgery in January.”

Edwards added, “A bodged attempt at photographic manipulation may have been, but I still think it’s a delightful image. Kate looks radiant and so proud on Mother’s Day, surrounded by her loving kids. It’s full of uplifting love and emotion.”

Even though people may be upset with how Kate and The Firm have handled the situation, it appears that, before the mishap, the public’s support of the princess was still strong.

A newly published Ipsos poll, commissioned for The Evening Standard, shows that Kate Middleton is the UK’s favorite royal. According to the publication’s poll, which was carried out before the publication of the controversial photo on Mother’s Day, 38 percent of Brits like Kate Middleton, most of all royal family members.

Prince William, Kate Middleton
Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

According to the poll, the Princess of Wales is the most popular among women, 44 percent, compared to 32 percent among men. Moreover, Half of those aged 55 to 75 also named Kate their favorite.

Royal experts accuse Palace of not protecting Kate Middleton

In the same poll, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s popularity plummeted by three points, with Harry now at 11 percent and Meghan at seven percent.

Several royal experts have argued that Kate needs to take responsibility for her actions. At the same time, royal expert Hilary Fordwich told Fox that the palace is responsible for what she calls “yet another public relations disaster.”

“The certainty is that a ‘slimmed down monarchy’ means fewer are guiding the royals and those who are aren’t as media savvy as they need to be,” Fordwich said. “In our fast-paced world with tech-savvy media outlets, the palaces need to hire the best and brightest in such fields.”

Although Kate had to apologize, the royal expert pointed out that Kate Middleton showed “integrity.”

“While this certainly isn’t ‘business as usual’ nor what we would expect from a royal household… it shows great humility to admit one’s mistakes,” Fordwich continued. “Others might have either remained silent or tried to blame another. Kate issued a straight-up, no-nonsense apology. Many could learn a lesson from such.”

Royal expert and author Tom Bower took it a step further, accusing the palace of not protecting Kate at all.

Shirlaine Forrest/Getty Images

He said that the Princess of Wales isn’t surrounded by wise people and that the picture should have been handled by professional staff at Kensington Palace.

“People around the world just want to bring her down because it gives them pleasure. And then, when she did, they should have got a professional photographer in to make sure there were no hiccups like has now occurred,” Bower told The Sun.

“She has been under terrible pressure to perform”

He continued: “She’s undergone the most very serious operation imaginable. She needs a long time to recover. And I fear that she has been under terrible pressure to perform and instead of protecting her, her staff in Kensington Palace, failed to give her the support and protection she needs.”

Tom Bower concluded that Kate Middleton made an “honest mistake,” which isn’t a big deal at all. He advised the royal family not to release any more pictures and instead focus on helping Kate fully recover.

“There are republicans and mischief makers who want to do everything now, to destroy the monarchy, to destroy Britain as it is today, who don’t share our values and see Kate as a soft target, an easy target and another target to seek to undermine British values and British tradition,” he added.

The controversial picture incident surrounding Kate Middleton isn’t the first royal scandal. Over the decades, many other things have rocked the royal family at its core, and while the Princess of Wales hasn’t been directly involved in one, she still knows how to learn from her mistake.

Kate Middleton, William
Chris Jackson/Getty Images

In 2011, after their engagement was announced, Prince William and Kate were interviewed by ITV. The princess got questions about how she deals with criticism.

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