Why Aren’t Royal Family Members Allowed to Have Social Media Accounts?
It seems like everyone these days is on social media. Influencers, teens, adults, bloggers, celebrities… even animals have impressive followings. So why can’t members of the royal family join the 21st century and maintain their own Twitter accounts?
There’s a good reason why royal family members aren’t permitted to have social media accounts – plus why there are some notable exceptions to this rule. Read on to find out which princess has an Instagram and isn’t afraid who knows about it.
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Thank you to everyone in Dundee for the fantastic welcome to The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge! The Duke and Duchess met members of the public after opening @VADundee, the first ever dedicated design museum in Scotland and the only other V&A museum anywhere in the world outside London, and outside the Crescent Community Centre. #RoyalVisitDundee PA / Kensington Palace
Do any royals have social media accounts?
First, a disclaimer: the British royal family adheres to certain rules that other countries don’t follow. Princess Olympia of Greece has a public Instagram. So does Princess Madeleine of Sweden (she’s the one Queen Elizabeth once wanted to set up with her grandson, Prince William).
But when it comes to British royalty, those accounts aren’t nearly so numerous. Most royal social updates come through one of three social media accounts which cover all royal happenings: @TheRoyalFamily, @ClarenceHouse (for the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall) and @KensingtonRoyal (for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge plus the Duke and Duchess of Sussex). These accounts are not run by the royals themselves, so you’d never find any selfies of Meghan Markle making an egg white omelet, for example. But they’re better than nothing.
Which royal family member does post updates on social media? Princess Eugenie (Prince Andrew’s daughter, Queen Elizabeth’s granddaughter) has an Instagram account. She’s allowed to have one since she’s not technically a working royal; Princess Eugenie doesn’t make appearances on behalf of the royal family. Therefore, she’s permitted to have her own Instagram and post whatever she wants. Her sister Princess Beatrice has a Twitter account and does the same.
Why can’t working royals have social media accounts?
The biggest reason royal family members like Prince William, Kate Middleton, Prince Harry, and Meghan Markle can’t have their own social media accounts is simple: it’s all about image.
Royal family members can’t make any public declarations of political affiliations, either. The royal family has a strictly imposed set of rules that dates back centuries and is unlikely to change their policy anytime soon. Even though Meghan Markle was active on social media before marrying Prince Harry, she deleted her account one month before their wedding and hasn’t looked back. She’s also gone quiet on social issues she used to speak out about.
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"We should never forget our military families and all the service you do for us all. We are really looking forward to flying to Cyprus tomorrow and meeting some of the mums and dads of the little ones we have met today. I am sure they will be thrilled with all your cards and gifts, so thank you for posting them today." – The Duchess of Cambridge, as she and The Duke hosted a Christmas Party for families and children of deployed personnel from RAF Coningsby and RAF Marham serving in Cyprus.
Do royal family members wish they were on social media?
But there’s another factor at play: many royal family members don’t even want social media accounts. With so much of their lives available for public consumption, the break from sharing every tidbit probably comes as a small relief. Kate Middleton spoke with students about the harmful effects of social media and how it can cause depression or even become addictive. The Duchess of Cambridge made it clear during her talk that she didn’t feel deprived by not having social media accounts.
There is some speculation that the royal family members may have secret, private accounts out there. But for anyone who’s not a member of the inner circle, we likely won’t find out about them anytime soon.