Royal Family Issues Social Media Guidelines Following Meghan Markle, Kate Middleton Online Abuse

Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton appear in formal outerwear, side by side.
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The royal family will no longer stand for abusive comments on their social media posts. In light of some serious, offensive remarks made against Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton on various social media channels, the royals have issued a set of social media community guidelines. These rules have been put in place to maintain a safe environment for all, according to a press release by the royal family.

“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 press release reads.

The guidelines state that no comment may include spam or advertising to promote any services. In addition, there can be no defamatory, offensive, obscene, abusive, threatening, hateful, sexually explicit, or discriminatory language of any kind. Finally, no comments may be “off-topic, irrelevant or unintelligible.”

Comments must also adhere to the general rules of the social media platforms themselves.

The regulations apply to all accounts listed under The Royal Family, Clarence House, and Kensington Palace. The account holders reserve the right to determine if comments break any 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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“The first few years of a child’s life are more pivotal for social, physical and emotional development, and for future health and happiness than any single moment in our lifetime.” – Duchess of Cambridge, speaking at the 100 Women in Finance’s Gala Dinner at the V&A Museum London in aid of @heads_together legacy programme ‘Mentally Healthy Schools’. Launched by The Duchess at the beginning of 2018, #MentallyHealthySchools is one of the legacy programmes from the Heads Together campaign, which aims to help people of all ages start conversations about their mental health. The landmark project, run by The Royal Foundation, helps teachers and school leaders better support children's mental wellbeing, by offering school staff reliable and practical resources through a website developed by the youth-focussed charity partners of Heads Together; @afnccf , @_place2be and @youngmindsuk

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The social media guidelines come as the Duchess of Sussex and the Duchess of Cambridge frequently fall victim to abusive comments online, CNN reported. Many comments are sexist, while other racist remarks are made against Markle, who married into the royal family last year. These comments most often appear on the royals’ official Instagram and Twitter pages.

In the past, Kensington Palace stated that they tended to leave generally critical comments made against the royal family alone, and only took action with extremely offensive comments. These guidelines will now make for a much more strict policy.

An source told Insider that royal staff members have been monitoring comments since Kensington Palace’s official Instagram and Twitter pages launched, but the negativity has become too much in recent months.

The royal family did reach out to social media firms such as Instagram and Twitter in January for help battling the abuse. The platforms reportedly responded by offering support to the family, although no specific details on their support were given.

U.K. celebrity magazine Hello! also launched a video campaign called Hello To Kindness at the peak of the virtual abuse, onewhich encouraged social media users to speak kindly to the duchesses.