Kate and William’s friendly treatment of the media shows Harry’s failings

In a candid eight-second video, Kate Middleton and Prince William show exactly where Prince Harry went wrong.

Sometimes, just sometimes, being a member of the royal family seems really fun. Not just glamorous (“crack the tiaras Madam, we’ve got a state dinner”) or awe-inspiring (watching a crowd of tens of thousands lining the mall) or extremely privileged (walking past all the Reubens lining the lobby each times you go to the bathroom) but actually fun.

Currently, William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are in Belize as they continue their week-long Caribbean PR blitzkrieg in honor of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Although things started out bumpy, with a planned trip to a cocoa farm having to be canned due to a small protest, since then it’s been a royal paint-by-numbers tour.

There were school children waving flags, a particularly thrilling moment of watching two people paralyzed from the rhythm trying to dance and the sight of a future queen trying her hand at a local industry spot. (“That’s how you burn the calories before (you) eat the chocolate,” William joked as Kate was shown how to grind cocoa nibs.)

So far, Gan Gan (aka Her Majesty) must be very satisfied with their work. And so far, it’s all been so sleepy and predictable of a release that we’ve avoided really talking about it.

No one but the most ardent monarchist (Tony Abbott is that you?) actually wants to hear about this rote charm offensive.

But something happened on Monday when they visited a Mayan archaeological site in the jungle, dubbed the Sky Palace, and there they had what really looked like fun. And here is the real crush: they had fun with… the press.

You see, the reporters who travel with them now regularly post behind-the-scenes videos that offer a very tantalizing glimpse of what’s really going on. (In short: a lot of time.)

A clip has made the rounds and shows the Cambridges posing for the press, with photographers positioned both on the ground and atop the ancient ruin.

As William and Kate turned and walked back to the media pack closest to them, they could be seen laughing, the Duke joked: ‘We have one [group] on one side and the other on the other. You’re in each other’s photographs,” as his wife smiled.

It was a totally off-the-cuff but very illuminating moment that explains why the Cambridges have thrived in their roles and why the royal careers of Harry and Meghan, Duke and Duchess of Sussex hit the rocks.

It all comes down to the brothers’ totally divergent approaches to handling the press.

When they were boys, they were both in the car when their mother Diana, Princess of Wales was chased by marauding snappers and they surely both witnessed the toll the tabloid hunt took on her.

“One of the feelings that always comes back to me is helplessness. Being a guy and being too young to help a woman, in this case your mother, and that happened every day,” Harry recalled last year. )

As they entered their twenties, the demands of the press on them also increased. Watch the photocall held to mark William’s first day at university in Scotland and his unease is evident.

However, over the years William has come to understand the total, and possibly unhealthy, symbiotic relationship between Fleet Street and Buckingham Palace.

Each needs the other, a fact the eldest from Wales would have come to terms with. (Like? Probably not.)

While in a perfect world the Duke of Cambridge would probably want the whole of the British press to be stuck permanently on a remote outpost in the Outer Hebrides, he has developed, by all accounts, a relationship of mature work with the small number of journalists and photographers whose job it is to cover all things royal.

After all, every time he and Kate left Kensington Palace for an official engagement, they would see the same set of faces.

(When Kate was in Denmark for a whirlwind tour last month, she was seen laughing and chatting with the press after she slipped into a huge adult-sized slippery dive.)

Contrast that with Harry’s dyspeptic approach. Do you remember the years of falling in nightclubs and fighting with snappers?

While after that there was a period where it seemed like he was growing on that front, relations between him and the press took a nosedive when he started dating Suit star Meghan Markle.

A week after their romance broke, he issued a scathing statement through his publicist condemning the racist and sexist abuse she had faced.

Things only got worse then.

In October 2018, the Sussex newlyweds embarked on a hugely successful tour of Australia and the South Pacific.

When he walked to the back of the plane to speak to the press who had covered the trip, he reportedly said “Thank you for coming, even though you weren’t invited”.

“Every engagement I’m with him, he just scowls at us. I can’t stress this enough, he can’t hide his disdain. It’s so uncomfortable, he’s got fury and venom in eyes. He is very tortured,” said a royal correspondent who was on the plane that day. the Guardian.)

A year later, while on tour in southern Africa, he was caught mocking a very experienced royal reporter when she asked him a question.

A few days later, he revealed that Meghan was suing the Mail on Sundaythe parent company of for publishing parts of a letter she had sent to her estranged father and which he was suing The sun and the shimmer for alleged phone hacking.

“He became increasingly adult irritated by the media coverage and had an almost unhealthy obsession with it, to the extent that he even read comments under articles online,” said former BBC royal correspondent Peter Hunt, during an interview in 2020. then discuss the issues with correspondents for those newspapers when he meets them.

Since then, the Sussexes’ antagonism to the Fourth Estate only seems to have taken root even more deeply and irreversibly, with them bringing in lawyers for reporting from the most established of outlets in the world. establishment, the BBC and The temperature in 2021.

Earlier this year, Harry launched a libel action against the Mail on Sunday on a report regarding his request for a judicial appeal of the decision to remove the family’s official police protection.

It’s not that Harry and Meghan don’t want any media attention, however. Heaven no.

After the Megxit they were interviewed for podcasts, Meghan took part in a New York Times summit and appeared on the Ellen show, while Harry filmed a segment for theLate Late Show with James Cordon.

There was also their comic Photoshop appearance on the cover of Time magazine, the duo, of course, also underwent the softest of Oprah Winfrey interrogations for a primetime TV special and Harry appeared on camera for her mental health series. The me you can’t see.

Ultimately, it would seem that the difference between Harry’s and William’s attitudes towards the media comes down to emotion versus pragmatism.

While William and Kate have taken steps, time and time again, to protect their children’s privacy, they also understand that they need major newspapers, websites and TV stations to tell the world all the good things about they do and the press enthusiastically does it daily.

Likewise, the Cambridges also perceive that there is a world of difference between sneaky photographers trying to snap pictures of their children out of the blue and professional journalists of credible headlines covering the royal beat.

To be an active member of the royal family means to sell the monarchy with boundless vigor and zeal in any way possible. And that’s the job: sell, sell, sell.

You will never be able to do this if you take offense at people who try to help you get your point across.

What William and Kate proved with this clip from the Belizean jungle is that the press doesn’t have to be the enemy of the royal family. Would they choose to spend hours in the Caribbean heat with this batch of scribes and snappers of their own free will? Eh! Insert here the mocking growl of your choice. But what they’re willing to accept is that it’s work, pure and simple, and sometimes that work is… kind of fun.

Enjoy it while you can, mad Cambridge kids. You have a good five decades ahead of you.

Daniela Elser is a royal pundit and writer with over 15 years of experience working with a number of top media titles in Australia.

Read related topics:Kate MiddletonPrince Harry

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