From Henry VIII's many wives to the Queen's choice of attire, there has always been an interest in the British Royal Family and their whereabouts. Let's face it; even if we couldn't care less about the royals, we all know where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were last month; on their tour of Australia and New Zealand of course. The media followed their every move. Some even followed the couple to their private accommodation where they took photographs of personal and private moments in the garden. So, when does an interest become too much or even an obsession?
When Prince George was born last July, people across the globe were excited at the prospect of witnessing such a historic moment. The world's media gathered outside St Mary's Hospital in London waiting for the young couple to walk down the Lindo Wing steps and show their newborn son to the world for the first time. From Japan to Canada, the world was put on hold. Would the new third in line to the throne be a girl or a boy? Will the name be George or Alexandra? Once we first saw the young prince, he featured on pretty much every nation's national newspaper front page. Nonetheless, this offers no proof that the media is obsessed with the royal family. This was a big, unique event so it is only expected that this gets lots of media coverage.
Looking at the example first mentioned in this post, the world's media flocked to Oceania in April to follow the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge around and observe Prince George carry out his first official royal engagement. Every night on the evening news, there was guaranteed to be a news report on their whereabouts and what the couple got up to today. Being a monarchist, I was interested and followed the tour thoroughly on social media. However, I did spare a thought for people who do not share the same viewpoint as me and it raises the question: who cares about a family going on holiday? The newspapers were all over the story. There hasn't been a single day where George or Kate hasn't featured on the cover for around a month. In The Times newspaper a few weeks ago, a concerned reader wrote to the paper saying "Sir, Wednesday's paper did not have a photograph of the Duchess of Cambridge. I do hope she is all right". Whereas this is obviously a sarcastic republican, it certainly provided lots of laughs and quickly went viral on social media.
Most news organisations treat the royals with a great deal of respect ensuring nothing they publish might offend the family. However, some news outlets try to degrade the royal family and invade in their privacy. A classic example of this is last year when intrusive photographs of the Duchess of Cambridge were published in a French magazine. Now, I am no expert on privacy laws or photography but I am pretty sure zooming in on somebody in a private location with a professional camera is journalism at its lowest form. Yet the irony being, these same organisations wonder why the royals hate the press. Another example of poor journalism can be seen in UK tabloids. All too often I see front page headlines such as "Diana's ghost tells Kate you are too thin," Kate has many talents, but I doubt psychic powers is one of them. Let's not forget what has been happening in Memphis a few weeks ago when Prince William ordered water on a plane, a US journalist called it an exclusive. These stories convince me that there is some kind of obsession.
Despite some people showing no interest in what shoes Kate is wearing at all, the royals intrigue and captivate people of all cultures and backgrounds. With the recent reintroduction of knighthoods in Australia and a visit from the royals, support for a republic in the country is at its lowest in years. This straight away shows that people are interested in the British monarchy and the media should most certainly report on it. At the end of the day, people idolise the Queen and her family and reporting on the good work they do is popular among audiences, as well as crucial.
Overall, it is clear that we love the royal family, but why? Is it because we admire the work they do for charities? Is it that we idolise the family and try to be like them, particularly the younger members of the family? Or is it just propaganda that the media make us feed upon every day? I have come to the conclusion that we, the people, are not obsessed with the royal family; the media are though. But that is just my personal conclusion, what do you think?