Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s ‘challenge to social media giants’ exposed by expert
Meghan Markle: Commentator discusses social media decision
Prince Harry, 36, and Meghan Markle, 39, established a strong social media presence during their short time as working royals. Their Sussex Royal Instagram account amassed more than 10 million followers and allowed Harry and Meghan to share regular updates with their fans.
However, the couple were forced to abandon their Sussex Royal brand and retire their Instagram account following their royal stepdown last March.
Since then they have relocated to the USA with their son Archie Harrison and taken steps to establish themselves outside the royal fold.
In recent months, Harry and Meghan have gained financial independence from the Firm by signing lucrative deals with Netflix and Spotify.
Their first Archewell podcast was released on Spotify at the start of the year just days before they launched the Archewell.com website.
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Despite the huge success of their Sussex Royal Instagram account, the couple will not be making one for Archewell, an insider has claimed.
A source close to the Sussexes told the Times the couple had “no plans” to use social media for their new Archewell Foundation and were “very unlikely” to return to platforms in a personal capacity.
Meghan and Harry have both campaigned to tackle online bullying and the Duchess has previously shared her anguish at being targeted by trolls.
Their reported decision to ditch social media is said to be informed by their own experiences of online bullying.
While the move may have surprised some, a language expert has claimed it could all be part of a wider plan.
Language expert and author Judi James has studied celebrity behaviour for years and shared her reaction to the Sussexes’ supposed social media boycott.
Judi told Express.co.uk: “When Meghan spoke about the hate being almost ‘unsurvivable’ it must have sounded like the voice of empathy.
“But is this new move to be seen as a solution or is it a first step towards campaigning for bigger, structural change in the world of social media?”
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She added: “The thing we have learnt about Harry and Meghan is that their desire for privacy was a non-runner.
“Since their move to the US they haven’t just raised their profile and their power-base, they have shared new conversations and new glimpses of their lives together as a family.
“Video appearances, podcasts and public statements of intent are pinning them up there on the world stage, with the new ‘Hi, I’m Harry’ personal re-branding showing the prince lapping up the opportunity to show the man behind all the royal protocol.”
According to Judi, the couple could be missing a trick by writing off social media entirely.
She said: “Social media allows celebs to bypass all the magazine and news editors and post up their own thoughts, stories and photographs direct as an act of ongoing and unedited PR.
“It also creates a direct conversation with the public or at least the public that frequent the social media sites, and that comes at a price that, for Harry and Meghan, seems to have been too much to pay.”
Judi claimed the couple’s latest move could be the start of a larger campaign.
She said: “Harry has appeared to campaign for change in the US though, suggesting this might be the start of something bigger for the couple.
“Are they really lowering their profile or are they using their power to influence some kind of change in the world of social media?
“Pre-social media insults to celebrities had to arrive by post, but no-one suggested changes to the Royal Mail.”
Judi claimed that by boycotting social media, Harry and Meghan could be laying the gauntlet down to Silicon Valley bosses.
She added: “Now though, they might see work to be done under the umbrella of Harry’s desire to ‘make the world a better place.’”
“This is, interestingly, a phrase often used by giants in Silicon Valley so it will be interesting to see if Harry’s repeated use of it has also been a way of throwing down a challenge in the start of a bid to influence bigger change.
“Their next big announcement should probably be a detailed statement of intent then but it will be interesting to see how they publish it.”
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