The tackiness of the French Magazine ‘Closer’ is to my mind undoubted although drawing parallels between this intrusion and that which Princess Diana encountered are somewhat different. It would be very fair to argue that a woman married to the Heir to the British Throne having an ill concealed affair with an Egyptian, was very much in the public interest. However The Duchess of Cambridge’s breasts may well arouse curiosity but were not until now, a matter of great public importance. They should never have become that and it’s sad that they should have become so.
People will debate the legalities, they will debate the internet and social media and they will have tantrums. It’s the latter that I find bewildering. It is only a short while since The News of The World phone hacking outrage that had everyone including the public screaming about their rights to privacy. They scream daily about being tracked on the internet, about CCTV and respect. It is only a short while since The Royal Wedding and The Queen’s Jubilee celebrations both of which they roared approval for. However when news broke about candid pictures of The Duchess’s breasts the country’s initial distaste instead became an attack on The Duchess and The Royal Family.
People suggested that as she was in the public eye, she was fair game and that she was no different to anybody else. Well it all seems hypocritical to me. It seems we have a public with a miniscule memory and that will react to whatever it is fed without ever sitting back and considering matters before it does. Quite frankly I believe that being a propagandist in 21century Britain would be easier than crushing grapes with a steamroller. It is public made of sheep.
It says it abhors intrusion and protests so much about it, that the legal face of media is changed forever. It waxes lyrical about our new ‘people’s princess’ and about how she is ‘one of us’. Yet today there was no real support for the lovely Kate and that is a hideous reflection on us all. I say we are all equally entitled to our privacy. It is that simple. The complexity occurs when you try to legislate. Well you cant, not effectively. Nor does legislating stop people from doing something. The only solution lies in all of us remembering the old Salford expression ‘It’s just not right’ which the Photographer concerned, The Editor of ‘Closer’ and too many of the British Public have evidently never learned.