Saturday 24 August 2019

Meghan and Harry set up official Instagram account for 'important announcements'

Harry and Meghan have a new Instagram account
Harry and Meghan have a new Instagram account
Harry and Meghan have a new Instagram account

Laura Elston

Meghan and Harry have set up their own official - and joint - Instagram account.

The couple, who are expecting a baby this month, said @SussexRoyal would be used to share the work that drives them, and important announcements.

The move comes as they are splitting their household from the William and Kate, whose Instagram account is @KensingtonRoyal.

Meghan and Harry's new household will be based at Buckingham Palace, while William - a future King - and Kate will remain at Kensington Palace.

In a message on their first post, Harry and Meghan thanked people for their support, saying: "Welcome to our official Instagram; we look forward to sharing the work that drives us, the causes we support, important announcements, and the opportunity to shine a light on key issues.

"We thank you for your support, and welcome you to @sussexroyal."- Harry & Meghan."

It was accompanied by an image bearing a white version of couple's royal cypher - the entwined initials H and M below a coronet - on a navy background.

Kensington Palace's Twitter feed introduced the new account, saying: "Welcome to Instagram, SussexRoyal!"

Harry and Meghan's first post also included a gallery of photos of them on engagements around the world, including on trips to Australia and Fiji.

The new @SussexRoyal Instagram account notched up nearly 300,000 followers within an hour of launching - including Meghan's best friend Jessica Mulroney and celebrities David Beckham and Gwyneth Paltrow.

Harry and Meghan have a new Instagram account
Harry and Meghan have a new Instagram account

Princess Eugenie posted a picture of Harry and Meghan on her own account with the message "Welcome cousins. @sussexroyal".

Former actress Meghan revealed only last month that she does not read newspapers or engage with Twitter to avoid getting "muddled" by the "noise", whether positive or negative.

The duchess's admission came when she joined a panel of feminists and national figures to mark International Women's Day.

She told the audience: "It's our responsibility to make a choice on what we click on, we make a choice of what we read, we make a choice of what we engage in, that's our personal decision to not be there for negativity, to be more positive and action-based.

"And for me that's a tricky one because I'm not part of any of that."

Ex-Suits star Meghan used to have her own personal Twitter and Instagram accounts, as well as a lifestyle website thetig.com, but closed them down ahead of her wedding to Harry.

The Sussexes' new Instagram account has been introduced less than a month after the royal family published new guidelines for members of the public interacting with them on social media.

It warned that trolls who post offensive or abusive messages on official royal channels will be blocked, and may even be reported to the police.

This followed news that Kensington Palace staff were spending hours each week moderating online abuse aimed at Kate and pregnant Meghan.

Some of the worst, hate-filled personal abuse is said to be between rival fans of the duchesses.

The royal family's website said the guidelines were introduced to try to maintain a safe environment on channels run by the three households, and it called for users to show "courtesy, kindness and respect".

Harry warned against the perils of social media at the WE Day UK event in March.

He told schoolchildren and students at the SSE Arena in Wembley, London: "If we look at the world we're living in, I know it can feel challenging sometimes, but your role is to shine the light.

"Every day you are inundated with an over-exposure of advertising and mainstream media, social media and endless comparisons, distorting the truth, and trying to manipulate the power of positive thinking.

"But you don't let them sway you."

At the moment, Harry and Meghan do not have a separate Twitter account, but their names have been removed from the @KensingtonRoyal Twitter account bio, which now reads: "The official account of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Royal Foundation, based at Kensington Palace."

@Sussexroyal on Twitter is not associated with the royal family, and is used by a Kevin Keiley, who currently has 26 followers and whose bio reads simply "Sussex". This is now likely to receive scores of notifications thanks to Harry and Meghan's new identical Instagram handle.

PA Media

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