Photo by: KGC-178 / STAR MAX / IPx 2021 04/9/21 The Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, passed away on … [+]
KGC-178 / STAR MAX / IPx
On Friday morning the royal family announced the death of Prince Philip, husband of Queen Elizabeth II. In the tradition of the deaths of other kings, an announcement was placed at the gates of Buckingham Palace. In addition, news of Prince Philip’s death spread on social media – a real first for the royal family.
“It is with deep sadness that Her Majesty the Queen announced the death of her beloved husband, HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. HRH passed away peacefully at Windsor Castle this morning,” @RoyalFamily wrote.
It’s worth noting that the social media account, which contains pictures and videos from Buckingham Palace about the work and activities of The Queen and other members of the royal family, has been active since April 2009. He has more than 4.4 million followers – and could probably see a jump in followers with this sad news.
The official announcement was “liked” more than 370,000 times, retweeted more than 200,000 times and had around 22,000 replies on Friday morning. The fact that the news spread so quickly certainly says a lot about the power of social platforms, but it also says a lot about how this is certainly a change in protocol.
“When you think about the citizens the royal family serves and the life they touch, it’s easy to understand why it was so important to share this news on their social media accounts,” the said Futurist and trend expert Scott Steinberg.
“Social media is an easy way to connect and keep up to date with people around the world. That includes sad announcements like this one,” added Steinberg. “Compared to television, radio and newspapers, social media offers the opportunity for the news to spread faster and become all the more immediate.”
The change in protocol also suggests that the royal family has changed over time.
“It’s part of the new protocol, but during the pandemic we need to remember that more people are being glued to their screens on their various devices,” Steinberg noted. “This was the quick way to get the word out.”
The prince consort
Philip was born into the Greek and Danish royal families. He was born in Greece, but his family was exiled from the country as a child.
He grew up in Great Britain, served in the Royal Navy during World War II and married then Princess Elizabeth in 1947. He was the longest serving royal consort in British history.
At the time of his death, Philip’s full title was HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth and Baron Greenwich, Knight of the Garter, Knight of the Thistle, Order of Merit, Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire, Companion of the Order of Australia, Companion of the order of the queen, privy councilor.
Social media reactions
Public figures from across the UK and around the world pay their tribute on social media.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) was among those quick to make a prepared statement.
“I grieve with the rest of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth at the loss of HRH Prince Philip the Duke of Edinburgh,” wrote Justin Portal Welby, the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury (@JustinWelby), who also shared a statement.
Labor leader and MP Keir Starmer (@Keir_Starmer) wrote: “The UK has lost an exceptional official in Prince Philip. Prince Philip dedicated his life to our country – from an outstanding career in the Royal Navy during World War II to his decades of service as Duke of Edinburgh. “
Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon), First Minister of Scotland, wrote: “I am saddened by the news that the Duke of Edinburgh has died. I send my personal and deepest condolences to Her Majesty The – from @scotgov and the people of Scotland Queen and her family. “
The not so nice reactions
Prince Philip, like many of the royals, could certainly be described as a divisive figure, so one would have expected an endless meme to quickly make the rounds to mock his death. There were certainly some common themes and these were quickly retweeted and shared as well.
We can probably expect a lot more in the coming hours and days.
“Social media is the least traditional communication or media medium,” added Steinberg. “Everyone’s a color commentator these days. Many are doing more and more and taking it to the extreme to get their voices noticed. It’s really not surprising that social media was born out of the internet that has always functioned as the ‘Wild West’ ‘Breaking social norms. “