Things You Can Do On Social Media That Royals Can't

In today's world, it's almost uncommon to talk to someone who doesn't use multiple social media platforms at once. This is because there are so many apps out there, such as Instagram and Snapchat, where you can share your life online, and if you are equally as TikTok-obsessed as we are, then you know how easy it is to spend hours of the day just scrolling and consuming other people's content. However, if you are a fan of following along the lives of the British royal family, then you are in luck! The royals have multiple Instagram accounts you can follow (via Cosmopolitan), where you can consume your daily dose of royal content and mourn not having the life of a princess. 

Although the royal family has specific social media platforms, they can't freely use these apps as similarly as we do. So it's no surprise that the British royal family has to follow multiple strict (and peculiar) rules, whether out in public, at dinner parties, beauty expectations, and especially how they portray themselves on social media. So if you are ever anticipating your favorite royal to create a TikTok video about your favorite trend or take a selfie together, you may be out of luck! Continue reading to learn about the things you can do on social media that the British royal family can't.

The Royal Family is expected to follow a strict set of rules

If you are new to everything British royal family, allow us to explain some weird rules they are expected to follow every day to get you started on why it's not uncommon that they can't post certain things online. According to Marie Claire, each royal member must follow a set of long-lasting family traditions that have been around for decades. For example, the bride's bouquet at a royal wedding must have myrtle, no matter what. In addition, royals must have approval from the queen to propose, the queen picks out the royal bride's wedding tiara, and the family must follow a strict dress code and dress very modestly whenever they are in public. 

There are plenty more rules where that comes from! For example, they are expected to pack specific outfits whenever they travel. In addition, two heirs can't travel together and aren't allowed to eat certain foods — like shellfish — to prevent food poisoning. However, the strangest rule the family must follow is how they are forbidden from ever playing Monopoly. This one, we can't get our heads around! According to Express, the queen has banned the royal family from playing the popular board game because "it gets too vicious."

They are prohibited from having personal social media profiles

Like many, we manage our social media platforms and post whatever our hearts desire. However, that is not the case for the British royal family. Typically, royal family updates can come from one of three Instagram or Twitter accounts, @TheRoyalFamily, @ClarenceHouse, for the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, and @KensingtonRoyal for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. However, the royal family does not personally run any of these accounts, and a social media manager manages them to keep up with updates (via Popsugar). The main reason why royal family members cannot have their own public social media platforms is to keep up with the family's image, as they are not allowed to make any public declarations outside the palace. 

Princess Eugenie, Prince Andrew's daughter, is currently the only royal who can have a public Instagram account. This is because she is technically not considered a "working royal" and does not make any appearances at events on behalf of the family. This way, she and her sister, Princess Beatrice, can have active and public social media platforms.

They aren't allowed to take selfies with fans

If you are out in public and just so happen to somehow run into a celebrity you know and love, it has become common to ask for a quick selfie to capture a photo with your favorite celeb. However, with the royal family, this is a big no-no! In 2017, when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle made their first public appearance heading to a charity fair for World AIDS Day, the formerly royal couple revealed that taking selfies with fans is not allowed or encouraged. According to Insider, when a couple asked Prince Harry and Megan Markle for a quick selfie, Markle had to decline and responded, "We're not allowed to do selfies." Selfies are highly discouraged for multiple reasons, including that they take a decent amount of time to get through with numerous fans and can be a security risk. 

Selfies aren't the only rule royals must follow when engaging with fans! Additionally, royals are not allowed to sign autographs. This is mainly for their protection so that fans do not forge their signature in the future. 

They can't post about any political affiliations

One of the majorly strict rules the royal family is expected to follow is that they are not allowed to have or be vocal about any political views. This includes not being allowed to vote or being able to talk about politics with family, friends, or fans (via Popsugar). In addition, the royal family is expected to remain politically neutral and not become entangled in politics — especially online. 

The family's official website states that "As Head of State, The Queen has to remain strictly neutral with respect to political matters, unable to vote or stand for election, however, Her Majesty does have important ceremonial and formal roles in relation to the government of the U.K." Additionally, "It is considered unconstitutional for the Monarch to vote in an election." This explains why the royal family will never be seen posting about political affiliations on social media, speaking on politics, voting, or having a personal political opinion.

They can't take photos in certain locations

One of the most fun aspects of using social media platforms such as Instagram and TikTok is creating content in fun locations and posting videos and images in incredible destinations. However, for the royal family, there are rules for that, too! Although Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice are free to post whatever they want on their public social media platforms since they do not attend events on behalf of the royal family, they still get scolded from time to time about what they post on their channels. 

In an interview with UK Vogue in October 2018, Princess Eugenie opened up about how she got in trouble once for what she posted to her brand new Instagram account. "I recently got in trouble for posting a picture of Papa in a corridor of the palace that was off-limits to the public," she said. Whether in a location that is too formal or too private, these aspects still need to be considered when posting on social media as a royal. 

Creating sponsored content can be a bit tricky

When Lady Amelia Windsor, cousin of Prince Harry and Prince William, shared a sponsored post on her Instagram page, she left fans of the royal family very confused about whether they can post this type of content. In her post, Windsor took to her platform to share a picture of her in a dress with the caption, "Paid partnership with Michael Kors" (via Yahoo! News). However, if you are a royal family member, it is typically forbidden to receive and accept gifts. A statement from Kensington Palace regarding accepting gifts reads, "When gifts are accepted, the consent of the Member of the Royal Family should be contingent upon the enterprise undertaking not to exploit the gift for commercial purposes" (via W Magazine). 

For Lady Amelia Windsor, this rule can be bent. Windsor currently stands 38th in line for the throne, so rules such as accepting gifts are more likely to be broken without significant consequence for her and other royal members lower down the line. Lady Amelia Windsor plans a career in the fashion industry, so sponsored content from major fashion brands is a step in the right direction!

The royal family issued strict social media guidelines in 2019

To set fire against online trolls on their social media platforms, the royal family created a set of strong social media guidelines in 2019 that their followers are expected to follow. These are for whoever chooses to interact with the family across their high-profile Twitter and Instagram pages. The goal of these new rules, the family has said in a statement, is to create a "safe environment" for family fans to properly engage with one another. For example, comments should not contain spam, be offensive, promote hate or violence, be "off-topic, irrelevant or unintelligible," and promote different services. 

Additionally, on the official website of the royal family, it is requested that fans of the family show empathy towards others in the comments. "We ask that anyone engaging with our social media channels shows courtesy, kindness, and respect for all other members of our social media communities."

If you break the social media guidelines, this happens

Now we are sure you are wondering: How does the royal family plan on stopping their millions of followers or spam accounts from leaving unwanted comments on their posts? The royal family says on the official website of their social media guidelines that they have the right to "hide or delete comments" and block users who do not follow the new rules. "We also reserve the right to send any comments we deem appropriate to law enforcement authorities for investigation as we feel necessary or is required by law," the website further includes. Oh, okay! Not scary at all! 

Coincidentally, this set of rules occurred just months after the Duchess of Sussex and Duchess of Cambridge were attacked by internet trolls (via Cosmopolitan). According to Harper's Bazaar, royal correspondent Emily Nash stated that staff members of Kensington Palace were "spending hours each week moderating sexist and racist comments" that pertained to Meghan and Kate.