Prince Harry has moved against social media in a recently-released interview in which he accused online platforms of contributing to stoke a crisis of hate, health and truth. The Duke of Sussex spoke about the role the internet has played in the organisation of the storming of the Capitol which took place earlier this month.
Prince Harry spoke about the riots as a “literal attack on democracy”.
The Duke’s remarks have been perceived by a few social media users as an unwanted “interference” carried out by a member of a foreign royal family.
One wrote: “I do believe that there was a certain little war that was won by the Americans against the British Monarchy about 250 yrs ago.
“Hmmm… One would think that Americans don’t want interference from foreign royals.”
Another Twitter user replied to this comment, saying: “I do believe that you’re correct. There are enough talking heads on TV.”
A third social media user said it was “astonishing” to read a prince of the United Kingdom to speak about a domestic crisis.
They said: “Astonishing to see a foreign visitor in the US publicly commenting on a domestic matter in US politics and public life, particularly as a prince.”
Other social media users defended Prince Harry’s right to comment on the riots at the US Capitol.
One said: “He’s not a visitor! He’s now a resident and a taxpayer. So he gets a voice!”
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This response prompted another Twitter user to ironically speak about Prince Harry’s titles – which he has retained after Megxit.
They said: “That’s great to read. So that means he has relinquished his titles and is now like us a commoner and will also like us be travelling in cattle class on any flights he takes then.”
A recent poll carried out by Express.co.uk showed the majority of voters have not deemed appropriate the remarks made by Prince Harry on the recent riots in Washington.
Other Twitter users and fans of the Sussexes believe Prince Harry’s comments can’t be described as an “interference” but rather an observation made by a person who now lives and work in the US.
One wrote: “His son will grow up there, it’s very important to him… and why shouldn’t he speak about it, believe me, the whole world is”.
Another said: “There’s a law preventing visitors to comment? A prince can comment too and he is not representing the Queen or UK.
“Prince is not a function, it’s a born title. Ignoramus!”
A third added: “The whole world commented on what the whole world saw.
“He lives there now, pays taxes, he can comment on domestic issues.”
In his remarks on the danger presented by misinformation and how it can easily spread on social media, Prince Harry didn’t just speak about the recent riots in Washington but also mentioned political issues in other countries.
Asked by Fast Company whether tech giants should have a say on who gets to use their products, Harry said: “We have seen time and again what happens when the real-world cost of misinformation is disregarded.
“There is no way to downplay this. There was a literal attack on democracy in the United States, organised on social media, which is an issue of violent extremism.
“It is widely acknowledged that social media played a role in the genocide in Myanmar and was used as a vehicle to incite violence against the Rohingya people, which is a human rights issue.
“And in Brazil, social media provided a conduit for misinformation which ultimately brought destruction to the Amazon, which is an environmental and global health issue.
“In a way, taking a predominately hands-off approach to problems for so long is itself an exercise in power.”