Prince William unveils Cyberbullying Taskforce action plan

Prince William unveils Cyberbullying Taskforce action plan

After about a year and a half of private meetings of The Royal Foundation’s Taskforce on the Prevention of Cyberbullying, which Prince William launched last year, they finally unveiled some information/plans for action yesterday, November 16.

Prince William Cyberbullying Taskforce speech Nov 2017 s
[Kensington Palace @KensingtonRoyal]

William and the Taskforce members met at Google London’s YouTube Space where William gave a speech about the Taskforce’s goals and plans of action.

    “For me, the issue of cyberbullying and its consequences are personal. My work as a HEMS pilot has exposed me to the tragedy of suicide and the despair felt by those who have been subjected to cruelty and abuse. Through my work on mental health, I have spent time getting to know parents and children for whom the impact of online bullying has been devastating. And as a parent myself, I understand the sense of loss and anger of those particular families who have lost children after they were the targets of campaigns of harassment. I feel a responsibility to do what I can to help.
    “I began work on the issue of cyberbullying a few years ago and as I explored it in more detail, I felt a growing sense of alarm. I came to realise what it meant for bullying – an age old problem – to be supercharged by the power of social media. New, exciting platforms that at their heart, want to help people make and maintain friendships, were allowing bullies to take their abuse beyond the traditional theatres of classrooms and playgrounds. They could now follow their targets home.
    “A new generation of young people – tech savvy, connected, and optimistic about the future – were encountering new social spaces without established standards of behaviour to guide them. And many parents and carers, who seek to make their homes a haven of safety, felt powerless to protect their children. And even worse, some had no idea about the suffering their children were experiencing from bullying that was coming through their phone or their laptop. My overall sense was that social media was in many ways an ungoverned space, where our children were fending for themselves. But as I looked into this issue more, I also gained a sense of optimism.
    “I saw the example of Lucy Alexander, who is with us today. Sadly Lucy lost her son Felix after he experienced terrible bullying online. In her grief she felt compelled to take action. She spoke out and challenged the technology sector to work together to help protect other children from experiencing what Felix had. And I also realised that while we were encountering new forms of bullying, technology was also openly revealing behaviour that had often been hidden from view in the past. I came to believe that if the tech sector was willing to work together, their powerful tools could actually help children to put respect and support for each other at the heart of the way they interact with their peers. My hope was that internet companies would see the potential to pool their knowledge and resources to create spaces online that were much safer for our children.
    “So I established the Cyberbullying Taskforce – through The Royal Foundation – to seize the opportunity that collaboration could bring. The Taskforce has brought together social media platforms and internet service providers with those organisations and individuals who strive to protect and support children and young people. And after a year and a half of hard work and frank discussions, we can today unveil a plan of action to protect children and encourage a new standard of behaviour online.
    “There are four major planks to our plan. First, the technology company members of the Taskforce have agreed to adopt new guidelines to improve the process for reporting bullying online, and to create clearer consequences for those who behave unacceptably. Second, the Taskforce is launching today a new, national campaign to educate children on how to behave with respect and kindness online. The campaign is being driven by the powerful reach of the industry members of the Taskforce. Third, a new programme will be piloted through Facebook and Snapchat which will see the NSPCC providing emotional support to children in need, as a result of online bullying. And finally, the companies and charities that have been part of the Taskforce, will continue to work together to provide consistent advice to parents and to continue to take feedback from children and young people as they develop their policies.
    “Through this process we have all been honest with each other. And of course I have been honest that I had hoped we might be able to go further. I hoped, for example, that the social media companies would agree to a form of standardisation around reporting and clear timelines for handling complaints. I also hoped that the tech companies might create a single, universal tool for children to report bullying when they see it or experience it regardless of which platform it happens on.
    “I am, however, encouraged that the BBC is looking at the potential for a tech solution along these lines and all I ask is that everyone keeps an open mind as the outcome of the BBC’s work, and other options, emerge in the coming months. There is a lot more that can be done.
    “I am proud that the Taskforce has generated a plan of action with some practical, industry-driven initiatives and I hope all of you are too. It is a big, important step in the right direction. It is my view that if this plan is implemented, the U.K. can become a world leader on tackling cyberbullying. Nowhere else has the sector come together and voluntarily agreed to take collective responsibility for tackling an issue like this rather than just promoting your own individual initiatives. And I am proud that listening to children and parents has been at the heart of our work. It has been their advice which has led us to this ambitious plan of action today.
    “Now the onus is on the people in this room and the organisations you are a part of. We have been working together for many months, but today is only the beginning. In implementing these plans, you have a chance to show that something special has happened here in the U.K., that the rest of the world can learn from. You have a chance to show what I know you all believe – that technology companies are serious about their social responsibilities. You have a chance to win the trust of today’s generation of parents, and to help them feel confident about the positive experience their children will have online. And, you have the opportunity to help children lead the way with respect and positivity to build the vibrant, exciting future that you all believe in.
    “To the children and young people here today, I want you to know that it is this hope for a positive future that has motivated everything we have done. I am always amazed by the savviness and creativity of your generation. I am excited about the world you are going to create and then lead in decades to come. And I hope the action plan we are announcing today can help you, in at least a small way, to embrace technology with confidence and optimism.”


As much as I want William, Kate, and Harry to express deeply personal reasons why they care so much about their mental health and anti-cyberbullying campaigns for my own selfish reasons (I want to have some sort of emotional connection to their involvement with these topics because I have suffered with this stuff myself), I think I need to let it go and accept that they either don’t have any personal experience with this stuff or they aren’t willing to share it publicly. Maybe William’s pilot experience really is the only reason he cares so much about these topics – in which case, that’s fine; not everyone needs a deeply emotional connection to a cause in order to care about it. Or maybe he just doesn’t feel comfortable sharing his personal experiences with the world – in which case, that’s fine; no one should feel obligated to share something they are uncomfortable sharing.

I am very interested in what the new guidelines are and when they will be released. I tried to find the new guidelines, but all of the social media sites already have code of conduct guidelines and ways to report bullying and support centers for if you are experiencing bullying, so I don’t know if the new guidelines have been released yet. And the new anti-bullying campaign’s website doesn’t have the guidelines on there. I am hoping more concrete actions, guidelines, etc come out of this Taskforce.

William also invited campaigners Lucy Alexander (who lost her son, Felix, to suicide) and Chloe Hine (who attempted suicide after experiencing cyberbullying) – who were also involved with the Taskforce – to Kensington Palace to hear about how cyberbullying has affected their lives. What Lucy and Chole shared is so relatable, and I wish we could have heard more from them. This from Lucy is spot on: “If you are in a negative space, that’s all you can see, and you look for the negativity”.

As part of the Taskforce’s rollout of their new plan of action, they launched a new anti-bullying campaign: Stop, Speak, Support. So now we know why the Royal Foundation trademarked the hashtag #StopSpeakSupport

You can view the campaign’s website (which is buggy) here. From the website:

    “The Stop, Speak, Support campaign has been created in response to 11-16 year olds saying that while they enjoy social media, games and online forums, that it is the only area of their lives that they feel does not have clear expectations or standards of behaviour they should all adhere to. Stop, Speak, Support aims to help young people spot cyberbullying and know what steps they can take to stop it happening and provide support to the person being bullied. The Stop, Speak, Support steps were created in partnership with a panel of young people through a series of focus groups and workshops.”

They also created this video outlining the steps to take if one sees bullying online. I’d love to know what actual young people think of this video: is this helpful, is this fun and engaging, is this cool (or whatever word young people are saying these days)?

Maybe it’s because I’m a bit too old for the demo the campaign is going for, but I think the video’s delivery method is trying too hard and is therefore not cool. Having said that, the message is a good one, and the three tips are helpful. And if the video does engage and connect with young people, that’s all that really matters since that’s what the campaign’s goal is.

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84 thoughts on “Prince William unveils Cyberbullying Taskforce action plan

  1. It’s a good cause, but I wonder if he just wants to control social media for his own purposes as a side benefit to all this. He already hates the press so I can see him wanting to cross the boundaries of free speech.

    One thing entirely missing is how the internet is a worldwide phenomenon and national boundaries are unenforceable. If the harassment is happening outside of the UK there isn’t much that can be done unless the country of origin also chooses to enforce things. And the worst offenders tend to be hired bots from Russia, where they can get away with so much more.

    1. Considering William is a bully himself… and would consider any criticism of himself bullying…

      It’s interesting how the media is framing this as William vs the evil meanie bullies and how great he is, as if the companies aren’t doing things to combat cyberbullying until William came around.

      Good message. WORST messenger.

        1. He’s called Harry stupid, mocked him in front of reporters. Stuff William has said about or to Kate which is rude and nasty. His behavior in general to other people–rude comments, and thinking he’s oh so funny for them. Incident with Daisy Ridley comes to mind, pretty much calling her ugly, then laughing about it… Other people can give more examples but these are the ones off he top of my head…

          The way they bully the press. Threaten lawsuits. Have special private meetings to reel in the reporters so they’ll suck up to them, and if you don’t tow the line, you are banned from covering them (and for these royal reporters, um, that’s their JOB).

          I think a lot of this is to curb criticism about him and Kate, especially; to him and he’s made this evident any criticism is bullying.

    2. I thought the UK-specific thing was a bit odd, too. I also found it odd that they were only focusing on young people. Because the internet and social media are not country nor age specific. Yes, school peers bullying each other is a massive problem, but adults bullying children is also a problem, and of course adults bully other adults online all the time. But I guess focusing an anti-bullying campaign on all of humanity in all of the world would be too broad a topic, so they had to focus on something specific. So they chose to focus on helping UK kids deal with their peers. Then maybe they’ll broaden their anti-bullying message later? I don’t know.

    3. The BRF exercises its power by bullying the government, press and law into submission; there is rarely anything but empty flattery for these people and certainly no honest, transparent assessment of their contribution. Laws are passed to protect the royals’ privacy because they demand it. Royals threaten to sue – William is particularly litigious. The BRF needs to clean its own house.

      I wish I knew what William actually referred to when he mentions ‘my work’. I’d like to know what is genuinely initiated and driven BY him and what is devised FOR him as PR strategy. Cynical, I know, but when William speaks of his EAAA work giving him insights, I wonder what they are since he was reportedly not at work on a regular basis.

      Any advances on cyber-bullying are welcome though it appears companies have policies in place. I’m not sure what this Taskforce offers that other initiatives do not, apart from having a prince front them. Also odd is the launch where the site and materials are not yet ready to go.

      I get the feeling that Heads Together is the template that other WKH initiatives intend to mimic. I still believe these are vehicles principally geared to showcase royals using others as props and others doing the hard yards.

      1. Every time he says “my work” I just roll my eyes because showing up five to ten times doesn’t constitute work. He has no idea what work means. So he has no credibility for me.

    4. I agree. Bullying is horrendous and cruel.

      Though I’m always wary of any platform that attempts to restrict free speech. Which is, of course, not the same as bullying. At all. A free exchange of ideas, free speech, is vital to any democracy. But is it necessary in a Monarchy?

      And will it be allowed in William’s Monarchy?

      Let’s hope so.

  2. KMR, I love all of your writing, but you may want to reconsider using the word “lame” in future articles. It has very ableist connotations. Lame means crippled, and it was probably nothing special you did to not be physically handicapped. Using ableist terms like lame, or even stupid or dumb is unprofessional.

    1. I will be honest and say I didn’t think of the word ‘lame’ that way and used it here as the slang I grew up with to mean ‘not cool’. But I understand your concern and I will correct myself.

      1. KMR, I am so awed for the way u responded without bashing back. You took someone’s critic, reviewed to see the point and humbly said you will correct it.
        What an accepting awesome response …

      2. Years ago I was reprimanded by a black woman for using the phrase ‘ a black mark against my name.’ Her point was that I was using the word black in a negative connotation and as she was described by society as black, she didn’t feel it appropriate. I was taken aback as I had never made that connection, I have also used the word lame, e.g., a lame excuse and never considered the connotations, so thank you to those people who are not afraid to speak up and ask us to consider the language we use.
        And well done KMR for your response.

    2. @Ashley, you’re being a bit over the top and dare I say, looking to be offended. Nowhere in this article did KMR insult or demean people with disabilities. Words can have more than meaning. For example, the word lame has more than one meaning. Lame doesn’t only mean crippled (<—By the way, as long as we're pointing out inappropriate, offensive terms to describe those with disabilities, that's definitely one).


      1. (of a person or animal) unable to walk normally because of an injury or illness affecting the leg or foot:
      "his horse went lame"
      synonyms: limping · hobbling · disabled · incapacitated · game
      2. (of an explanation or excuse) unconvincingly feeble:
      "it was a lame statement and there was no excusing his behavior"
      synonyms: feeble · weak · thin · flimsy · poor · sorry · unconvincing · implausible ·

      KMR's use of the word lame is in the context of the second definition, which is not offensive. If you are going to criticize something, make sure you do so in the appropriate context.

      1. I agree @Cherry.

        Soon, we will have no language left and no way to speak to one another. We will be left grunting and making hand gestures. Until that is, someone grunts that they are offended by your grunting.

        And then we will be left with silence.

        Here’s a question. Do you believe that those who have been injured or otherwise lost their limbs, or ability to walk, do you think they would prefer to be able to walk? To have hands and use them? And not to be disabled?

        Another way to view the use of ‘lame’ as an adjective describing that which is unpleasant or unfortunate -perhaps it is simply a human way of acknowledging their very real pain.

        Acknowledging that the pain of losing your ability to walk is very ‘unfortunate’ indeed.

        By refusing to include a recognition of their pain into everyday language and thus to give it the due recognition and empathy it deserves -this is to render their pain invisible. To refuse to see them, their pain, or the struggle they must endure daily.

        So not only are they disabled, not only do they struggle to walk, but now everyone must ignore their lived experience, wipe it away, and make their daily reality, invisible?

        That I will not do.


        To refuse to see those suffering and in pain, and to call it such, is lame.

        (apologies for going off topic).

  3. I just wish William cared about anything or anyone other than himself. All of this seems to be an attempt to make him relevant and like some hero when he’s done very little in his life in way of accomplishments. Using credit from other people or creating these useless taskforces that do nothing but make him seem relevant and like he has done something. He always has that smug attitude of being better than anyone, everyone, and too good to show up for a thing. Disinterested. He can’t even fake it.

    1. He left out the experience of his wife.Of course, it would not be her wish that he speaks of her own negative experiences in childhood,I understand this.
      But was Kate not also bullied during her school-time?

      1. The bullying stories are I think fiction. A lot of them were about how Kate was a boarder, was made fun of, blah-blah–she never boarded at school, not like William did. Teachers and such talked about how she wasn’t bullied but got in trouble for mooning boys..

        1. As a devil’s advocate: Would Kate’s teachers actually know if Kate was bullied? I was bullied a lot and I would bet that none of my teachers ever knew. If they did, they never said anything to me about it.

          1. Perhaps not. I do recall reading that other girls and teachers–when Kate was engaged–saying nothing happened, and a lot of the stories were rubbish because they imply she boarded at Downe House when she didn’t. I can go googling!

            My teachers knew but just did nothing about it, or blamed me for it.

          2. I agree about the boarding part. But another devil’s advocate: If Kate had been bullied, and the teachers knew and did nothing, then the teachers and school would have a very good reason for claiming Kate was never bullied because they wouldn’t want to tarnish their reputation or risk a lawsuit from someone.

          3. Ellie, I am sympathetic that the teachers blamed you. I burst into tears once and ran to the toilets. The teacher asked me what the others would think of me? Um I am upset. Another person said I deserved being bullied because I was grumpy in the mornings. Which is clearly my fault. Because everyone is super perky in the morning and so I clearly deserved being stabbed with a pen. I still have the mark on my skin. The girl who did it said I stabbed myself which the doctor said was impossible to do. To be fair, Birdy I would not cross Pippa. Pippa comes across as a very tough cookie.

          4. Maybe it was wrongly phrased KMR. But has she no friends from Downe House that she is still in contact with? What about her Marlborough friends. Were they just useful to introduce her to William? I couldn’t reply to you KMR, below.

          5. Eh. I don’t have friends from my elementary school days, and rarely speak to anyone from high school. I don’t necessarily think it’s nefarious if Kate didn’t keep in touch with her friends from Downe or Marlborough.

            One more devil’s advocate thing I want to throw into the discussion about Kate’s bullying claims: Many, many people don’t realize or own the fact that they bullied other people. Many, many people either don’t understand or recognize that their actions would be considered bullying by the people they bullied, or they don’t want to admit to themselves that they in fact bullied other people. So it’s entirely possible that the girls Kate went to school with would say that Kate was never bullied because either they don’t recognize that they were bullies or they don’t want to admit that they were bullies and therefore lied about not being bullies.

            I also want to point out that just because Kate mooned boys doesn’t mean she wasn’t also bullied.

            I’m not saying that Kate’s bullying claims are true, but I am also not saying they are untrue. Because people have a negative bias toward Kate, we tend to disbelieve Kate and believe the people who say Kate is lying. But I just want to point out here that there are many possibilities in this situation and just because Kate’s old school acquaintances and teachers said she wasn’t bullied, doesn’t mean Kate lied about being bullied. As none of us were actually there, we did not see the kid’s actions and did not feel what Kate felt during that time. Kate may have been bullied, and she may have mooned boys, and her old school acquaintances and teachers may think she wasn’t bullied. All three of those things may be true.

          1. She didn’t board at Downe where she was supposedly bullied so badly she left Marlborough.

            Herazeus if you’re here please correct me but I know you’ve posted about this too!

          2. Downe House have also denied that there was ever any record of Kate being bullied there. I’ve had this conversation on here before and the whole issue of Kate’s alleged bullying doesn’t stack up. For some reason I have it to mind that Kate weekly boarded at Downe House.

          3. To play devil’ advocate as well putting poo was it on Kate’s bed showed that the pupils disliked Kate. Kate must have done something to deserve that. Not being mean but why else would they do it as it is rather extreme behaviour.

          4. “Kate must have done something to deserve that”

            Not necessarily. Kids don’t need a legitimate, logical reason to be a-holes to other kids. Bullies will pick any BS reason to bully others, even something as innocuous as hair color, for example.

          5. I have never ever heard that story about someone leaving poo on Kate’s bed. That is just hideous and that kind of behaviour would not be tolerated in any British school, without sounding snobby, and especially in a school like Downe House which turns out well bred ladies. I used to play Lacrosse against Downe House and the kind of girls that go there or any British Boarding school would find that kind of behaviour vulgar beyond words.

            BTW Marlborough is in the middle of nowhere, literally miles from from the nearest cities of Bath, Bristol and Swindon. You don’t have much choice but to board there unless you live in Wiltshire.

            Downe House is much easier to be a weekly boarder as it’s very commutable from London and Home Counties but most don’t or didn’t around Kate’s time there as Boarding School tends to be all or nothing especially if you’re sporty as all the fixtures are at weekends. Probably 5% of the total Boarding intake would be weekly boarding and it’s very isolating as you miss so much of the social / sporting activity that weekends in Boarding school revolve around. It would be one sure fire way to isolate yourself from the group.

          6. I don’t think that is a problem. But who or whom does Kate have as friends apart from William. It is as my cousin says putting all eggs in one basket instead of working on friendships. William’s friends seem to be her friends as well. So when they split it was easier to get back together. I wish it would be confirmed about the bullying. One bad action does not make someone a bully. I think if something happens I apologise and move on. Forgiveness and moving on is part of the healing process. Yes actions can be mean or rude. Maturity has a lot to do with it as well. It depends on the context. A lot of Kate’s context is static.

  4. I’m an adult now,of course and adults are often a bit snobby about the emotional rollercoasters of teenagers.I force myself to think back to these times and yes, it was deeply emotional and often a disturbing time.
    My believe is,.though, that cyberbulling just exists as long as there are children,teenagers and adults out there who are the ugliest kind of people, now live their poor life out there in the Internet and their bad behaviour.
    I think.this should change in reality, not Internet, the respect for other people.Therefore, we wouldn’t need such guidlines.But of course, it will never come to.this.
    As long as the world will stay this way, I hope that sensitive people, especially children and teenagers, have a person to talk to who understand and help.And I wish for them that they learn to be strong and understand the behaviour of these bullies, to pity them for their poor soul-life or to ignore them.
    It’s of course a good cause by William, but it starts in real life.Bullies will always be there.
    I hope children will learn to defend themselves.

    1. I fully remember how emotional and turbulent being a kid and teenager was. It was awful. I agree with you that the internet only heightens aspects of our personalities that already exist. Cyberbullying only exists because we, as humans, are bullies, and when given that change, with the anonymity of the internet, we turn into hate-filled online bullies. The only true way to correct cyberbullying is to correct our bullying problems in real life. If we, as humans, did not have the desire or capacity to bully others, then cyberbullying wouldn’t be an issue.

      1. I’m so glad I grew up before social media. I was very active on the internet as a prepubescent kid and a teenager and it wasn’t nearly so bad, but the stories I’ve heard of my cousins growing up–a generation behind me–are horrifying..

        I don’t know what can happen though. It’s so prevalent because it’s human nature especially when you aren’t looking at someone when you ‘talk’ to them. Easier to be awful and horrendous.

      2. I was bullied terribly at high school, so badly in my third year (age 14) I pretty much truanted (didn’t attend) for the final two years completely ruining my exams.
        The effect has stayed with me all my life, I’m now 55, even after lots of counselling and even in patient psychiatric care.
        My life would have been completely different I think if the bullying had been properly dealt with by my school and parents.
        I was bullied because I was clever and a shot not because I was unlikable or mean to others. I was quite shy but I did have friends. Bullying is horrid and not enough is done to deal with it. So I welcome this project. To be honest if my bullies had had access to social media to bully me outside of school I dread to think of the consequences.

  5. I don’t like the way he’s already criticising the big companies for not doing enough. Let’s at least agree you have to start somewhere and give them credit for improving. I suspect the NSPCC line is a bigger better Childline , which is NSPCC funded.

    The UK only bit is a worry. I hope they look to broaden this out.

    And why talk about publishing guidelines and then not have them publicly available.. please get CQ involved in this sort of detail!!

    Off topic very cute pictures of CP Vics gorgeous children have been published.

  6. I can’t help myself, but Wiliam never seems really deep into his charity topics to me. If he would have hundreds of causes like the senior royals that would be fine, because no one could be truly dedicatetd to this amount. But he tries to set up a profil and sorry, to say- his actions just don’t cut it. Maybe he is dedicated but then he and his PR team should be able to make me believe it. Damn it, even if he just picked it because it seemed as a good PR move and isn’t interested at all-good PR work could make the public believe he is (which would be as good as if he was truly interested).
    On another hand: has anybody seen the new photos the Swedes released of Estelle and Oscar? My cold heart is melting, you guys! She looks so happy, normal, et ease and a little bit mischief. Now, that is great PR work.

  7. For 18 months of “hard work” (his words not mine) this seems like a pretty shallow campaign especially considering those who have participated. The hashtag to my knowledge didn’t even trend once yesterday and this was on launch day! How do they think they will get young people to actually “use” these guidelines. It’s nice on paper, but thenit says they personaly don’t provide any counselling and refer you to another partner charity. A kid that gets bullied needs an easy way to get help, not having to go from one place to another. IMO.

  8. I have to give credit to William for making more effort the last few months. He is doing more visits and seems to be interacting directly with kids which is great to see. He’s had some touching moments too, whereas he used to seem quite detached. I still think he needs to prioritize better – rugby should come second to events surrounding veterans, for example.

    I’m going to wait and see how committed he ends up being to this initiative before I decide if it’s a good program or if it was just a hot topic he wanted to highlight and then toss aside for the next keen idea.

    1. “I’m going to wait and see how committed he ends up being to this initiative before I decide if it’s a good program or if it was just a hot topic he wanted to highlight and then toss aside for the next keen idea.”

      Ann: +1

  9. On The Royal Foundation’s website, there is link for Stop Speak Support (on the front page). Once you click on the link, there is a PDF (View The Action Plan>) that apparently outlines the guidelines for the program. Which, like you pointed out is not giving us anything new. Google, and social media websites already have very similar guidelines and programs set in place to help combat cyberbullying.

    Again, the royals are bringing nothing new. Like with their latest initiative for Heads Together. The text messaging services and apps. have been around for a couple of years. So, again they are giving us anything that isn’t already in place.

    Heads Together and Stop Speak Support just seem to be ways for the royals to get credit for work that they did not earn. The actual businesses and charities have been working on combating mental health and cyberbullying (which is still considered a “new” problem) long before the royals decided to get involved. Yet, the royals are getting all of the credit for things that they had no business in.

    It’s all getting really old and very annoying.


    1. Billie, I completely agree with your take on this. The HT campaign provides lots of visibility for the royals – lots of rushing around parroting key phrases over and over – giving the impression of active participation. All the same elements are there: meeting with the royal at the head while others (experts) sit around obediently; a speech written by an anonymous someone; interview(s) with ordinary people; visits to a place where people sit obediently in a circle listening to the royal; puffed up PR about what the royal is doing though no indication of what that actually is in tin tacks, apart from the photo ops, eludes me.

      1. I hope 2018 brings a few new phrases when the boring trio discusses HT. I am so tired of hearing the phrase about starting a conversation. If they don’t change the statements in 2018, it will sound like they have not done anything to move the public consciousness forward concerning mental health. Heaven forbid these three could let a whole year go by without making a difference.

    2. I’ve yet to see anything innovative or groundbreaking come from these three and their royal foundation initiatives.

      Right now I’m betting that one of the foundation’s main hidden purposes of this taskforce will be to support and promote the royal’s new digital startup company.

      Forgive me for ranting here now–I was away when this startup was announced–but for the foundation to take £2 million to invest (I’m assuming from the HT campaign donations) as capital for this new business and not give that money to their charitable partners seems very underhanded to me.

    3. Weird that they would put that pdf on the Royal Foundation website and not on the actual campaign’s website.

      1. THEORY: Maybe The Royal Foundation website doesn’t get that much traffic. Maybe they thought everyone would just take Prince William at his word, instead of reading the PDF and really critiquing (good or bad) his “Action Plan”.

        In recent years, particularly with Harry’s success of the Invictus Games, Sentebale Endeavour Fund, Coach Core and the Full Effect Program, Prince William and Kate Middleton are trying to make themselves relevant in the Royal Foundation (ie: Heads Together and Cyberbullying Taskforce). The programs that were garnering the most attention were Harry’s.

        I mean if you look at the Foundation’s website, a lot of the programs haven’t had support in years: M-PACT Plus, ARK, Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge and Hiring Our Heroes (when William and Kate visited the US, in 2011). I mean their Foundation is a joke, no offense to Harry — who actually has put in a lot of work in his projects, but it is. And a lot, and I mean a lot, of people think so.

    4. “Heads Together and Stop Speak Support just seem to be ways for the royals to get credit for work that they did not earn. ”


      There are ways for royals to get involved, do something new or help an existing organization or concept. Look what Prince Charles has done with The Prince’s Trust, or Harry with Sentebale or Invictus. Those are the biggies off the top of my head.

      William talks often of ‘my work,’ so does Kate. WHAT work?

  10. Wow, what a sterile environment for that meeting of minds! The vast white table and those little water bottles set around it! The differing shades of muted colored drapes in the background.
    Not exactly a place that encourages creativity, if you ask me. The meeting looked so forced and controlled!

    The speech went on and on before finally getting to what the plans were and then the plans were so sketchy, I lost my ability to care at all.

    Agree with KMR, it would have been more compelling to hear some personal experience with bullying from William, but I guess I can understand why he would not be forthcoming. I do believe that his work with the Air Ambulance gave him an interest in helping others, but this campaign does not seem to offer more than buzz words.

    I would have liked to hear more from the mother who lost her son and the young woman who attempted suicide. Both were impacted by cyberbullying.

    William appeared to engage more with the young people. so credit where credit is due. However, I am not sure what this campaign will really be doing. It’s HeadsTogether all over again. I’m so sleepy this morning, I can hardly post any words. This campaign did little to wake me up. I need more coffee. Lots!

    1. It took several attempts to get past all of the me, myself and I’s: “my work,” “I feel,” “I began,” “I explored,” “I established” etc etc etc. Does he really not understand how this comes across?

  11. I tried to read the whole speech but after a sentence in the first paragraph pissed me off, all I could see was word salad and diarrhea mouth blending together. Here is the sentence that set me off and angered me:

    “And as a parent myself, I understand the sense of loss and anger of those particular families who have lost children after they were the targets of campaigns of harassment.”

    What the actual f*ck?! He does not understand the families who’ve lost children because he has never (thankfully) gone through that experience! Is he a parent? Yup. Is he a parents who has lost a child? Absolutely not! Talk to the parents who’ve lost their children via other means, not just bullying. Try and learn how difficult the days leading up to their death still haunt them, or how the realization that, whenever their birthday comes up, their child would be blank age but they aren’t because they’re “Forever (insert age)”.

    I’m just dumbfounded at that phrasing because it just seems so insensitive. I’m sorry for veering off topic today but this has me upset.

    1. Thought the very same thing, Kimothy. I couldn’t believe he actually said that. I actually re-read it several times because I thought surely he meant “I can’t begin to understand,” but no. My dislike for him just continues to grow.

      1. Yup. Also, yesterday would’ve been my donor, Dulce’s 30th birthday but she is Forever 8 years old which probably adds to my pissed off reaction towards William though he still shouldn’t have said it.

        1. I knew this was where you were coming from Kimothy. But remember her family have the very slight comfort of knowing that you have done so well because of their astonishing generosity. That must bring them just a tiny bit of comfort especially now having met you.

        2. Ah, Kimothy, I appreciate your anger.
          The pain the parents experience from a loss of a child is something nobody should have to endure. William surely must be thankful that he and his wife have not had to endure such heartache. I just have come to the point that he and Kate don’t get many things. And, insensitivity is something that grates on so many who do have a kind and caring nature.

          He tries, but does he succeed? I don’t think so. Not at this point, anyway. It is infuriating, I agaee.

          I focus on you and your caring ways and the caring ways of so many others here and in my life who truly make a difference in the world.

    2. I know!!!! That sentence confuses the crap out of me. William may be a parent, but he doesn’t understand losing a child because he has never lost a child. I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt in my mind thinking maybe he meant he’s a parent and doesn’t want his kids bullied. But still, his phrasing there was so odd.

    3. He and Kate routinely use that phrase, “as a parent” I don’t know if it’s the only way they think they can relate or show sympathy but it always irks me and usually has nothing to do with what their trying to relate to. I mean, they weren’t parents would they not be able the show sympathy?
      I think only someone else who has lost a child can truly emphasize with that scenario. Parenthood also doesn’t have the exclusivity on recognizing someone else’s pain, suffering and loss. I don’ have kids but as a human who can recognize someone else in pain, I can sympathize and be there for them.

      1. +1 Your last sentence kind of reminds me of my reaction to the men who claim they care about women because they have daughters (I’m using this example just because it’s been in the public consciousness a lot recently). When I read people claiming that, I keep thinking: Uh, women are still humans whether you, as a man, have a daughter or not. Not everyone needs to have a daughter to recognize that women are fellow humans and to treat them with the same respect.

        I get that William and Kate claim they care more now that they are parents, but not everyone needs to be a parent to care about children being bullied, etc.

        1. Normally, people have sympathy for each other,parents or not.
          But it is also true that you totally change as a parent.You fear for someone more than for yourself.And that is something that just parents can feel. You can fear for your mother,grandmother,brother, best friend,…but your own child is something completley different, you are the protector of your child and responsible for its wellbeing.
          I can relate to William in this case. I fear everyday for my children since the day and even before(pregnancy) they were born and it will last until my last day.
          It’s really quite emotional, this topic, and William probably means he can imagine how horrible it must be to lose your children, especially in such sensless acts.

          1. William cares about his own children but there is no evidence he actually cares about anyone else’s children any more than the random person on the street. Parents develop an instinct for their own kids (well most anyway) but it in no way means they care for a random strange child any more than someone with no kids.

        2. That phrase from men when they say that now they care about how women are treated becasue they have a female child, irks me, too. What about their wives? Did they ever have feelings for them? Their moms? Grandmothers, aunts, etc. Geez

          Thank God I never heard my husband say those words. He’d be toast!

      2. “I think only someone else who has lost a child can truly emphasize with that scenario. Parenthood also doesn’t have the exclusivity on recognizing someone else’s pain, suffering and loss. I don’ have kids but as a human who can recognize someone else in pain, I can sympathize and be there for them.’

        Sarah +1

          1. Bereavement of a parent is completely different from that of a child. It reverses the natural order of things and most parents who experience this have a hard time ever recovering. His speech was poorly worded here. He really doesn’t know the pain of losing a child.

      3. As a parent–ugh I hate that. I’m a parent. It doesn’t change my outlook or make my response towards things any different! It signifies that as a parent somehow you have the upper hand and some moral authority here because oh, you have kids!

        It is just William making it about himself because he is not capable imo of true empathy or true compassion. It’s me me me me me how does this affect me me me me Charlotte and elephants me me me.

    4. I think the word William should’ve said was “empathize”. He doesn’t understand (And hope he never has to) what it’s like to bury your own child. And for him to claim that understanding, reeks of patronizing and insincere feeling. Would’ve been better to say that now that he is a parent, he understands even more that parents should never have to lose their children to untimely and preventable deaths like online bullying. We know WK are as shallow as a kiddie pool, but isn’t there someone in their staff who can catch these kind of nuances?

    1. I’m guessing it’s either a fundraising dinner or a ‘thank you’ type dinner for the people who work for the charities they support. They did a fundraising dinner around this time last year, too.

    2. I wonder when we are going to see Kate again? Her calendar has been empty with nothing new announced yet. I guess she is done for the rest of November?

      Supposedly there was a photographer there last night at the ‘gala’. I wonder if they will release any photos

        1. Thanks Queen Lauri, when I checked another Kate site a few days ago there was nothing on her schedule. I am glad to see something was added 🙂

        1. Could we have a post on Jecca Craig please. I realise it is not a priority and you have real life which must come first but it would be fascinating to know more about Jecca’s charity work.

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