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Royal family publish new guidelines to tackle trolls on social media

They're taking a stand against cyberbullying

Members of the royal family are taking a stand against cyberbullying and have asked their online followers to interact with each other in a respectful, courteous and kind manner. A new set of guidelines has been published which followers of the Queen's social media account (The Royal Family), Prince Charles and Camilla's account (Clarence House), and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's joint account (Kensington Palace) must adhere to.

The guidelines were published on the royal family's official website on Monday, to "help create a safe environment" where "our community can engage safely in debate and is free to make comments, questions and suggestions".

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The palace has received hateful comments towards Kate and Meghan

However, the palace asks that comments "must not contain spam, be defamatory of any person, deceive others, be obscene, offensive, threatening, abusive, hateful, inflammatory or promote sexually explicit material or violence". Comments must also not "promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age," and must not be "off-topic, irrelevant or unintelligible". They must also not "contain any advertising or promote any services".

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The guidelines were released just weeks after Kensington Palace admitted they spend hours moderating negative comments on their social media accounts. In January, HELLO! exclusively revealed that palace staff are forced to moderate sexist and racist comments directed at Kate and Meghan in particular. A handful made violent threats towards the two women, while others targeted 'rival' fans for vicious personal abuse.

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New guidelines have been published by all royal family accounts

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A source told HELLO! magazine: "The palace has always monitored comments but it's a hugely time-consuming thing. They can block certain words, but some of it is quite serious. Over the course of last year, with hundreds of thousands of comments, there were two or three that were violent threats. You can delete and report and block people and the police have options around particular people. It's something you have to manage because there's no other way to control it."

The news prompted HELLO! to launch our #HelloToKindness campaign in January, championing positivity online. The campaign has since been supported by David and Victoria Beckham, One Direction's Liam Payne, and Storm and Ronan Keating among other international stars.

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