The Queen has called an all staff meeting in Buckingham Palace and across her residences today (4 May) which sparking numerous wild rumours online. This was not helped by the fact the Sun accidentally published an article claiming that Prince Phillip had passed away at the age of 95.
The newspaper briefly rolled out a holding piece headlined ‘Prince Philip dead at 95, how did the Duke of Edinburgh die, etc etc’ hours after the announcement as speculation of the prince’s health began to circulate on social media.
— Claire Phipps (@Claire_Phipps) May 4, 2017
To date, the purpose of the meeting has yet to be announced, although BBC royal correspondent Peter Hunt has underlined that there is “no cause for regarding the health of either the Queen or Prince Philip”.
The BBC understands there is no cause for concern regarding the health of either the Queen or Prince Philip.
— Peter Hunt (@BBCPeterHunt) May 4, 2017
The Sun unpublished the story after it was noticed, live for several minutes a spokesperson from the Sun tells The Drum. The story, although briefly live, helped contribute to a state of misinformation. Despite all the excitement the announcement merely underlined that Prince Philip will no longer carry out public engagements.
Social media also played its part in building the hype around the announcement.
1817: The world is controlled by the British Royal Family
— Laura Shortridge (@DiscordianKitty) May 4, 2017
— Julian Druker (@Julian5News) May 4, 2017
— Elliot Wagland (@elliotwagland) May 4, 2017
— Richard Gaisford (@richardgaisford) May 4, 2017
— Rhys Muldoon (@rhysam) May 4, 2017
According to my Twitter timeline, #buckinghampalace announcement is:
1. Voldemort's back
2. Wenger's out
3. Corgis unwell
— Dhruva Jaishankar (@d_jaishankar) May 4, 2017
It's going to be really boring like the Queen is moving her official residence, isn't it? #BuckinghamPalace
— Grant Tucker (@GrantTucker) May 4, 2017
This has been a lesson from #buckinghampalace in how to build speculation. I doubt that's what they wanted. Needed better handling
— Martin Lewis (@MartinSLewis) May 4, 2017