BBC issues apology to Prince Harry over “seriously offensive” neo-Nazi image
The BBC has issued an apology to Prince Harry after they published a confronting image of him from a neo-Nazi social media group without warning.
The news outlet came under fire after they released an image showing the royal with a gun to his head, with text calling him a “race traitor”. Shortly after, a complaint was lodged amid safety concerns for the royal family.
Speaking to The Guardian, a spokesperson raised “serious security concerns” for the Duke and “caused his family great distress specifically while his wife was nearly five months pregnant”.
The image was shared on a far-right platform, and showed blood splattered over the father-of-one. The creator placed a swastika over the 35-year-old and captioned it: “See ya later race traitor. #racetraitor.”
The BBC originally rejected the complaint, justifying the use of the image as public interest. But they’ve now changed their tune, issuing an apology for failing to warn the Duke and Duchess of Sussex before the report was published.
The media corporation said it should have considered the impact of publishing “seriously offensive material”.
“We need to be vigilant in balancing the impact on individuals against the wider good which may be served by publication,” read the statement.
Addressing a letter to Harry, the BBC said it was working to strengthen its guidance on the use of possibly offensive content.
Harry’s spokesperson responded: “His Royal Highness welcomes the letter from the BBC relation to the shocking image published by BBC News last year as part of a report on the activities of a British new-Nazi group with links in the US.
“His Royal Highness raised the issue with Ofcom about the rebroadcasting of this racist image due to his concerns that hateful and dangerous propaganda had been spread globally by the world’s most important public service broadcaster. Due to the credibility of the BBC, their choice to publicise this material created an open door for all other media to reproduce it.”
The statement then went on to say that Harry was completely against the decision of the image being published in the first place.