On March 16, Dr. Shana MacDonald (Communication Arts) spoke with Joe Scarpelli on Global News about the recent social media controversy surrounding Kate Middleton Princess of Wales. Concern was sparked when a heavily edited photo of Middleton and her children was retracted by multiple news outlets. Dr. MacDonald unpacked why exactly Middleton had been surrounded by much public and online scrutiny in what she called “a right place, right time” situation due to the slow celebrity news cycle and the intensity of international relations.  

Dr. MacDonald pointed to how the Princess of Wales is the face of the new rebranding of the monarchy, and that people paid attention to this issue because they are looking for distraction from current issues.  

In response to the doctored photo, Kate stated that she had edited the photo herself. Dr. MacDonald said this was a “surprising twist because generally, the Palace’s PR team is really strong in getting messaging across in ways that are going to be believed and digested by the public.” 

The interview concluded with Dr. MacDonald commenting on the current lack of trust in public news sources. Due to the emergence of new technologies like artificial intelligence, MacDonald’s feels this distrust indicates that people are thinking critically about the information they are consuming.