Individual Responsibility

The Royal CoupleAmongst the photos of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visiting the idyllic Solomon Islands, the royal couple’s legal team are proceeding with an action, in the French courts, against the photographer who took the photos of Kate, sunbathing topless.

With reports that these photos have now also been published in Ireland, I started to wonder where the blame for this type of personal invasion really lies. Is it with the photographer, who stands to earn a huge amount of money selling the images? Does it lie with the publishers, who pay them for the pictures, knowing all too well that they will sell many, many more copies of their paper? Or does it lie with us, the people who willingly pay for the chance to see some fuzzy titillating images?

I suspect that all three would find it difficult to defend themselves in a court of law. But without any demand for the final product, would the paper pay the huge sums demanded by the photographer? If there were no financial gain to be had, would the photographer go to all the trouble to snoop on the Royal couple?

In the week that the Liverpool fans who died in the Hillsborough disaster finally received justice, it is very relevant to note that it is still not possible to buy a copy of the Sun newspaper in Liverpool. The damning headline in that paper, on the day after Hillsborough, so outraged the people of the city, that it has never recovered from the shame.

If only we could, collectively, put that level of pressure on publishers, or better still on society as a whole, the moral fibre might be improved. Now I realise that morals are a very personal measure of our own behaviour, but stooping to the lowest common denominator cannot be in the interest of any of us.

Whilst not trying to be a modern version of Mary Whitehouse, I do think that if we all took a little more notice of our own individual responsibility in these matters, the world would be a far better place to live.

As an interesting footnote, it appears that the photographer is, in fact, a woman.

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