While Closer magazine, and editor Laurence Pleau, are enjoying their 15 minutes of fame having published those photos of Kate (Duchess of Cambridge) they may be missing a more serious outcome than a court case.
In the publishing world getting sued can add kudos, especially when it’s the first time the Palace has sued a French title. And can you really blame trashy titles like Closer publishing photos like this?
Of course you might ask what were the security guards doing to allow a photographer to photograph her from a nearby road and what if it’d been a gun not a camera? Only a few weeks ago Harry’s security guards came under fire for allowing a girl to enter his room and snap the prince in his birthday suit!
So is all publicity good publicity? St Jame’s Palace doesn’t think so.
But then why shouldn’t our modern day royals act like the celebrities they hang out with. After all, the media today treats them like any other star and snapping a woman topless is really no big deal anymore. After all, in France it’s an everyday site on the beach. Kate’s biggest worry might be in 10 years when she’s put on the pounds, Closer loves to publish pics of celebrities looking plump and unattractive.
While Closer magazine remains defiant there’s a bigger problem that could have not just the British but the French government ending up less than happy with the magazine.
Browsing through just a few feedback comments from news articles online, the reaction of some is “don’t buy French products”, “boycott all things French”. This reflects how some of the general public feel. The Brits love their royals, unlike the French, and as this is a snub on our royal family Brits are only naturally going to feel less friendly towards the French and their brands.
A number of years ago a similar thing happened in America and people organised a boycott of French products. One product, French’s Mustard had to run ads telling American’s they were actually not French.
In the UK we buy a lot of French brands – Activa, AXA, Cartier, Courvoisier, Cow & Gate which is owned by Danone, Dior, EDF, Elle, Evian, Garnier, Givenchy, Hennessy, Hermes, Hygena, L’Occitane en Provence, Lacoste, L’Oreal, Louis Vuitton, Michelin, Moet & Chandon, Perrier, Président chesses, Rachel’s yoghurt (now French owned), Remmy Martin, Saint Agur, Total Petroleum, Veolia, Veuve Clicquot, Volvic, Yves Saint Laurent . Several car brands – Citroen, Peugeot and Renault. Plus numerous wines.
Closer UK magazine is actually owned by German publishers Bauer, while Closer France is owned by Italian media company Mondadori.
So if the idea of a boycott takes off, and social media could make it easily happen, and UK shoppers did stop buying French brands, it could have an impact upon the French economy. And given theses bad economic times, it could make Closer magazine just as unpopular with the French too.
But with the strictest privacy laws in Europe in France, the biggest problem for Laurence Pieau (and the photographers involved in taking the pictures) is the possibility of spending a year in a French prison cell and a fine of 45,000 euros.