Daily Archives: September 18, 2015

Kate Middleton and Prince William to take the Throne as Queen Elizabeth Retires


Rumors made rounds last week that Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-reigning monarch, is about to make another history by handing down the throne to Prince William and Kate Middleton, skipping Prince Charles.

OK! Magazine has reported that Queen Elizabeth II is giving up the throne after 63 years and has chosen to pass it down to the 33-year-old grandson instead of the 66-year-old Prince Charles who has been next in line for all his life.

But while skipping one generation might be possible because the Queen is a powerful woman, Celeb Dirty Laundry said the Queen doesn’t have the power to handpick the next King and Queen, unless of course Prince Charles willingly stepped down. And that’s what exactly happened, according to OK! Magazine, which made her wife, Camilla Parker-Bowles, upset.

According to OK! Magazine, Prince Charles was initially outraged, but soon he saw the sense of it. A royal insider reportedly told the magazine, “It’s been a tough pill to swallow for Charles. He’s spent his whole life waiting to succeed his mother. He initially flew into a rage, ranting that the crown is rightfully his. But then he began to see her way of thinking.”

The source further said that the Queen’s choice is practical because the young couple are “simply far more beloved than Charles ever was” and that it is what the people want–for William and Kate to be King and Queen.

The Duke and Duchess were stunned, according to the report. They never believe something like this will happen. OK! Magazine said the coronation, estimated to cost $1 billion, will take place at Westminster Abbey possible shortly after the Queen’s 90th birthday next April.

But Gossip Cop said OK! Magazine fabricated the story and that a Buckingham spokesperson said it is not true–Queen Elizabeth II is not stepping down to make William and Kate the next King and Queen of England. The source exclusively told Gossip Cop that no such claim has been confirmed, nor is there any plan for Prince William to bypass Prince Charles to be the next king.

Meanwhile, Kate Middleton is set to receive a royal honor from the Queen-the Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II, one of the highest honors she can bestow upon a female family member. The honor, which will be given in October, is a diamond-encrusted brooch featuring an ivory plaque of the Queen wearing the Order of the Garter, Vanity Fair reported.

A ‘Dislike’ Button on Facebook Will Only Encourage More Slacktivism


When we first started going out, Himself taught me a bit of TS Eliot I didn’t know: “Throw your arms around me – Aint you glad you found me.” I’ve always loved that line, and quoted it back at him down the years. It speaks of the simple joy of being held by someone you are lucky to have and who knows that they are lucky to have you.

What’s not to like? Well, if you are Dame Helen Mirren, quite a lot apparently. “It annoys me,” Dame Helen says, “when I see men with an arm slung around their girlfriend’s shoulders. It’s like ownership.”

Eh? What senseless salvo is this in the gender wars, what seeking out of sexist slights where none is intended? How on earth could you look at a loved-up young couple walking down the street, entwined in their own private rapture, and think something so sour?

How do you show your disdain for something? Or register your firm agreement with an issue that matters a lot to you?

A few of you will still put pen to paper. Others will call somebody, depending on your proximity to the issue. And others still might take to the streets if the matter warrants public protest or similar.

But these days, more often than not, most will simply resort to a tweet, a Facebook “like”, or some other piece of digital ephemera. And then that’s it. Case closed. You’ve done your bit.

Just in case you were feeling constrained by the digital choices on offer, however, Facebook wunderkind Mark Zuckerberg has got something up his sleeve. He is hoping to bring some nuance to the internet with a new “dislike” button on Facebook.

It’s not expected to be called “dislike”, as the young multibillionaire says he doesn’t want to encourage people to be mean to each other (has he actually been on the internet lately?). Instead, he wants to develop a button to help people “express empathy”.

Well, one billion Facebook users are waiting, fingers primed. Mr Zuckerberg has known of the “like” button’s limited range for years, but seemingly it’s been too tough a nut to crack. Two years ago, a developer let slip that the company was working on a “sympathise” button, but nothing materialised.

Facebook is now trying to catch up, because the social network has changed dramatically since it first crashed on to our screens 11 years ago. No longer solely somewhere for its members to post drunken photos, humble brags and cute photos of their family, it is morphing into a political beast.

One look at the site’s most talked-about topics from 2014 – the Scottish referendum and the Gaza conflict – proves what a fight club the behemoth has become. My Facebook feed really wasn’t a healthy place to hang out last year. I looked at some of my chums in a whole new light.

And that’s just it. By unleashing a “dislike” button into the mix, Mr Zuckerberg is only going to toxify an increasingly fractious atmosphere among “friends”.

While people having rows could make the social network more addictive for some, it also fuels another depressing and unhealthy trend: armchair activism, better known as “slacktivism”.

I asked you at the beginning of this column how you make your voice heard – properly heard. For all too many, a ”dislike button” will offer another illusion of action, and yet it couldn’t be further from the real world. All it really offers is just another distraction and the means to shout into a digital echo chamber.

Yesterday (Wednesday) morning, I spoke to one of the impassioned leaders of Femen, the topless feminist protest group currently making headlines after two of their activists stormed the stage of an Islamic conference in Paris. Femen’s approach is divisive, for sure. But no one could accuse these women of resting on their laurels. Ironically, they found out about the event on Facebook after people began voicing their disquiet about some of the speakers.

But instead of reaching for a digital button, they put their phones down and did something about it offline. How many of us can truly say the same?


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