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Pippa can’t pick and choose with the paparazzi

2012 will no doubt be a big year for Pippa Middleton; the release of her first book, the probability of several high profile TV interviews, oh and pursing a legal battle against the surge in attention from some of the UK press.

At 23, Ms. Middleton could be seen as relatively young to be releasing her first book, yet her signature was the subject of a fierce competition. The end result of which was a publishing deal of around £400,000 and a release date for this year. Moreover, in the States, another six figure bidding war is taking place as US chat show heavy-weights, Barbara Walters and Oprah Winfrey, compete for Pippa’s first sit down interview in America when she eventually tours her book.

Thrust into the limelight last April when her sister, Kate, married Prince William, the ongoings of Pippa Middleton’s life have continued to dominate column inches ever since. It now appears that the continuing exposure is beginning to take its toll on the darling of the UK media. However, the question remains as to whether taking advantage of one aspect of her new found fame really enables Pippa to complain about the negatives of a rising public profile.

Regardless of these high-profile career moves, Ms Middleton has sought advice from royal lawyers over injunctions against the ever increasing attention from the paparazzi. The Daily Mail alone say they receive up to four hundred photographs a day from the dozen photographers camped outside her house, trying to catch a glimpse. Ms Middleton says her warnings and threats of law suits are out of desperation, after suffering stress as a direct result of the photographers actions whose overwhelming attention is bordering on harassment.

Although her previous writing experience is limited, Ms. Middleton is insistent that she does not want to be seen as making money from her royal connections. However, the release of her book, which will include tips on being the perfect hostess and reflect on her experiences as a professional party-planner happens to coincides with the same year as the Queen’s diamond jubilee. This will obviously be a period of heightened interest in the royal family with increased demand for royal souvenirs and merchandise; the perfect time to boost book sales. Ultimately, no matter what the content, the reason it will sell well is the same reason Pippa continues to be the subject of press and it’s ridiculous to think otherwise. The interest and speculation surrounding her life is due to her high-profile connections. So how do these privacy complaints tie in with her commercial dealings?  Appearing on prime time TV to promote her book is a publicity move that would never have been possible without her royal association, making it difficult to to view her as a victim of her situation.

Pippa Middleton may be seizing the opportunity given to her, but in a similar situation we all would.  She is not inviting the press to report on her life and is essentially a victim of a reignited interest in the Royal family after the overwhelming popularity of the Royal wedding. Would Pippa have received a book deal without being the future Queen of England’s sister? Obviously not. However, whilst I do take issue with the fact that it appears Pippa may only want publicity when it suits her, this does not give the media the right to continue to feed the public’s appetite. The daily coverage of her simply going about mundane activities is wholly unjustified.

She has gained from a higher profile, but ultimately she is accidental celebrity, propelled into fame by virtue of her relations. She is not a self-made celebrity, she is the sister of someone who is famous and is thus entitled to her private life. Moreover, Pippa Middleton does not receive the nearly level of security as her sister and is thus more open to exploitation by the the press. They fuel her status and public profile by publishing stories and pictures of her without any real reason.

The press  know there is an eager audience of people fascinated by the activities of the Royal family, and sadly for Pippa Middleton she is loosing out on her right for privacy by being a media-appointed celebrity and a subject of press hype. Ultimately Pippa Middleton has every justification to pursuit her privacy complaints.

By Jo Faulkner

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