The Guardian reports that Buckingham Palace is demanding UK broadcasters remove clips of recent royal footage, including almost all their coverage of Queen Elizabeth II's funeral and memorial.
The BBC, ITV and Sky News have been given until Monday to produce a 60-minute compilation of clips they would like to keep from ceremonial events held across the 10 days of mourning for the Queen. The royal household will then consider whether to veto any proposed inclusions. Once the process is complete, the vast majority of other footage from ceremonial events will then be taken out of circulation. Any news outlets wishing to use unapproved pieces of footage would have to apply to the royal family on a case-by-case basis, even for material that has already been broadcast to tens of millions of people.
"It's completely illogical and doesn't make sense," said one journalist with knowledge of the negotiations. "We're furious that they're trying to restrict how people can relive sombre but important historic events."
The clips are everywhere and the only possible outcome is more people seeing them.
It isn't clear from The Guardian's story how the palace intends to enforce this or why UK media is bound to comply. Not does it say what happens if the UK media outlets refuse to comply. Sources cry censorship, but from the coverage it appears the only punishment for not complying is displeasure.
If that's it, the real dynamic here is that they're all access journalists dependent on the palace for content, wriggling on the hooks of their own unwritten NDAs. Let's hear more about this WhatsApp group where palace flacks give major broadcasters their marching orders.
The Guardian has previously revealed that the palace vetoed several clips from the Queen's memorial services and banned them from being reused in news reports and social media clips. Royal staff had a WhatsApp group including senior executives from the BBC, ITV and Sky News which they used to control which footage could be used. A member of the royal household would send a message every five minutes either approving or refusing the use of the previous block of video.