Prince William Learned This Important Lesson About the Press from Princess Diana

Prince William learned from watching his late mother, Princess Diana, deal with the press that being too open can backfire. As a result, when he started giving solo press conferences in college, he made a point to give reporters a story but not to say too much to them.

The Duke And Duchess Of Cambridge And Prince Harry Visit The White Garden In Kensington Palace
(Image credit: Max Mumby/Indigo)

Being royal comes with a lot of perks, but it also has its drawbacks, the most notable of which is the overwhelming lack of privacy. Prince William struggled with the idea of the press covering his every move in college and, thankfully, the royal family was able to make a deal with British reporters: Leave Will alone when he's on campus and we'll give you special access to him at other times.

The deal also applied to Will's gap year, during which he was able to travel the world and experience life without the fear of constantly being pursued by the press. But, when he returned from his travels and prepared to start college, it was time for Will to live up to his half of the bargain and appear at his first solo press conference.

In her book Kate: The Future Queen, royal expert and biographer Katie Nicholl explains that Will's approach to the press had been shaped by his mother, the late Princess Diana, who died in a car crash while trying to escape the lenses of paparazzi in Paris.

Will's skill with the press has only increased as he's gotten older, of course, but he still follows the "rule" he learned from Diana and never says too much.

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Weekend Editor at Cosmopolitan

Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with over 10 years of professional experience covering entertainment of all genres, from new movie and TV releases to nostalgia, and celebrity news. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.