Royal Family Bans Satirical Coverage Of The Big Wedding

from the they're-british,-right? dept

You may have heard that there’s some sort of big royal wedding going on in the UK in the near future. There’s been a fair bit of press coverage about it all, apparently. And, of course, there will be even more coverage of the event itself. Down in Australia, comedy/satire troupe The Chaser boys had been planning to cover the wedding in their typically satirical manner, but the royal family has officially stated that video from the event may not be used for satire. Specifically, the rules are that the footage, which is being offered to a ton of TV stations, cannot be used “in any drama, comedy, satirical or similar entertainment program or content.” And I thought the Brits liked satire…

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Comments on “Royal Family Bans Satirical Coverage Of The Big Wedding”

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39 Comments
william (profile) says:

Hold on. Can you actually limit fair use by contract? I suppose the stations has signed a contract saying they won’t do that, else they probably won’t be allowed to broadcast this.

But how about a 3rd party taking the footage off the broadcast and do a non-commercial satire?

BTW, does the British has some law against making fun of the monarchy like in Thailand?

TheStupidOne says:

Re: Re: Re:

Lucky for us Yanks we can do all the satire we want to and the royals that we successfully rebelled against oh so long ago can’t do a gosh darn thing about it.

I’m inspired to provide some satirical coverage, but then I’d have to actually watch it. Plus I’m not nearly funny enough to get the attention it would deserve …

Nebulon (profile) says:

Re: Re:

As far as I know there’s no law against making fun of the monarchy, in fact in some parts of the UK it’s encouraged. The UK is pretty open minded as far as satire goes, if you’ve ever seen Yes Minister or Have I Got News For You you’ll know what I mean.

As far as limiting the use of television footage there is precedent, the proceedings of the House of Commons were only televised on the grounds that the footage not be used for satire. Whether a third party could take this footage and then use it for a spoof as far as I know has never been tested but might make an interesting YouTube project for some enterprising soul. Be interesting to see them formulate a take down notice for that one.

Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile) says:

Move along, folks...

There’s nothing to satirize here.

“Two relative unknowns were wedded recently in an understated and sparsely attended ceremony open only to close friends and family. The new couple signed the marriage certificate at the courthouse before piling into their ’87 Grand Prix to take a quick celebratory drive to the conference room of the nearest Days Inn for the reception.

A local DJ took requests before handing over the controls to the best man, who was both bigger and drunker than the unfortunate entertainer. Shortly after 9:30 pm, the new couple drifted off to their room while the best man wandered around trying in vain to a.) score some more drink tickets and b.) challenge various part members to an arm wrestling match.

Just a day like any other (give or take a wedding) in the lives of the British royals.”

[Copies of the unedited wedding footage are available on Megaupload. Contains some swearing and adult situations. And about 10 minutes of the camera man trying to get his cat to play the piano.]

John Doe says:

Can someone educate me on the state of royalty in England?

Why is there still a king/queen/prince/princess in England? Do they have any role in government? Where do they get their money; is it inherited from centuries of rule? They need to be stripped of their crown and their finances and the money returned to the people.

The other thing I don’t understand is why any American would be infatuated with England’s royalty. We took this land from them 200+ years ago so why do we care about them now? I sure don’t.

nebulon82 (profile) says:

Re: Can someone educate me on the state of royalty in England?

Funding for the Royal Family comes in part from large estates (land) owned, most notably the Duchy of Lancaster and the Duchy of Cornwall. This land is traditionally owned by the King/Queen and the current heir. In addition the civil list is a payment from the government but it doesn’t really add up to that much (just under?8 million for 2010 according to Wikipedia, thats maybe $10 million I’m not sure), it’s certainly way less than the two Duchies make.

The Queen holds a ceremonial place in government, signing bills into law, opening Parliament etc. Technically she is still empowered to select a Prime Minister, but the reality on the ground is she picks whoever can command a majority in the House of Commons, so in effect the PM is chosen by elected MPs, not the Queen. The Queen also does a lot of diplomatic stuff as she is head of state, and don’t forget all the time posing for pictures that end up on currency and stamps almost everywhere.

I’m a republican (in the UK sense not the US) so I’m all for the dissolution of the monarchy, but as for stripping the wealth of the Crown it gets problematic as to who owns what? Dot he Duchies belong to the state or the royal family? Where do you draw the line in protecting private property? It would be a complicated issue should it ever arrise.

It’s probably not going to do so for the lifetime of the Queen as she’s quite popular and seems to know what she’s doing. If Charles were King it may be a different story given that he apparently doesn’t understand that the best thing he can do to avoid provoking a constitutional crisis is to shut the hell up and stop interfering in things like agricultural policy and planning applications. Who knows, maybe the monarchy is unlikely to finish out the century, this is certainly my preference.

As for why the US loves the royal family as much as it does, your guess is as good as mine. Might be some kind of reality TV/celbutard culture thing, might be the fact that the US is such a young country that the populace craves ‘venerable’ institutions.

Either way, this whole wedding thing is a giant pain in the arse because most of the freaking shops will be shut tomorrow.

Scubloke says:

The comedy/ satire troupe in question is not called ‘The Chaser Boys’. I don’t know if the actual troupe has a name, but they started out in the 90s publishing a satirical tabloid which was called ‘The Chaser’. They have since done several TV series/ specials called ‘The Chaser does…(Insert topic here)”. Previous exploits include penetrating security at an APEC meeting by posing as the Canadian delegation, even though Canada is not part of APEC.

mike allen (profile) says:

the reason given is that it is a religious ceremony. Not that that matters much these days. As to liking satire the royal family actually like satire spitting image for example.Now i think of it did they not do a royal command performance or meet the queen. and before i get yelled at i will state i would like this country to be a republic not a monarchy.

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