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Prince William warns against speaking to "the media" in resurfaced clip

Prince William’s warning about the consequences of speaking to “the media” has gone viral after a resurfaced clip from a 2017 documentary was uploaded to TikTok.

The royal says that, while it may be easy to dispute negative stories by speaking to the press, once you’ve “opened” that door “you can never close it again.” It takes on particular weight in the days after his brother, Prince Harry, gave his latest interview.

The viral video, uploaded to TikTok on Sunday by user lampshadebond, has been viewed over 280,000 times. On Saturday, Harry was interviewed by mental-health expert Dr. Gabor Maté to promote his memoir, Save.

Harry has faced criticism in recent months for disclosing personal and private information about his family members, including William, in his Netflix docuseries, his record-breaking memoir and interviews promoting it.

William’s comments shown in the TikTok clip were filmed in 2017 for the documentary on his mother Diana, 7 Days. They were made in reference to the late princess’ treatment by the media.

In an extended part of the documentary, made in collaboration with both William and Harry to mark the 20th anniversary of Diana’s death, the elder prince spoke about coping with the negative press intrusion faced by his mother.

“I can understand, sometimes having been in those situations when you feel incredibly desperate, and it’s very unfair and, you know, things are being said that aren’t true,” William said. “The easiest thing is to say, or to go to the media yourself, or you know, open that door. But once you’ve opened it, you can never close it again.”

William repeated this metaphor in a second documentary fronted by himself and Harry in 2017, titled Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy. He said:

“I sadly remember most of the time she [Diana] ever cried about anything was to do with press intrusion. Harry and I, you know, we lived through that and one lesson I have learned is, you never let them in too far because it’s very difficult to get them back out again. You’ve got to maintain a barrier and a boundary because if you cross it, if both sides cross it, a lot of pain and problems can come from it.”

The viral TikTok clip has received more than 7,000 likes and 600 comments, many of which have praised the prince.

“The irony is, he was talking about his mother & the press years ago,” the clip is captioned.

“William has wisdom, integrity and class,” wrote one TikTok user. “Wise words,” commented another, with a further user posting: “Listen to your bro Harry!!!!!”

The alternative to William’s position on media engagement was discussed by Harry in his interview with Dr. Gabor Maté over the weekend. The prince asked about the fallout from his memoir Save. It became the fastest-selling non-fiction book of all time, in part due to pre-publication publicity about its many bombshells. However, Harry said that getting his own narrative out into the world was freeing.

“Once the book came out, I felt incredibly free,” he said. “I felt a huge weight off my shoulders.”

James Crawford-Smith is Newsweek’s royal reporter based in London. You can find him on Twitter at @jrcrawfordsmith and read his stories on Newsweek’s The Royals Facebook page.

Do you have a question about King Charles III, William and Kate, Meghan and Harry or their family that you would like our experienced royal correspondents to answer? Email We’d love to hear from you.

Prince William’s warning about the consequences of speaking to “the media” has gone viral after a resurfaced clip from a 2017 documentary was uploaded to TikTok.

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