BBC responds to complaints over its ‘excessive and insensitive’ Kate Middleton cancer coverage

The BBC is defending its coverage of Kate Middleton’s cancer diagnosis, which some critics have perceived as “excessive and insensitive.”

“Our coverage reflected the significance of this story and the outpouring of support for the princess from around the globe,” the British media outlet argued in a statement Friday, per the Hollywood Reporter.

“We explained to our audience what was known about Catherine’s condition, but did not speculate on details that had not been made public.”

The BBC said they received backlash over their coverage of Kate Middleton’s cancer diagnosis. Chris Jackson/WPA Pool/Shutterstock
Viewer complaints reportedly said the coverage was “excessive and insensitive.” Chris Jackson/WPA Pool/Shutterstock

Execs behind the news organization said that while they “examined the intense speculation there had been in the preceding weeks about the princess’s health,” they also reported on her “request for privacy.”

“We always give careful consideration to the editorial decisions we make,” the BBC added, noting, “Our reporting made clear that this is a difficult time for the princess and the rest of the Royal Family.”

The media outlet concluded, doubling down, “We have been mindful at all times to approach our coverage with sensitivity.” Page Six has also reached out to the BBC.

The BBC defended its coverage, however. Geoff Robinson/Shutterstock
“Our coverage reflected the significance of this story and the outpouring of support,” the BBC said. AFP via Getty Images

Prior to the British broadcasting channel’s statement, viewers sounded off online about the network’s content.

“So kate has cancer, I wish her and her family all the best, as I would anybody that is ill. Why do we need wall to wall news coverage of it? Its like the BBC eta all are rubbing their hands over this,” one person previously wrote on X on March 23.

Another added at the time, “Princess Kate has asked for privacy after being forced to reveal her cancer diagnosis. The BBC is giving this wall to wall coverage. Sending reporters to Windsor, Kensington Palace, etc.This is so disrespectful to Kate & typical of the BBC.”

Middleton announced in March she had cancer. BBC Studios
She made the revelation in a video recorded by BBC Studios. BBC Studios

On March 22, Middleton. announced in a video — actually recorded by BBC Studios from the gardens of Windsor — that she had secretly been battling cancer.

The Princess of Wales, 42, shared at the time that she had found out about her diagnosis after running a series of tests following her abdominal surgery in January.

She explained that she and husband Prince William decided to wait to share her health struggles with the public until their children — Prince George, 10, Princess Charlotte, 8, and Prince Louis, 5 — had time to “understand and process the news.”

Middleton said she found out about her diagnosis after her abdominal surgery in January. Ian Vogler/WPA Pool/Shutterstock
She and William waited to tell the public because of their kids. Prince of Wales/Kensington Palac / MEGA

Middleton then concluded, “We hope that you will understand that, as a family, we now need some time, space and privacy while I complete my treatment.

“My work has always brought me a deep sense of joy and I look forward to being back when I am able, but for now I must focus on making a full recovery.”


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Since the release of the video, the BBC — and several other media outlets — has published numerous stories about the princess and any updates pertaining to her health.

Some of the coverage online, at least, runs the gamut from the outpouring of support the Princess of Wales has received to how Russian disinformation may be linked to conspiracies about her.

Middleton asked for privacy for her and her family while she undergoes treatment. Ben Evans/Huw Evans/Shutterstock
Middleton has not made any more public appearances since announcing her cancer news. WireImage

Author Valentine Low previously commented on the “pressure” Middleton felt to open up about her issues.

“It was too much to bear in the end, they had to say something,” the “Courtiers: Intrigue, Ambition, and the Power Players Behind the House of Windsor” writer exclusively told us last month.

“They probably thought they couldn’t possibly continue saying nothing, you can’t keep doing that.”