Charlie Richardson, 19, known on TikTok as notaroyalexpert, has worked tirelessly over the past few weeks to update his online audience on the Queen’s recent appearances, as well as dispel rumors that she has died and is now a CGI hologram.
Her recent edits include footage of the Duchess of Cambridge and other royals shaking hands at a garden party at Buckingham Palace to the soundtrack of Lizzo’s dancefloor anthem About Damn Time. Another shows an avatar of the queen revolving around Abba’s dancing queen. Naturally, he is already planning what he will upload on Her Majesty’s momentous Platinum Jubilee Day.
Richardson is among a new generation of royal TikTokers who are gaining hundreds of thousands of followers on the app, underscoring the online appetite for updates and analysis of the British monarchy, particularly among young people public.
TikTokers are, for the most part, positive about the royal family. “After I started posting about royalty, my followers grew rapidly — more than I could imagine,” Richardson said. Now the English student has over 216,000.
“The majority of the reactions I have following my publications are positive, which is very good since it is mainly young people on the application. There are, of course, negative comments, but they will always be there, so I just try to stay positive and talk about what interests me.
Amanda Matta is the person behind matta_of_fact, a TikTok channel with 687,000 followers. “I would describe my channel as a mix of royal commentary, royal history, royal fashion – whatever appeals to me,” she said.
Unlike Richardson, whose videos are complementary about the family, Matta describes himself as “the most negative royal TikToker”. The 27-year-old, based in Pennsylvania, said: “I don’t shy away from criticizing the royal family. I think you have to look at them holistically and put things into context, and what their actions mean for them. marginalized communities, even if they [the marginalised] are expected to be part of their fold across the Commonwealth.
Matta began posting about the royal family after the Duchess of Sussex’s interview with Oprah Winfrey in March 2021. Among the many revelations made by Meghan Markle and Prince Harry was an alleged incident where a member of the family had raised concerns about their son’s skin color.
The first TikToker video addressed a conspiracy theory that the Duke of Cambridge was the one who made the comments. Since then, Matta has posted both positive (animal-loving Queen Elizabeth and Harry and Meghan’s fairy tale wedding moments) and slightly more critical (Will and Kate’s recent failed tour of the Caribbean). “There’s always a lively discussion in my comments,” she said.
“I try to be somewhere in the middle when it comes to opinions on the royal family – neither for nor against, but I recognize that I am more critical than many people on TikTok. I think it’s probably because I’m American,” she said. Nonetheless, family was always a “cultural touchstone” for her growing up.
Within this emerging online scene are some extremely specialized TikTokers like Rosie Harte, creator of The Royal Wardrobe, a channel dissecting royal fashion throughout history.
The 20-year-old from Bristol spends half her time uploading TikTok videos, having racked up 329,000 followers, and the other half studying art history. “The history of the royal family is so eye-catching and colorful. When you talk about royal fashion, you’re talking about the most expensive and ridiculous sequined fashion you can imagine.
“My followers are like magpies. If you put a tiara at the start of a video, it’s definitely going to work well. She plans to do a special video next week on the Queen’s Jubilee looks throughout history.
His unique TikTok angle led to a book deal with Headline Publishing. The Royal Wardrobe will appear next year, and continues its work on the history of royal fashion.
Aside from an interest in the royal family, the three TikTokers were excited about the platinum jubilee and its impact on young people and are united in the way they sound at the historic event: Harte, Richardson and Matta all plan to celebrate with garden parties and lots of friends and family around.
“This is not the first jubilee the royals are celebrating, but the last was 10 years ago when TikTok didn’t exist and other social media platforms were in their infancy,” said Matta. “Young people really won’t have seen a spectacle to this degree outside of a royal wedding, so I think it’s a really interesting time to get a sense of true majesty, no pun intended.”