Prince William: Facebook fugitive

Excited by the news Prince William has his own Facebook profile? Don't be -- you're not welcome.

It was a brief moment of royal openness, now swiftly abandoned - if you haven't already perused Prince William's Facebook entry then forget it.

After a flurry of media interest as it emerged the heir-but-one had signed up to the public networking site, the electronic portals have come crashing down.

Browsers, while unable to view the prince's full profile, had been able to see a self-posted picture of William in ski hat and goggles, as well as pictures posted by his 44 listed Facebook friends.

These included Alexandra Aitken, the daughter of once-jailed Conservative MP Jonathan Aitken, and Jack Kidd, the polo-playing brother of model Jodie Kidd.

This morning, however, the sole profile viewable under William Wales revealed a blank face to the world, with a question mark in place of a picture. Browsers were not allowed to see the person's pictures or view their friends.

It is unlikely even to be the same person, with the real William - or an Internet-savvy flunkey - having most probably adjusted various profile settings so it can only be found by approved friends and not just any Facebook browser.

A search for William Wales does indeed come up with two results, but only the one is shown.

Undeterred, would-be friends, not to mention young ladies keen to take over the vacancy left by Kate Middleton, have been busy sending "pokes" -- a Facebook facility alerting another member you're thinking of them - to the William Wales who is listed.

As is the way with these things, as of last night a new Facebook group has emerged, "I poked Prince William", with 61 members and counting, not to mention a message from one sceptic telling people they are almost certainly pestering the wrong Mr Wales.

Brent Johnson from Calgary has posted an even more succinct message to the group: "I think you should stop stalking the prince and go back to fixing your pathetic little life."


Peter Walker

The GuardianTramp

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