20 years ago next year Princess Diana died. Two billion people watched her funeral. When the news broke people were in the streets hugging and crying, a friend had died. A friend they had never met. The odd thing was, we all had a weird feeling that we knew her. Maybe not so weird, every single day we saw her face. Every. Single. Day. I know for me I saw her face (in the paper and read about her or saw her on the TV) more than I did my own family. Every day since 1980 when she first appeared on the public scene we heard and saw stories and news about her. That must do something to the psyche. Imprinting an image on your brain every day for 17 years, why wouldn’t your brain tell you that you know that person?
Although Sky news started its 24 hr news channel in 1989, very few people were subscribing. The BBC 24 hour news started in 1997. Most likely people actually started watching these channels more in the early 2000s.
So back in 1997 Princess Diana’s death was announced as breaking news on the television, by interrupting a normal broadcast. Announced on the radio and then the following day in the daily paper. And the reaction of the British public was extraordinary. The news was announced and then silent until the next bulletin, news slot or newspaper edition.
Fast forward to today: