Duchess Meghan got a copy of ‘Finding Freedom’ before it was published

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex attend Trooping the Colour for the official birthday of Queen Elizabeth II

The Duchess of Sussex will attempt to get a summary judgment in her lawsuit against the Mail/Mail on Sunday. That attempt will happen in January, and Meghan and Harry are no longer scheduled to fly in for any January trial or hearings, because the trial was pushed back to a year from now. A summary judgment would mean that the judge would just shut down the case and say that Meghan’s copyright was infringed and that the Mail is full of sh-t. I don’t think that will happen, mostly because the judge in the case has already widened the Mail’s defense so now they can argue that Meghan spilled all the tea to Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand for Finding Freedom. So… expect a million headlines about Finding Freedom all over again. Like this one, where we learn when Meghan first got her hands on a copy of FF.

Meghan Markle received a copy of Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family before it was published.

In court documents, Meghan’s lawyers revealed: “The Claimant’s US publicist was only given a copy of the Book immediately before its serialization, by which time it had already been printed. It was therefore too late for the Claimant to ask for any changes to be made, so that the pleaded inference was false, and there was (accordingly) no invitation to suggest amendments to the text, nor any request for such amendments.”

The revelation comes as the mystery over who briefed Finding Freedom authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand has become a central part of the court battle, now scheduled for next year.

As The Daily Beast has reported, the book contains incredibly intimate information of specific conversations and moments in Harry and Meghan’s lives—information that, if it did not come from them, came from sources amazingly close to them at those moments. The latest statement from Meghan’s lawyer does not clarify if she or Harry had anything direct or indirect to do with the book’s preparation (focusing instead on her reportedly not changing anything in it close to publication), and aims to put more distance between Meghan and the material in the book.

[From The Daily Beast]

Yeah, I believe that. No one ever said that Meghan and Harry got approval over everything written in FF, or that they were editing it or checking it line-by-line for inaccuracies or whatever. The claim most journalists and royal reporters have made is that FF is clearly the product of extensive off-the-record briefings and interviews with Harry and Meghan, the result of which was an enormously sympathetic portrayal.

Again, Meghan is arguing (legally) that she didn’t give any official interviews to Scobie and Durand. But as the Daily Beast’s Royalist column pointed out in a separate piece, “Harry and Meghan are quick to say whenever they feel their privacy has been invaded by the media. Finding Freedom, a biography that is incredibly sympathetic to the couple…is so intimate and invasive it reports speech as spoken and feelings as felt in the immediate moment in multiple situations. But it has attracted not a word of criticism from the couple. There have been no legal threats, yet Finding Freedom arguably invades their privacy much more than any newspaper article.” Except that’s not really why Meghan sued the Mail! She’s suing them because they published only PARTS of her letter AND they misrepresented it. She’s not (solely) making an argument about privacy. Anyway, it’s just another reminder that now that the Mail gets to “use” Finding Freedom in their defense, it’s going to get stupidly complicated.


Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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23 Responses to “Duchess Meghan got a copy of ‘Finding Freedom’ before it was published”

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  1. Wiglet Watcher says:

    This is dumb. The letter had a copyright and the DM never got approval.

  2. Becks1 says:

    Well, they didn’t complain about Brothers at War as far as I’m aware, or Lady Colin Campbell’s book, right? so if not complaining about a book means its true, then William has a lot to answer for in Brothers at War.

    • Love says:

      Exactly. All those books had “intimate conversations” too.

      I’m so tired of people using the “yoga pose” as truth. When I read that part, it seemed like the biggest fan fic I ever saw! It’s not hard to imagine that Meg would be doing yoga on holiday with a sunrise in the background. Based on her insta pics, that’s her vibe. I can’t stand these people

  3. Amy Bee says:

    There have been several books written about meghan and harry and they have never sued or complained about invasion of privacy. Her family and former best friend have sold photos to the daily mail she never complained. So why are they expected to sue or complain about finding freedom?

  4. Louise177 says:

    I don’t understand the argument that personal details means they were involved. All biographies have personal details. Nobody said William and Kate was involved with Battle of Brothers.

  5. ABritGuest says:

    A silly argument. This year alone there’s been that KP intimate memoir book, Royals at war, Lady CC’s book, FF, Brothers at war, Meghan misunderstood. Sure all these books claimed to have insights of her thoughts & conversations. They haven’t sued over any of these.

    Then during her time as a working royal there have been hundreds of thousands of articles. Her relatives, former friends& associates have been interviewed& her pictures& cards sold. That actor Simon Rex claimed he was paid to say they had hooked up when apparently they were only friendly. Her dad did a whole documentary about her where I’m sure he spilled all types of tea about her.

    But Harry & Meghan have only sued over Cotswold helicopter pictures& videos, Meghan & Archie Vancouver picture, Archie & Doria LA picture, Meghan’s letter to her father & Harry’s phone hacking.

    So the argument that they would have sued if not involved in FF doesn’t really work.

    • BnLurkN4eva says:

      Great you did a better job listing the types of things they choose to sue over and those they don’t. They obviously understand that they are public figures and books will be written about them, lots of them going forward.

  6. Myra says:

    That’s a dumb argument from the Daily Beast. The details in the book are second hand information at best so we cannot determine if they are factual. Moreover, we have no idea who the authors’ sources are so we cannot determine credibility either.

    In contrast, Meghan’s letter is signed by her, handwritten and is confirmed to be her’s by all parties. Its contents include details about her private life such as the relationship with her father and her personal feelings and thoughts. That’s an invasion of privacy as would publishing someone’s journal.

    I would not classify the sharing of second hand information as an invasion of privacy, more as libel or defamation if false. As the contents in the book are not malicious why would Meghan sue?

  7. MymomcallsmeKnightingale says:

    So we’re back to let’s write about Meghan instead of getting to the bottom of William’s shenanigans from the gutter trash that is the BM.Meghan wants nothing to do with these non human stunted in growth people but yet they can’t take their lips off her cl*t….like these demons are obsessed with Rachel when they have a whole equally stunted in growth monarch to write about.Baby girl has been through hell and back but came out stronger and now thanks to these dunces along with the dunce monarchy;she gives 0 fux….lmao.

    • Yvette says:

      I keep waiting for the British public at large to catch on to the fact that the press, with Royal Family approval, uses the Sussexes as scapegoats in the press anything one of the ‘favorite’ Royals get in trouble. After “Battle of Brothers” and the recent fawning books hating on the Sussexes and lifting William and Kate on a pedestal with loads ‘they feel’ and ‘they thought’ and ‘they said’ comments, there is no substance in the DM’s claim that the Sussexes were involved in writing “Finding Freedom.”

  8. Marivic says:

    I hope the judge is not biased and influenced by the Royal Family and the British media. Meghan deserves a favorable and fair judgment.

    • BnLurkN4eva says:

      Yes, she does deserve to have this case settled in her favor because the law is clear and it was broken in this case, hence the lawsuit.

      Thanks to the writers of this site for the royal distraction, the election stuff is killing me and I still fear that something could go wrong that leaves us stuck with that human in the white house another 4 years, which I honestly can’t take.

    • Yvette says:

      @Marivic … “I hope the judge is not biased and influenced by the Royal Family and the British media.”

      Unfortunately, I believe he is. Sir David Warby is the High Court Judge in the Queen’s Bench Division (whatever that means) who ruled against Meghan in favor of the newspaper back in June 2020. He is the Judge who dismissed Meghan’s and struck out of the case her claim that the paper influenced and manipulated her father. This Judge also dismissed Meghan’s claim in her case that the paper has a malicious agenda against her because he felt it was frivolous and ‘irrelevant’ to her case. Yet, he doesn’t find the MOS’s claim that Meghan and Harry helped write “Finding Freedom’ is credible and not ‘frivolous’ at all.

      This is the same Judge who just pushed the trial back and denied Meghan’s request to dismiss the claim that she and her husband contributed to writing “Finding Freedom.” This is the same Judge who will preside over Meghan’s case once it comes to trial. I don’t think Meghan’s request for summary judgement will be approved. This Judge acts like he has an agenda on behalf of the Royal Family and the media.

      • grumpy says:

        Of course it is the same judge, it is all the same case. In Britain judges don’t get influenced by the media. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are members of the royal family so lets hope he isnt influenced by royals. Hey lets set up all the conspiracy theories to try and justify the situation if she doesn’t win. British law courts are far less corrupt than Meghan will be used to on Suits, that’s her problem, the judge will be considering the law as relevant to her claims, not irrelevant points introduced to try and muddy the waters, such as ‘malicious agendas’ (which has nothing to do with a copyright claim).

      • equality says:

        @grumpy Yes, of course, /ALL UK judges are perfect and above any outside influence. (Sarcasm, in case you are sarcasm impaired.) I think her solicitors are handling the case and she isn’t relying on anything from a fictional TV show.

      • Yvette says:

        @Grumpy … And what, pray tell, does the book “Finding Freedom” have to do with the question of whether or not The Mail on Sunday violated copyright law by printing parts of the Duchess’s private letter?

        If we’re speaking of strict letter of the law in the British Courts, shouldn’t the introduction of “Finding Freedom” by the MOS be equally considered just as frivolous and only introduced in an attempt to ‘muddy the waters’? Because it has absolutely nothing to do with the Duchess’s copyright claim.

        In fact, every one of the MOS’s requests for for detailed information by submitting questions to the Duchess’s lawyers in the pre-trial discovery phase, approved by Judge Warby, was frivolous. They only did it to obtain grist for their media mill and used the information to write more articles in the very media outlet owned by the entity being sued by the Duchess in order to make money.

        It’s unconscionable that information obtained through sanctioned legal means by party in a legal dispute could use that information to write negative articles about the other party. An American judge would have applied a gag order in the case so such a thing wouldn’t have been possible.

  9. Tessa says:

    Even though the Sussexes are out of the country, they are scapegoated to downplay William’s recent behavior.

  10. ola says:

    Of course, she did. She co-wrote it. There’s a publisher’s note inside. Please read it.

    • Julia K says:

      Please tell what it says

    • Resa says:

      And yet, somehow, no one else has ever seen this note or mentioned it before, except you? Every single newspaper hellbent on smearing this woman? Every single blogger or lunatic YouTuber? Okay. Go back to kissing Kate and William’s asses. You’re better at that.

      • windyriver says:

        There’s no “publisher’s note”; there is however an Authors’ Note section at the end that discusses how Scobie and Durand obtained their information, including the content of conversations included in the book.

        Of course, nothing in the Authors’ Note supports what the commenter, or the media, is claiming about the Sussexes involvement in the book.

  11. Awkward symphony says:

    This move by the mail might be god sent! Omid on all his interviews for the book said that he got the information from tabloids coverage + interviewing those close to the couple and from his observations as an rr. The mail are digging their own grave here as this will allow Meghan’s team to reattach their strucked off arguments which asked for the palace sources especially those used by emily andrews. This judge better be careful. If he doesnt side with Meghan on summary like what Charles got for his similar case, the whole world will see how corrupt the British judicial system is.