The Mystery Of Who Edited That Wonky Kate Middleton Photo Has Been Solved

The Kate Middleton conspiracy theories had already been in overdrive thanks to a dubious statement from Kensington Palace followed by a suspicious photo of the Princess of Wales published by TMZ. But just when the situation seemed to be quieting, the Royal Family reignited a media frenzy thanks to a truly bizarre Mother’s Day photo.

On Sunday, Kensington Palace issued a photo that showed a smiling, seemingly healthy, and most notably, alive Kate Middleton with all three of her children. However, within hours, the Associated Press, AFP, Getty, and Reuters all issued kill notices to pull the image.

Upon close inspection, the photo was littered with evidence of digital manipulation particularly with Princess Charlotte’s left hand as well as other telltale signs of editing:

When AP determined the photo appeared to have been manipulated, it issued what is known as a “photo kill,” an industry term that retracted the image and instructed clients to remove the photo from their systems.

“At closer inspection it appears that the source has manipulated the image,” the AP said in its advisory. “No replacement photo will be sent.”

Naturally, Kensington Palace releasing an obviously Photoshopped image of Kate Middleton only dumped fuel on the conspiracy theory fires. People’s suspicions were through the roof on social media, which finally prompted a statement from the royal couple that, like everything in this situation, will only make things worse.

According to the official Twitter account for the Wales, Princess Catherine edited the photo. Yup.

“Like many amateur photographers, I do occasionally experiment with editing,” she wrote. “I wanted to express my apologies for any confusion the family photograph we shared yesterday caused. I hope everyone celebrating had a very happy Mother’s Day. C”

(Via AP, The Prince and Princess of Wales on Twitter)