A Queen for the Internet Generation

He did concede that "having this site is another step is making it a little more user-friendly for people to obtain information about the queen … and the royal family's movements."

British newspapers have been unanimously supportive of the queen's latest foray into the world of technology, with even the Telegraph recalling her 1957 "masterstroke" in televising the Christmas message.

A columnist for the left-leaning newspaper the Guardian congratulated the monarch, but observed that "you need to make it more fun for the Internet generation."

With ambitious plans to add more archival as well as current footage, and to get text translated into French, Spanish, German, Italian and Hindi, the royal Web site is only in its early stages.

And after a weekend that saw Britain's foremost royal historian David Starkey criticize the queen for her "philistine" attitude to culture, the announcement of this channel could not have come at a better time.

"She completely upstaged him," Tominey laughed.

"One doesn't ask a sovereign to be a museum curator, or whatever he expected her to be," Tominey said, adding, "and anyway, it's not true. She's known to be very well-informed."

Now, she can add well-connected to her list of attributes.

In less than 48 hours, almost 10,000 people have subscribed to the new channel. How many will log on to watch her Christmas speech Tuesday is anyone's guess, but the level of interest generated by the announcement alone suggests that audience figures won't be too shabby.

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