That's my royal scoop, says Huffpo's Yvonne Yorke
Almost as soon as it was published, The Vancouver Observer's "What will Kate Middleton wear on her wedding day?" article gave birth to yet another big question: Who identified Kate Middleton's wedding dress designer first?
OK, honestly, if The Guardian isn't sure what Kate Middleton's wearing, then we're not sure what Kate's wearing.
But VO did report that the dress designer was Sophie Cranston. Her name was being kept under tight wraps due to reasons listed in the VO article. Bang Showbiz News, where VO found the golden tidbit, sourced the Daily Mail, as follows:
Sophie Cranston, Image from libelula-studio.com
"Cranston is said to have not been announced as the designer in order to protect her and her family 'from media scrutiny for as long as possible, and to allow her the freedom to create the wedding gown of Catherine's dreams without additional pressures and distractions'."
However, it turns out that Yvonne Yorke, the Huffingon Post's Royal Correspondent, first broke the world-exclusive speculation on April 16 -- and not the Daily Mail.
Yorke contacted VO to set the royal record straight. Apparently, Yorke had written about the issue four months ago for an Dec 17, 2010, story, hinting at the designer way before the Mail.
"This quote is taken from my April 16 Huffington Post's story (where I'm Royal Correspondent), and that I was the one who broke this scoop," said Yorke.
"Nobody had suspected she would go with a little-known name back then. So really, the source from the Daily Mail just took something I had already put out there four months ago. I was the one who had hinted that it was not Bruce Oldfield, but a young, little-known British female designer who had worked with Catherine before."
"Don't you hate working your butt off on a big scoop and have someone else get the credit?" said Yorke.
(Yes, we do.)
"The Daily Mail picked up on my scoop and piggybacked on it with their story, which appeared two days later on April 18. The Mail even acknowledged that Sophie Cranston had already been tipped as the wedding dress designer (though reporter Rebecca English didn't say by whom other than it was on the Internet -- that would be me)."
Unwittingly, The Vancouver Observer picked up the juicy detail from the Bang Showbiz News, who we assume unwittingly picked it up from The Daily Mail, which we hope was unwitting when they picked it up. Yorke was quick to react. She contacted VO and asked we set the record straight: It was she who cracked the royal big secret first, she said.
Meantime, what does it take to be a Royal Correspondent?
Busy Yorke, who was getting ready to go to London to report on the Royal Wedding, had this to say: "It really comes down to having the right contacts and how good your sources are that enables you to come out with world-exclusives. It's actually a lot of investigative journalism, requires a lot of hard work and having good instincts."