Queen Elizabeth starts her own YouTube channel

LONDON — Britain’s 81-year-old Queen Elizabeth II, considered an icon of traditionalism, launched her own special Royal Channel on YouTube on Sunday.

The queen will use the popular video-sharing Web site to send out her annual televised Christmas message, which she first delivered live to the nation and its colonies on Dec. 25, 1957.

Buckingham Palace also began posting archive and recent footage of the queen and other royals on the channel Sunday, with plans to add new clips regularly.

“The queen always keeps abreast with new ways of communicating with people,” Buckingham Palace said in a statement. “The Christmas message was podcast last year.”

The palace said, “She has always been aware of reaching more people and adapting the communication to suit. This will make the Christmas message more accessible to younger people and those in other countries.”

The royal page — which bears the scarlet lettered heading “The Royal Channel — The Official Channel of the British Monarchy” — is illustrated with a photograph of Buckingham Palace flanked by the queen’s Guards in their tall bearskin hats and red tunics.

Its modern video clips show shots of garden parties, state visits, the queen, the many British prime ministers who have served during her reign and a day in the life of her son, Prince Charles.

The footage of the queen’s 1957 Christmas TV broadcast will remind viewers that TV once was as groundbreaking a creation as Internet is today.

On the Web: www.youtube.com/theroyalchannel.

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