It was pointed out that the Princess had not only cooperated for Andrew Morton's book but also spoke to her favoured jounalists regularly.
Loved ones considered Princess Diana's 1995 BBC Panorama interview with Martin Bashir to be the cause of her mental decline. It was claimed that her marriage to Prince Charles suffered irreversible damage due to the statements that were 'extracted' from her during the interview. Many statements made by her during the exchange, including the famous, "there were three of us in the marriage," sent shockwaves in the country. An inquiry into the said interview proved 26 years later that Bashir had indeed 'tricked' the Princess into doing the same as many had claimed.
After the investigation proved that the journalist had used 'deception', Princes William and Harry condemned the BBC and the journalist for their actions. William defended his mother by saying that he was "most saddened" that Diana never learned she was deceived "not just by a rogue reporter" but by BBC bosses. He further claimed that the interview made his "parents' relationship worse," and had "contributed significantly to [his mother's] fear, paranoia, and isolation". However, journalists pointed out that while Bashir was wrong in manipulating Diana, she used to manipulate the media as well, reported Women Working.
British Journalist Andrew Pierce said, "We also have to remember that Princess Diana manipulated the media too to her ends." Journalist Kevin Maguire added, "She had, many years earlier, cooperated with the Andrew Morton book. She had favored journalists she would regularly meet and speak to. That was the world she operated in. But the sort of things that went on at the time were absolutely wrong." Good Morning Britain host, Susanna Reid pointed out, "This was a rogue reporter at the BBC. But it wasn't like everyone else left her alone. She was under siege constantly," reported Women Working.
This was not the first time that the Princess was being called a "manipulator". Dickie Arbiter, her former media manager, had labeled her the same. "There's Diana the cheated bride, but also Diana the manipulator when it comes to the media. She helped with the Andrew Morton book, she did Panorama," he had said. Many shared the same opinion and said that Prince William's strong criticism of the BBC was unnecessary. Some insiders said the same but their reason was different, "For him, wearing one’s heart on one’s sleeve so publicly and bringing humiliation onto the Royal Family — well that was a big no-no. He refused to speak to his mother for some days after that and bear in mind how close they were, this was absolutely devastating for Diana," Royal commentator Katie Nicholl pointed out, suggesting that it was very 'out of character', according to Express.