LONDON (AP) -- Twitter is now a bit more royal.
Britain's Prince Andrew has joined the micro-blogging service as @TheDukeOfYork.
Within hours of opening the account Monday, Andrew had more than 10,000 followers -- but also had received several abusive comments.
The son of Queen Elizabeth II has served as a navy helicopter pilot and a British business ambassador, and is following charities, arts organizations and the Hunstanton Golf Club on Twitter.
So far he is was not following his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson, who tweets as @SarahTheDuchess.
The British monarchy has two official Twitter accounts, but Andrew is the first family member to tweet in a personal capacity, signing messages he has written AY.
Asked about abusive tweets Andrew had received, a palace spokesman said the duke is a champion of free speech.
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