Justice — as Gordon Hewart, the Lord Chief Justice of England, once said — must not only be done, but must also be seen to be done.
Today, the aphorism may well be used in another context: You must not only do good work, but you must also be seen to be doing good work — on social media!
Even those who are usually quiet, efficient and low profile have realised that their quiet efficiency is doing them no good, unless it is showcased on social media platforms.
And so it is that many IAS and IPS officers, their juniors, and even doctors who used to shun the limelight in the belief that their work would speak for itself, are now reluctantly taking to social media, if only to prevent inefficient self-promoters from walking away with undeserved credit.
But it’s not always a happy experience.
Recently, a doctor contact of one of our reporters said: “I am very bad with social media and my hospital thinks I won’t get patients if I am not on Instagram. Now, I have an Instagram account… and I have to pay ₹15,000 a month to maintain it! Poor doc.
Again, a recently-promoted traffic cop, who otherwise believes in his work should speak for itself, had to take to social media to highlight a reduction in the number of accident deaths in December compared to earlier years.
While several Bengalureans congratulated the officer for his efficient road safety and traffic management skills, he drew some unexpected flak as well. One user posted that the drop in the number of dead in accidents may have been because people were refraining from taking their vehicles out fearing the city’s potholed roads and the high fines levied by Bengaluru cops!
There is, it seems, no winning on social media.