Insta-ban? Don’t post photos of yourself in ‘casual settings’, judges told

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Also warned not to reveal holiday plans

Judges should think twice before posting photographs on social media sites such as Instagram and Facebook, new judicial guidance has warned.

Members of the judiciary should be “wary” of uploading images of “themselves in casual settings whether alone or with family members and/or friends”. The fresh advice, which is part of an update to the Guide to Judicial Conduct, goes on to say that social activity must be “assessed in the light of the judicial officeholder’s duty to maintain the dignity of the office”. So, presumably drunken selfies are a strict no-no.

The updated guidelines also warn judges not to publish “more personal information than is necessary”, as well as “information which could result in a risk to personal safety… [such as] holiday plans”.

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In his foreword to the revised rule book, the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, Lord Burnett, says “the rise of social media has presented new questions and concerns for which guidance is required”. Burnett continues:

“What remains the same, however, is the basic set of principles guiding judicial conduct. Judicial independence, impartiality and integrity provide judges with a guide, not only as to the way they discharge their judicial functions, but also as to how they conduct their private lives to the extent that this affects their judicial role.”

But it seems the judiciary is welcoming some aspects of social media — particularly vlogging.

Last year, Burnett himself took to YouTube to deliver his first public speech as the judiciary’s head honcho. Following the Chief Justice’s lead, nine High Court and Court of Appeal bigwigs starred in iPhone-shot vlogging clips just one month later.

And the judiciary’s enthusiasm for all things YouTube shows no signs of waning. Earlier this month, Legal Cheek reported that nine circuit judges had starred in their own vlogging series covering topics including the challenges and rewards of the career and how judges work together.

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Not Amused

Glad to see an LCJ finally getting to grips with the real problems facing British Justice …


Lady Neigh

Given that judge pay is fixed in the £100,000s and the constantly rising cost of living in London, isn’t the real problem that very soon distinguished members of the judiciary will begin to sell their haggard wizened bodies online to make ends meet?


Not Amused

Don’t worry, I am positive that reducing the scourge of forced judicial prostitution will be number one on Burnetts remaining list of ‘pointless ways to pretend I am doing anything of value’.


Lady Neigh

Banning Instagram is a band aid solution. The real solution is banning judges from having OnlyFans accounts



I’d lick cream off a judge. Yes.



I hope you aren’t calling Ernest Ryder haggard.



Judges come from wealthy aristocratic families, I doubt they’re struggling living in London. The pay is just pocket change for them.



Yes, that is the main reason judges posing naked in front of webcams is implausible


Ciaran Goggins

Having been in Northern Ireland before the ceasefire and seen some fittings up I wondered when the judiciary would wake up to it’s status of being a target;)


K&E rat.

This just further proves that the judiciary is detached from the society. Not a good move. Ridiculous.



>20 years call

>phd in math
>any job i want

almost feel bad for them having to sell their bodies online


Doreen Major-Wilkinson

Surely judges should be more open and transparent? I would be quite interested to know what they get up to outside of work.


You know who

This post has been removed because it breached Legal Cheek’s comments policy.


You know who

So just to be clear, it’s now also against LC rules to make poor taste jokes about totally fictitious characters? Because there isn’t actually a judge called Open Fleeth, you know


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