With a few notable exceptions (Michael Kirby springs to mind), judges in Australia do not have a high public profile. Many non-lawyers would struggle to name a judge currently serving on an Australian court. The lack of public profile is not really a problem. In fact, it should be viewed as a benefit. What judges do should be more important than who judges are. Publicity about what goes on in open court is important. As Lord Chief Justice Hewart famously observed, it ‘is of fundamental importance that justice should not only be done, but should be manifestly and undoubtedly be seen to be done’. The principle of open justice is crucial to the proper administration of justice. Publicity about individual judges is less so.
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