Quick question: You’re a pilot preparing for take-off. Do you:
a) Run through safety checks or
b) Post a video to you adoring followers on social media?
You already know which one he chose. Air China announced that it has suspended a co-pilot over neglecting his duties in favor livestreaming himself from the cockpit prior to takeoff. The unnamed pilot shared his videos and images on the Chinese site, Weibo (which is said to be similar to Twitter), under the user name of “90000xiaobao”.
The pilot had garnered the adoration of some 6,000 followers, a number of whom showered him with compliments and virtual gifts.
But, he also had some detractors, who asked, simply, if he was doing this, how could he be doing his job? Some of these concerned individuals, in turn, contacted his employer to out him over these postings and were able to show that this was a repeated pattern of behavior for the pilot.
This may be the end of the social media road for the “90000xiaobao” persona, as all of his posts on Weibo have disappeared.
In its statement announcing the suspension, Air China said that it took these steps because it felt that the negative attention from this controversy would impair his performance and put passengers at further risk.
Maybe next time, when he hears the call to stow away those electronic devices, he’ll realize that this rule applies to him as well.