Wednesday, March 01, 2006

A thumbs down for "sign here"

This morning I stopped on my way to work to get petrol. When the friendly shop assistant asked me to "sign here" after using my credit card I did so as I always do.

I like to watch the "study" that takes place at this point. Some clerks glance at the two signatures. Some look closely. A couple weeks ago a Coles clerk looked like she was seriously doubting my authenticity.

I don't think I could sign my signature the same way twice if I tried!

Anyway, back to the station. The clerk lifts the signed receipt and the card and looks at both and then hands me my card back with a "that's fine." But here's the interesting bit... She looked at the face of the card to compare my name with my signature. She read the raised lettering "David Edgren" and then looked to see if my signature was the same name. Or, in a less favourable view of her intelect, she just knows she is supposed to hold both the card and the docket up for a moment before giving the card back. I nearly started laughing!

My point is this... Signing is rediculous and outdated. I can use my Credit Card without a signature on the phone, internet and a fax. But, in person I have to scribble. Rediculous.

Actually I think Credit Cards are outdated. Thumbs are all you need. Imagine this - you reach the teller and put your thumb on a finger print reader. Then the screen lights up with all the accounts available to you - depending on your bank accounts. You choose one and the clerk says, "Thanks Dave" because your name popped up on their screen too. That just makes more sense. And it is perfectly possible. Somebody should start "Thumbs Down Accounting Services" and charge .1% per use. They'd be rich and I'd be happy.

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Dave Edgren ~ Story: Teller, Author, Trainer ~

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