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"I hate computers" nametag



Ok, I was originally going to post this somewhere else, but then I realized I couldn't do it without descending into a rant.

I work at a small, independant Verizon Wireless store. The other day a woman came in from the new Citizens Bank across the street (they recently bought out Charter One, a popular chain in our area). She asked with whom with did our banking and if we would be interested in a Citizens Bank business account. I took one look at her and immediately said no. The reason? All of the employees of Citizens bank have these cutesy nametags with phrases on them that are supposed to make customers think that they are "on your side" like "I don't like these rope lines, either," or "I love your smile." The problem is that some of them say "I Hate Computers."

Why would a bank say such a thing? I realize it is an attempt to be cutesy and empathize with clueless idiot customers that can't operate a basic PIN pad. However, there are several problems with this line of thinking.

1) It immediately turns off all computer-saavy people like myself who realize that computers are a wonderful invention and are a key to much of our comfortable lifestyle today.

2) It perpetuates this myth among people that everything in this world went to **** as soon as computers came along, like the world would be so much better if every company had 1000 secretaries to take messages making $20K a year each instead of a voice mail system that costs $10K up front and $1000 a year to operate. Or that people would be all nicey-nice if we couldn't write emails (or make phone calls, these days) and instead had to wait for the USPS to take two days to send a letter across town.

3) It's extremely hypocritical for the banking industry to be perpetuating this myth. I am hard pressed to think of an industry (other than the computer industry, of course) that has benefitted MORE from the rise of the information age. Banks can now charge exorbinant fees for bounced checks because no one can possibly rush to deposit money faster than the banks can clear a check. ATM's, direct deposit, electronic accounting systems, and the simple handheld calculator are all benefits of the computer that have revolutionized the banking industry while lowering costs and streamlining operations.

The only reason I can see for a bank teller to "hate computers" is that a well designed computer (in an ATM) could quite literally do every single aspect of her job. If the ATM at my bank was advanced enough to read the MICR line of checks and reliably read the handwriting that specifies the amount, etc., so that i could deposit rent checks from tenants in it, I would have no reason whatsoever to speak with a teller ever....
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