When it comes to self-service checkouts, it’s fair to say that most people either love them or hate them.
Many people praise them for making the shopping experience faster, while others believe they’re taking jobs away from people who are willing to work.
Then there are the people who find that they never work correctly for them when it comes time for them to scan their items.
For one wife, however, her frustration comes from people who use the modern machines as an excuse for stealing items.
In fact, she’s so angry that she’s taken to the internet to out her husband as a thief.
Writing on parenting website Mumsnet, the woman said that she’s fed up with her man coming home with stolen goods.
And while many people may be guilty of scanning a mango as a cheap potato, the woman suggested that her hubby has been taking things to new extremes.
“Dh [darling husband] has started to steal from self-service tills. Mostly small items such as chocolate bars or cans but today came home with a new wallet,” she fumed.
She said that he bragged about getting the wallet for free and even suggested that he’d pay for one item but come home with three.
The wife continued: “I basically told him he was shoplifting and we had a big argument over it. He said, ‘everyone does it’ and that I’m no better as we were under-charged in a restaurant once and didn’t say anything.”
She wrote that she warned her husband about the seriousness of his behaviour but that he didn’t think it was a big deal.
According to News.com.au, retail theft current costs Australia’s retailers $4.5bn a year. They explained that theft at the self-service checkouts had become “normalised” and that less Australians feel guilty about incorrectly swiping an item to get it cheaper.
Researchers at QUT are even looking into ways to stop people from stealing but say the lack of human element makes it hard for people to feel bad for what they’ve done.
“People struggle to understand who the victim is when committing deviance to a seemingly faceless organisation,” Research Fellow and QUT’s PwC Chair in Digital Economy Paula Dootson told News.com.au.
“The human component brings in this empathy which isn’t there with an inanimate object like an ATM and that’s why we’re seeing more theft out of self-serve checkout from people who would never normally steal.”
Despite being a common occurrence, many people flooded the wife’s initial post with comments condemning his actions.
One person wrote: “He will eventually get caught and will be extremely humiliated. Is it worth that for a chocolate bar?”
Another comment read: “How could this not be shoplifting/stealing? If he won’t stop it he’ll get cocky and get caught.”
A third added: “Tell him to take a long hard look at himself and ask why he’s doing it.”