I hate those self service machines

@Asylum (48223)
Manchester, England
January 23, 2017 9:17am CST
There are a few machines that can be quite useful, such as ATMs or vending machines. However, the self service machines in supermarkets can be a real pain. Many people seem to find these convenient and use them regularly, whereas I usually avoid them at all costs. Today I called into Tesco in the city centre and decided to give the self service machine a try. I placed my basket on the left of the machine and pressed START in the machine. It was a slow process because I was carefully reading the instructions on screen as I scanned the items and placed them on the right hand side. Of course the last item would not scan, so I had to request the assistance of a store member. Apparently the label was creased, which required the barcode to be typed in manually. Shortly afterwards I visited Poundland and since I had an idea what to do I used the machine again. The first item scanned, but the second would not. When I looked at the screen it gave a message telling me to place the item in the bagging area. The assistant pointed out that I had placed the first item on the wrong side. The basket and bagging areas were in the reverse order to the ones at Tesco. I was confused enough without some comedian designing machines that varied to each other.
42 people like this
42 responses
@fishtiger58 (30319)
• Momence, Illinois
23 Jan 17
I never use them, my thought is that I pay enough for my stuff, why should I scan and bag them. it's not like I get a discount for doing it that way.
8 people like this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
The problem here is that shop assistants are becoming scarcer. These days you either use a machine or wait for ages to be served.
5 people like this
@fishtiger58 (30319)
• Momence, Illinois
23 Jan 17
@Asylum I would so hate that, there are always check outs open around here. But sometimes not enough so the lines get really long. But I'm retired don't have much else to do anyway.
2 people like this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
@fishtiger58 The same applies here, but often I would prefer to wait longer.
1 person likes this
@JohnRoberts (65106)
• Los Angeles, California
23 Jan 17
Better get used to it because it is the future.
5 people like this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
This is sadly true as there are less staff available every week.
1 person likes this
@egdcltd (7097)
23 Jan 17
I tend to use them a lot, and sometimes I'm sure they're slower. After paying for carrier bags was introduced, it was over a year before any of the machines I used stopped throwing a wobbly about the weight because I was using my own. Then when there's a problem, you have to wait for an assistant to help, and some clearly don't care. There's one woman in Asda that if I see on the self-service, I'll not use them, because she'd rather socialise than do her job (multiple times I've been waiting for help and she's been busy chatting to someone - even though my checkout was right next to her complaining).
4 people like this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
The assistants in most places seem quite helpful, but there will always be some with a totally wrong attitude.
1 person likes this
@egdcltd (7097)
23 Jan 17
@Asylum The biggest problem is when one assistant is trying to serve a couple of dozen or more checkouts, including conveyor ones, but that's the fault of the store, not them. This one assistant though gives every impression of not wanting to do any work.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
@egdcltd Once again it is the store that is to blame because they allow this behaviour to continue. Unless the staff member is made to work then soon the attitude will spread.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (137038)
• Bunbury, Australia
23 Jan 17
Love your last sentence! And the thought of a comedian deliberately setting out to stuff people around.
3 people like this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
It is the impression that I get when I try another machine and it works differently. Clearly designed by sadistic people.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (137038)
• Bunbury, Australia
24 Jan 17
@Asylum Who may be watching from a hidden vantage point!
2 people like this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
@JudyEv Yes, I did get the sensation that someone was giggling in the background.
@LadyDuck (182458)
• Switzerland
23 Jan 17
We do not have self service machines here, but I use them every time I go grocery shopping in Italy. Incredible to say, they work very well, I never had an item refused, I am very surprised.
2 people like this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
The one that would not scan for me was a sticker affixed to display a reduced price, whereas most barcodes are printed directly onto the product packaging.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (182458)
• Switzerland
23 Jan 17
@Asylum The barcodes that are printed directly on the packages usually scan very well. I had to enter manually only the sticker from the butcher shop. It is true that it was not places in a very intelligent way from the butcher.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
@LadyDuck Those stickers are adhered without care, which is ridiculous considering their purpose.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 Jan 17
@Asylum I have some times where I find the machines a positive thing but it is usually because the store employees are less polite. That said the machines are so impersonal!
2 people like this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
They are also impossible to negotiate with, so if something is not right you cannot ask them why.
1 person likes this
@pgntwo (22753)
• Tripoli, Lebanon
23 Jan 17
A bit like cars - not only does the steering wheel move from one side to the other, depending on country or territory, but the clusters of control levers move - I have occasionally flashed my wipers at someone when driving a hired car...
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
Oh yes, I can just imagine how easy that can be.
1 person likes this
@pgntwo (22753)
• Tripoli, Lebanon
23 Jan 17
@Asylum Most unsatisfying, yes. Hooting your screen washers at some other ignorant road user does little to calm the nerves. ..
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
@pgntwo Especially if they are driving an open top vehicle.
1 person likes this
• Preston, England
23 Jan 17
I hate such machines too, they bring out my inner Luddite - they will put staff out of work and they are very confusing
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
I love the Luddite reference and can certainly relate to that
1 person likes this
• Preston, England
23 Jan 17
@Asylum some machines clearly exist to create unemployment and not much else
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
@arthurchappell Another infuriating machine is the Passport scanner at the airport. I constantly have problems with those.
1 person likes this
24 Jan 17
I don't like them either, it's replacing someone's job with forcing the customer to do their own labor.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
They would annoy me less of they were more user friendly.
1 person likes this
24 Jan 17
@Asylum I've noticed they often require an employee to help you operate them, which defeats the purpose.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
@cavalierscholar True, she is always very busy as well.
1 person likes this
@BelleStarr (39827)
• United States
23 Jan 17
I am not a big fan of these machines either, especially if I am buying individual fruits or vegetables. Way too much work.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
This reminds me of the first time that I bought bananas in Mercadona, which is a supermarket chain in Spain. The woman at checkout asked me where the label was. Apparently you have to weigh such produce and the machine prints a label to be scanned.
1 person likes this
@BelleStarr (39827)
• United States
23 Jan 17
@Asylum I have seen that in England with fruit and veggies but we don't do it that way here at all.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
@BelleStarr Here in England the staff weigh the groceries.
1 person likes this
23 Jan 17
You better get used to the future.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
I made an attempt to do so today, which resulted in quite a bit of mayhem and confusion.
1 person likes this
23 Jan 17
@Asylum Ouch
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
@TheInvisibleMan I also have issues with those EU passport scanning machines at the airport. I used to avoid them, but now they appear to be compulsory.
1 person likes this
@Fishmomma (11443)
• United States
19 Feb 17
This depends on where I'm going, as the grocery store I'm getting in a checker line, as many items aren't tagged correctly, so I know the self check machine will take longer, then the checker takes many times. Imagine 4 lines and 1 person for the self check and I usually have coupons that means I will need that self checker to view the coupon and decide whether I'm buying the right size and number of the product. I pick a checker line that knows me and the checker hits the over ride, so its done quickly. I'll admit if the self checker assistant is somebody I know, then it could go fast. There have been a few times one of my friends is on the self checkout and she scans my entire cart takes my coupons and its super fast. A few days ago she said are you ready and I ended up being done really fast in the self checkout and she did everything. Now if its Home Depot, I know its going to be self checkout at least halt the time with only the self checkout lines open. Many times my husband and I end up not buying anything when there is a problem in any of the self check out lines. The store has coupons for members of the club and the self checkout person checks to make sure you are a member and only use the coupon once.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
19 Feb 17
I find the self service machines to be too unreliable. Maybe the American ones have been around longer and have less problems.
1 person likes this
@Fishmomma (11443)
• United States
19 Feb 17
@Asylum It really depends on the store, as some don't change their prices often, so the machines are more reliable. I don't like seeing stores hire less workers, as its hard to get a job and several of my friends are struggling to pay their bills.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
19 Feb 17
@Fishmomma Reduced price stickers always seem to generate issues.
1 person likes this
@jaboUK (55201)
• United Kingdom
24 Jan 17
I never use those machines either. I prefer to have the cashier do the work. And as you say, the least they could do is have them standardised. I have the same problem with cars - my son's has the wipers and lights on the opposite side to mine, which is confusing if we use each other's.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
I knew a lorry driver who owned an American car. He drove to work in a left hand drive car, drove a right hand drive HGV all day then drove home in his left hand drive again.
1 person likes this
@jaboUK (55201)
• United Kingdom
24 Jan 17
@Asylum Goodness that would take some getting used to.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
@jaboUK He claimed it was no problem.
1 person likes this
@tzwrites (4956)
• Romania
24 Jan 17
I find those quite annoying plus, what's wrong with letting people keep their cashier jobs?
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
The majority of customers prefer to deal with a cashier.
1 person likes this
@tzwrites (4956)
• Romania
24 Jan 17
@Asylum I definitely do
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
@tzwrites So do I.
• Eugene, Oregon
24 Jan 17
@Asylum, After reading the other comments and since my own wife and my daughter have little problem using these infernal machines, I am wondering if women in general have less trouble with them than men do?
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
That makes sense because I cannot understand those machines or women.
1 person likes this
• Eugene, Oregon
24 Jan 17
@Asylum We are members of a large club in that respect.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
@JamesHxstatic No doubt because neither self service machines or women appear to operate in any logical manner.
1 person likes this
@youless (94301)
• Guangzhou, China
24 Jan 17
On the contrary, I like these machines because it can really give me lots of convenience. For example, the bank is usually very crowded. And today the ATM can do many things besides withdrawing and depositing cash, you can also transfer money, topping up the traffic card, exchange foreign money etc. If the ATM is out of working, it will drive me crazy because I don't want to spend longer time to wait in the bank.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
I find ATMs very useful too, but those self service machines seriously frustrate me.
1 person likes this
@youless (94301)
• Guangzhou, China
24 Jan 17
@Asylum Since those vending machines sell products much more expensive, so I prefer to buy those products from the supermarket or 7-11.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
@youless I agree, but they can be convenient at times.
1 person likes this
@DWDavis (15035)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
24 Jan 17
I recently posted a discussion related to this very thing. I was not so much complaining about how tricky the machines can be to operate, though they can consternate me at times. It is the jobs being replaced by the technology I was opining about.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
The job replacement is inevitable as technology advances. If we fail to accept this we are reverting to the old system of the famous Luddites who smashed up machinery during the Industrial Revolution. We do not want to return to manual manufacturing or ploughing the fields with an ox, instead we should utilise the benefits of advancement more fairly.
1 person likes this
@DWDavis (15035)
• Pikeville, North Carolina
26 Jan 17
@Asylum I think one of the great questions of this century, or at least the first half of it, is going to be what to do with low skill workers who've been displaced by machines and don't really have the aptitude for something more complex.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
26 Jan 17
@DWDavis This situation has occurred a myriad of times as technology has developed.
1 person likes this
@allknowing (70794)
• India
24 Jan 17
Have you tried toilets in different countries but I suppose one has no choice but to learn the art of using them. I can never forget one instance I do not remember which country it was that a whole lot of us got in but did not know how the flush worked. I mentioned that and someone outside told us what to do. It wa great atleast to hear the flushes going out at the same time.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
I have had difficulty locating the flush system at a few hotels.
1 person likes this
@allknowing (70794)
• India
25 Jan 17
@Asylum Not just in each country but they are different in setups too.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
25 Jan 17
@allknowing True, there are many options here.
1 person likes this
@Beatburn (3945)
• Philippines
23 Jan 17
It must have been confusing. That worries me about such machines. I just might make a mistake and cause delay.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
I felt as though I may be stuck in limbo if nobody was around to offer assistance.
1 person likes this
@Beatburn (3945)
• Philippines
24 Jan 17
@Asylum They seem easy to use but whenever I'm near one, I get anxious. Thoughts of Terminator and Skynet?
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
24 Jan 17
@Beatburn They are not as simple as they look.
1 person likes this
@JESSY3236 (7572)
• United States
23 Jan 17
We have some at Walmart. I like them sometimes when I don't have a lot of things and don't have time to stand in line.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
Do you ever have issues with barcodes that do not scan?
@JESSY3236 (7572)
• United States
23 Jan 17
@Asylum I had once, but I haven't since.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48223)
• Manchester, England
23 Jan 17
@JESSY3236 Some barcodes are quite small, so if one was creased I would have serious difficulty reading it and manually entering it into the machine.
1 person likes this