Note : one can easily get into trouble or those who are uncomfortable in these activities, don’t take part in this life-hack. I found out that this is more of a technical problem for self-checkouts, so even if you are breaking the law, you can point out the technical aspect of the machines that allows it to happen.
With self checkouts, there is actually no employee there to oversee the shopping process, only you and the computer interact with one another. You can ‘fool’ the machines in several ways, the easiest one is taking items with no bar-codes, the machine detects items when it is placed on the scanner, which also acts as a weighing scale, however it cannot detect the ‘type’ of item, when someone puts an apple or orange it cannot distinguish, remember it’s just a machine. One can easily place an item and choose a different pricing, so placing a dozen freshly baked breads, but paying for one croissant can be done, due to it’s own technical failure !
Another quick way of hacking the checkout is, if one scans one item, then proceeds to pay, during the payment processing it’s other sensors are not active, one can easily put several more items on the bag. Then there are glitches in the system, so for e.g. if an item has a discount or offers, repeatedly selecting the item would reduce the actual price to only 10% of the value, this depends on the glitch of the system. These are more of a technical problem, which one can easily get away with.
There is the morality aspect of this issue, people who are religious voluntarily follow the rules, which makes the market function . Let’s take a look at the whole picture, the self-checkout machines have replaced workers, due to cost benefit ratio. Each workers average annual salary is ($15,000) one machine roughly costs ($3,000) that’s a 80% savings in cost. If supermarkets implemented self-checkouts throughout all the chains, it would save the company 80% in employee operating cost, which leads to job loss. The moral issue doesn’t apply to companies, their main goal is to increase shareholder earnings.
Automation is likely to take up plenty of jobs, most of them are in ‘blue collar’ sectors, like manufacturing, services, for now a basic income looks like a solution. In the meantime if you don’t like automation, just showcase the errors of the machines by using the simple life-hacks.