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This supermarket installed — oh, this because it doesn’t trust self-checkout customers

I always imagined that the people who were just getting one or two items would be the ones to benefit from the self-checkout lanes at the grocery store.

Yet, as time has progressed, I’ve developed pessimistic sentiments on this shift toward replacing people with (imperfect) technology.

Every time I was required to use self-checkout at Heathrow Airport, I had a terrible time.

I tried many times to use the automated checkout without assistance from a shop clerk, but to no avail.

After seeing photos of consumers waiting in lengthy lines for a human cashier while disregarding the self-checkout option, I started to wonder whether some individuals were intentionally rebelling.

Then I read that several supermarkets were eliminating self-checkout lines because, supposedly, too many consumers were taking items without paying for them.

Also, several supermarkets have started having personnel examine the receipts of customers who use self-checkout to make sure they’ve paid.

Every time I looked at this photo, I wondered what was wrong. To what end was the public’s faith in otherwise excellent supermarkets suddenly dwindling?

Human cashiers are usually faster since they are experts at their jobs, they know the produce codes, and they will bag your groceries for you.

Going through a self-checkout is as simple as trying to execute the tasks it was designed to do without any instruction.

But recently, a major grocery store company has implemented yet another clever gimmick. The British supermarket company Sainsbury’s, which can seem very upscale on a good day, now blocks customers from leaving after they’ve used the self-checkout lanes.

It has been reported by the Manchester Evenings News that customers who want to self-checkout must now scan their receipts before leaving the store.

Consider the consumers’ plight if you will. Self-checkout is a time-saving option. Another thing for consumers to keep in mind when out shopping.

Let us now hear the comments of one dissatisfied Sainsbury’s shopper: “By not allowing customers to leave until they scan a receipt, which not all of them want, they are effectively detaining them against their will and making them stay. How will they react? Who wants to be held prisoner by someone who would go through their belongings before letting you go?”

It’s quite possible, in my opinion. It’s possible that they’ll have to pay a higher salary to a full-time security guard to monitor the self-checkout lanes.

Using technology to save costs is a natural goal for any business, and it’s easy to see why stores would want to do this. Unlike other retail sectors, supermarkets have a limited profit margin. Due to an upsurge in shoplifting, Walmart has even threatened to shut down locations.

More importantly, Sainsbury’s claims that this is “not a new security precaution and appears in a tiny number of our shops at the self-service checkout sections.” (I’m curious as to how the corporation decided which shops would get this excellent perk.)

Consumers are being turned into workers via technology too frequently without providing enough value to the customers.

Isn’t it a disappointing twist of fate to block consumers’ exit while advertising a faster route out?

The optimistic psychological effect of technological progress is assumed to always be the case. Here, though, we see the exact reverse. Isn’t it more emotionally relieving to deal with a cashier? More relatable, too.

It’s possible that this is only a temporary setback. Little chips the size of a grain of rice will soon be implanted in our palms to serve as our unique identifiers. That manner, our payment cards will be automatically charged as we scan.

Oh, and the grocery store will know our exact location. In case you needed reminding, however, you get it.