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The Cashless Society has arrived


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Down at the Men's Shed, each person kicks the tin with $2 for smoko. I have been using the plastic for nearly a year now and have only carried folding stuff  once this year. So this morning I went looking for some coin to pay my way. I had to search around everywhere to find enough coins to make $2. Now I have one 5 cent coin left. I shudder to see my bank account to see the amount I've forked out in transaction fees for purchases under $10.

 

It's amazing that the Telco's can give us unlimited phone calls and massive amounts of data usage, but the banks still charge high prices for dealing with a few kilobytes of data.

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Since Covid hit in early 2020, I recon I've only had about $400 in cash pass through my wallet. I always used to go shopping then drop in at a local lime grower's honesty stall on the road to buy some limes and lemons. I always had gold coins kicking about in the car, but not now. Maybe I should go to the bank one day and draw out a few months stock of coins.

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If I need coins for small purchases where the shop has a minimum card spend or pay a fee, I go to the Woolies self-serve machines. You can do a cash-out transaction only, and get notes and coins. No limit on how small an amount. I've drawn $1.80. But you can't tap and go, you must enter a PIN for cash withdrawals. I went to a Commbank ATM the other day to draw $10.00. It told me "Invalid Amount". Minimum $20.00, multiples of $20. There are no $10.00's in the machine. Woolies would at least have given me two fives.

 

Lotto agencies are the worst. A mini quickpick costs $11.95, $9.95 for Powerball, minimum card transaction $15.00. You have to take a couple of scratchies.

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All GOOD !,

BUT

Waiit till those lines go down, then it,s a different Sign in front of you.

CASH ONLY.

I was caught out Once !.

But 

The servo hadn,t put a sign out, and the police made them accept  the money l had in hand.

Shop at the ' super store ' then get ' cash to spend ' on those smaller items. 

spacesailor

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58 minutes ago, Yenn said:

they didn’t know price.

Even if they did know the price, most check-out operators couldn't add two numbers together.

 

It's not fair to blame staff for not knowing prices, after all, they change weekly. Also, working out how much you have to pay in total for your shopping isn't of much interest to the store. They want each item to go through the scanner for inventory purposes and re-ordering of stock.

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True .

BUT 

When you put $ 70 something , in your car then get told cash only..

That backup $ 50 is,nt going to pay the full bill. He got very stroppy , & called the cops. Thinking he had me over a barrel. 

Untill the cops reminded him ' no sign ' no infringement.

If a shop increases its prices without updating Their advertised  price they can,t charge the extra dollars.

Most supermarkets policy is overcharged then its free !.

spacesailor

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This morning comm bank eftpos terminals were down, luckily most customers have phone banking access and the tower was working. Not good when you arrange for pickup of jobs and it doesn’t work. Technology is good but it’s not fail safe. We have had many times when the towers were out at same time as other issues.

 

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The all new 'network banking is always there', all falls apart when a customer/user/supplier fails to locate themselves in the inner city. If outside the optimum network area, stuff goes wrong very easily.

 

I blame it in privatisation of telecomms. You can't convince me that paying to build numerous parallel infrastructure services will ever be cheaper than building one service.

 

The networks that hold the whole financial system together now rely upon numerous different telcos who are relying on serving their biggest income demographic, which in turn happens to be inner city customers.

 

So, our financial services, upon which our bigger picture economy relies, really don't care about supplying 'out of town' network service.

 

The age of supplying a service to all the public, are gone.

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I love cash, and I always try to keep a modest amount on hand. Millions of others think like me, they will never bring in a totally cashless society.

I can think of nothing worse than being caught without cash money and all electrically-operated transaction systems are down.

One of the problems with blackouts is not being able to pump fuel - so I always keep 20-40 litres of fuel on hand, and more in my workshop. 

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My ' gripe post ' was in responce to an email, advising All nbn customers. That it will be down on such a day.

Who sent this message  !,  my internet provider, as nbn doesn't give a damm, about ITS custdmers. 

No internet, No phone, and No pay tv, 

But l have to still pay their bill every month, with No discount for None service days.

spacesailor

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8 minutes ago, spacesailor said:

Who sent this message  !

Must be the same mob who make those scam calls "This is Wendy from the Australian National Broadband Network". NBN doesn't call customers. They are wholesalers who sell their service to ISP's.

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Like l said !.

NBN Does,nt care about the end user. My ISP DID SEND THAT MESSAGE  !,

BUT

It was sent to my daughter who signed me up. My daughter sent me the message .

No

Information from nbn, like we ' joe publik' get from other big suppliers, ( power , gas , water, sewerage.  ).

Imagine a GAS leak in the roadway, and you hear about it from the Post office.

spacesailor

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Historically (as in the last 30 or so years), when we have been speaking of a cashless society, we haven't actually been speaking of a cashless society, but one in which the receipt and payment of case (as in paper/plastic/metal minted money) is totally electronic and while there is no usage of physical currency, it could still be used, and the transactions were movement in ownership of physical currency.

 

I watched a documentary about how France was developing the technology to do this before I first left Aus, so it had to be around 25 years ago. The theory was your smart cash card held information on the balance of your account so if the networks were down, the card still knew how much it had and the point of sale system would deduct accordingly and save the transaction both on the card and the point of sale system. When the point of sale system was reconnected to the network, it would send the transactions to the bank.. and the same with the cared.

 

It was a relatively simple system and it largely worked, but had two main issues to overcome:

  1. The technology at the time was a simple magnetic strip. The data was encrypted and the usage of a PIN meant that even if it were skimmed, the data couldn't be got to or the card used unless the skimmer knew the pin.. and that runs the same risk as it does today (notwithstanding pinless transaction limits). However, if the card got too near to a magnetic field, it could corrupt the data.
  2. While the card is not on the network, the card thinks the account has money in it, when transactions processed which it hasn't been able to reflect on the card have rendered the account with not enough money. At the same time, this was a similar problem that ATM networks had. In the early days where data networks were of low bandwidth, your bank's ATMs were real-time connected to each other over a small geographic area.. For each geographic area, there would be a central server that held details of client accounts. They synced with central servers every couple of hours. What this would mean is that you could use your card to buy, say petrol, and the regional server would be updated with the transaction. However, if you drove to an area where the ATM/Point of Sale network was serviced by a different distributed server, then it did not know about the withdrawal you made and thought you had the same amount of money as you did before the withdrawal. Many people cottoned onto this, and there was a big article about how going overdraft in these circumstances was tantamount to theft - except, that the defence was how is one supposed to know how much is in the account if the servers don't know.. there could have been expected deposits, for example, that didn't materialise and hadn't been pushed to the server - or someone simply forgot about a previous transaction they made.

 

Despite these problems, which were able to be overcome, the technology didn't take off because the banks couldn't agree an international standard. And even so, because the electronic payments were movements of physical cash, it was still wise to carry cash just in case.. so society would never really truly be cashless.

 

But that was in the day before digital currency and block-chain. Block-chain is not digital currency - it is a distributed, redundant and encrypted ledger that guarantees the data within the chain and can't be easily hacked/defrauded. All of the digital currency theft is not about hacking (or correctly termed, cracking) the block-chain; it's about stealing user's passwords/crypto keys and getting access to their blockchain or online digital currency accounts and stealing the money that way. Don't get me wrong, block chains can in theory be hacked, but it's just with computing power, to do so would take something like 130 years.. theoretically - that is how long it would take to try all the possible permutations and combinations of the key value - but in reality you may get lucky and find it at any time.

 

The real concern for me is sovereign digital currency. The Bank of England is looking into it and I find it disturbing. At the moment, the proposal is to create a digital form of currency to sit alongside the physical form. and the BoE, like today, would control the supply of money. As technology advances, its reliability advances and outages are far less common. With SpaceX and Amazon as well as the plethora of other private satellite companies coming on stream, remote internet connections, while slower, will still be more reliable and cheaper than satellite connections are today. Despite some of the other technological challenges/risks and cognitive issues some of the elderly will have, it is,  on the surface a step forward (unless your business is minting currency - then it isn't).

 

The problem I have is the same one that those who were piloting the cashless welfare cards in Australia - a government will now be able to control where you can spend your money - and what on through simple programming. And in the day of open government corruption and more extreme ideology, that is a worrying potential development. In theory, governments could control what you spend your money on; determine who stays in business and who doesn't, etc.. The government could turn it into a Mafioso style protection racket, as an example, or to direct money to their friends and allies, and away from, say, joining trade unions, etc.

 

At the moment, the BoE are saying that digital and physical currency will sit side by side.. But what does that mean? Is the money supply going to be 50/50 split between then, or, say, 95/5 split.

 

Interesting times coming.

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KrugerRand will fix it.

Just like the Crypto currency. Only Better, as it,s gold.

Funny though, it,s only a few centries that ' cash ' as we know it became legal.

 Before that any one ( rich enough ) could & did make their own coins, then the local shops could get them from that persons workers and  pay the same master, their dues.

spacesailor

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Jerry_Atrick

What l read is what history has done, ( without digital )

In the fifties through sixties, you could get a government ' check ' for a weeks work, then spend it at different shops, who wrote the expenditure on that paper check,and then you carried it forward untill it was ' spent '. 

( then back to work for more ) LoL

spacesailor

PS: Thomas Cook did the same thing for overseas travel money, you purchased the check in the currency to which you were going to travle to.

Edited by spacesailor
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  • 1 month later...

Can you guess where the word "cheque" comes from? Let's leave aside the American spelling "check" for a written financial document since it is a homonym with several other meanings.

 

The ancient game of chess was a favourite of the upper classes, played on a board divided into a number of squares. To our Norman conquers, that board was a escheker  from Old French eschequier.  Its meaning of a "department of the royal household concerned with the receipt, custody, and disbursement of revenue and with judicial determination of certain causes affecting crown revenues"  began under the Norman kings of England. The King's accountants used to do their calculations by using counters on a cloth divided in squares that covered a table. The counters and the squares reminded people of a chess board, so the department was known as the "eschequier". Somebody thought that the word came from Latin and had been misspelled, so they replaced the "s" with "x", and we got "exchequer".

 

"Cheque" seems to have come into use in England in the mid-1700s to describe a type of document for the transfer of money from one person to another that did away with the need to do the transaction with coins. The daily cheque clearings began around 1770 when bank clerks met at the Five Bells (a tavern in Lombard Street in the City of London) to exchange all their cheques in one place and settle the balances in cash. Thus the the financial use for "written order for money drawn on a bank".

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You mean, like this?

 

35ELr4ds7C1u.jpg

 

[edit] it came up in a Bogan Passport search and the image I thought I was copying looked like a passport.. looks like this one backfired on me, which has nothing to do with who is in the photo

Edited by Jerry_Atrick
Because I am sometimes a drongo
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And

Don,t forget those EXTRA deductions for using their '  tap & go  ' service.

$1.42 for only two transactions.

My wife didnt even know . That you had to put in or swipe your card to use free efpos, then push the savings button  !.

spacesailor

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  • 2 weeks later...

Had a Chinese take=away last night. Must be one of the last businesses to only accept cash. First time in about 3 months I have had to carry cash in my wallet.

 

They have a monopoly around here, and the way they charge, the relatively small electronic payments fees would not make a dent. Me thinks there may be another reason they only accept cash...

Edited by Jerry_Atrick
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