Some months ago, a popular high street bank near my work (HSBC actually, I don’t know why I’m being secretive here) was refurbished dramatically. It became rather futuristic looking, a vision of the future that would make Orwell proud. I didn’t like it but as it wasn’t my bank and I usually only used the machines outside, I thought no more of it until today when I went to use the Currency Exchange.
Gone is the nice man behind a counter who counts out currency while making pleasantries about your trip.!
Replaced by a machine!
A machine that allows you to withdraw different currencies but annoyingly restricts you to your normally maximum cash withdrawal amount, rather than it being a card transaction. It made no attempt at conversation and didn’t wish me Bon Voyage or anything.
Then afterwards, I go to Tesco where I scan my shopping and am told by a harsh robot voice to place my goods in the bagging area and insists mechanically that I use their plastic bags –as it won’t let me put my own bag anywhere near and if I move the shopping towards it, lights start to flash and she gets over-excited.
We are all being replaced by machines. And I’ve not even mentioned automated phone systems.