SportChek cashier: Can I get your postal code?
Me (cranky): NO.
Why would I give SportCheck my POSTAL CODE? Why would they ask like they are entitled to it? As though it’s a normal part of purchasing a fucking pair of shorts? What has the world come to?
Treating retail customers like a data source was never good business. It was always rude and clueless, especially the absurd pretension that collecting totally unnecessary personal information is somehow a going to lead to a better shopping “experience.” But it’s even more daft and insulting than ever now that we’re in the middle of an epidemic of identity theft and credit card fraud, constant headlines about the hacking of vast corporate databases, more malware than legit software, and an exhausting, tedious deluge of passwords and security questions “for your own protection.”
Maybe retailers should consider earning our future business by working on ACTUAL CUSTOMER SERVICE, instead of trying to somehow wring a bit of extra revenue out of me in the form of an abstracted puff of data.
(The audacity of asking is a marvel, but it’s more incredible still that so many people unthinkingly consent.)