A Moral Dilemma

Monday, November 23rd, 2009 11:50 pm
miss_s_b: Peter Falk as Columbo saying "just one more thing" (Mood: And another thing)
[personal profile] miss_s_b
Inspired by this article in the Graun. You go to pay at a parking meter and it gives you £3 too much change. What do you do?

Poll #1761 Moral Dilemma
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: Just the Poll Creator, participants: 13

What would you do?

Keep the three quid
10 (76.9%)

Hand it in to someone in charge of the car park or something similar
3 (23.1%)

Leave it in the machine for the next person to have a dilemma over
0 (0.0%)

Something else which I shall explain in the comments
0 (0.0%)

My own answer is the second one, and if that's not possible, the third. I would view it as theft to take the money. Yes, a small theft, with very little chance of any consequence for myself, but theft none the less. Mat says he would take the money, citing the harm principle. I can understand his argument, but it would feel wrong to me to take the money.

What do you lot think?

In other news, because I bitched at Sensei Puddin' on Friday about how my legs were killing me after Thursday's karate session, we did lots more leggy stuff tonight. Or perhaps I am investing myself with too much importance. Either way, my legs are killing me again.

Still, it's doing me good, and I am feeling the benefit when I'm NOT completely knackered. Healthiness is a good thing.

Climbing tomorrow! Yay!

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Date: Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 02:24 am (UTC)
telegramsam: Mister Flibble is Very Cross (Rimmer)
From: [personal profile] telegramsam
I'd feel bad just taking it too. I've always given back the difference when cashiers give me too much change (because I know if their till doesn't add up at the end of the shift, it's probably coming out of their paycheck) and I would guess it would be similar for this. Or not, I don't really know how car parks work.

But I always feel bad just taking money or expensive things left laying around, even if there aren't any obvious negative consequences to myself. Usually somebody left it by accident and may come back looking for it. I've left things behind that have gotten snatched up before and I know how rotten it feels.

Date: Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 08:35 am (UTC)
ext_51145: (Default)
From: [identity profile] andrewhickey.info
I always give back change to cashiers who've given me too much change, because it'll harm *them*, but if a faulty machine gives me too much change - and if it's a relatively small amount like three quid - I'd keep it on the basis that FAR more often machines (especially payphones) have eaten my money...

Date: Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 08:05 am (UTC)
freddiefraggles: (me - head)
From: [personal profile] freddiefraggles
Once, at Peterborough railway station, the car park meter paid me £7 in order to park there. Considering this is a £10/day sort of car park, and I'd used it three times in the preceding fortnight, I decided it was the car park's way of saying "thanks for coming by again" and took the money.

It's a faceless machine. If it's going wrong and giving the wrong change, that's the people who run the machine's problem, not mine.

Date: Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 08:53 am (UTC)
andrewducker: (Default)
From: [personal profile] andrewducker
If there was someone to hand the money to then I would. If not then I'd just take the cash - on the grounds that I'm as deserving as the next person, who will almost certainly take the money.

Date: Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 03:56 pm (UTC)
gominokouhai: (Default)
From: [personal profile] gominokouhai
If I was to give it back, it would have to go to the right person. I'm not giving it to the car park attendant because he'll just keep it. And if I phone the Council I need to speak to somebody high enough up the ladder that they're not just going to say juskeepittheninnit, 'smorenmyjob'sworth.

The free market economy values my time at £7.35 per hour. Should be more, but there it is. So, for the sake of three quid, if it's going to take me more than twenty minutes to return the money—not counting phone calls, stamps, and whatever sundry expenses are required—then I'm operating at a net loss, and I didn't ask for this job, so that money's mine.

Date: Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 06:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] paulatpingu.livejournal.com
£3 is small enough to be in the lucky/unlucky category for me. I wouldn't bother complaining if I lost £3, so equally I wouldn't feel too bad about taking the £3 if it came my way.

Call it swings and roundabouts; it'll balance over time.

Obviously if it was, I dunno, £50, or if there was a parking attendant person right next to me I could hand it to and point out the problem, that would be different. But otherwise, no. I'd pocket it.

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