Corporate suicide?

M@elstrom

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Well even if someone here has an occupation you don't care for or some political belief you disagree with it matters little because they are usually pretty cool otherwise and they like flashlights.
We have Politicians here? 😧


I really get more bothered by some users here that make bids on Surefires or Maglites on Ebay when I'm trying to get them for as little as possible.
That's what you get for trying to outbid me! 😋
 

IMA SOL MAN

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Awfully curious about the specifics here as shoplifting has become both a cause célèbre in some quarters and an improbable excuse that retailers have raised during earnings calls to excuse poor performance with scant evidence while other operational deficiencies loom large (ala huge inventories and poor internal procedures). I've little doubt that corner cases can be found - both in terms of policy and retailers being ruined by shoplifting - but I'm a tad skeptical that this is a widespread blanket policy or key details are missing.
 

idleprocess

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And, almost without exception, no facility has the actual means (short of staff laying hands forcibly on a thief) to halt unlawful removal of property from the facility.
I'm responding because the language you're using - terms like erase and halt - suggest absolutes, unattainable in the world of reality where human foibles are endemic and cost-effectiveness is an imperative. I'm not going to shop at an establishment taking the stance that declining a blanket receipt check is - in their eyes - grounds for invoking shopkeeper's privilege and I certainly don't want to live in a society that accepts the premise.

A given level of shrinkage - be it theft, spoilage, damage - is built into pricing. Manage the vectors to below an acceptable noise floor, then - like any other process remaining within the acceptable bounds of a statistical process control chart - stop making adjustments.

There are certainly situations where shoplifting has become a significant economic hardship - even an existential hardship - for establishments. I suspect that there are some targeted solutions that can be deployed - case-by-case changes in procedures, layout changes, or persuading law enforcement to investigate and prosecute suspects.
 

pnwoutdoors

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I'm responding because the language you're using - terms like erase and halt - suggest absolutes, unattainable ...

I used that language because, in reality, that's what's aimed for. Of course absolutely zero "shrinkage," theft, missing items, etc, isn't possible. Not where humans and human-designed and -operated systems and controls are involved.


There are certainly situations where shoplifting has become a significant economic hardship - even an existential hardship - for establishments. I suspect that there are some targeted solutions that can be deployed - case-by-case changes in procedures, layout changes, or persuading law enforcement to investigate and prosecute suspects.

My point was, there are only so many spots during the "sale" process that checks and verification can be made, to avoid such errors. And there are only so many things a shop can reasonably do to eliminate most (or all) of thefts where somebody's going to do a smash-and-grab or a cowardly-hiding-and-sneaking theft. Won't get all of them, via such architectural ingress/egress alterations and the related procedural changes, but it can sure help.

I laugh a little whenever I see a "standard" setup being thieved blind, but where the owner is squalling about what such thievery is doing to his business. (As though it's somebody else's responsibility to craft guards and constraints against it.) Yet, taking nearly no steps to actually guard against such things. Can't effectively protect what you don't bother effectively protecting, in short.

Personal responsibility. The missing element. If they want increased inability for robbers and thieves to ply their trades, then they should implement increasingly tough-to-surmount elements. Else, suffer the result.
 

jtr1962

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Personal responsibility. The missing element. If they want increased inability for robbers and thieves to ply their trades, then they should implement increasingly tough-to-surmount elements. Else, suffer the result.
I think the issue for many retailers is the more hardened their store is to theft, the less inviting it is to customers. They have to weigh potential lost customers against shrinkage. After all, nobody wants to shop in a store that resembles a prison.
 

jtr1962

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I really can't bring myself to believe the social issues that divide us so deeply are simultaneously simple enough to have only two sides of debate, yet so complex that no mutually acceptable position can ever be found. And, not only do all of our issues seem to have only two sides of debate, they all fall neatly and predictably into red team/blue team, complete with cognitive dissonance and inconsistent ideologies across the board.
They're not. More and more I'm thinking all these distractions the politicians love to foist on us about relatively small issues are so people don't notice their utter failure to solve larger ones. And also to enact unpopular policies which mostly benefit their campaign contributors. Turning people against each other while you're doing something unsavory is one of the oldest tactics in the books.
It's almost as if solving these social issues would eliminate the need for the people who are paid to work on solving them...
That might be part of it also but I think you're giving these people way too much credit. Most of them aren't smart enough to see enough moves ahead to where maybe if they really fix a problem they're putting themselves out of a job.
In this hypothetical thought experiment, it's principle. I've received my item, I've handed over my money, the transaction is done, but now I'm accused of shoplifting and detained. I have neither obligation nor desire to bear the embarrassment of a false accusation because an automated system decided that out of everyone else leaving the store, I in particular, am a thief.
I don't disagree but I think a wise person knows when to pick their fights. A former friend of mine wasted his time filing complaints with the BBB when a take-out place rounded his change down instead of up. They did state they round cash transactions to the nearest nickel. Can't remember the exact numbers, but it was something like the total was $8.96, he gave them $9 thinking he would get back a nickel, and got back nothing. He mentioned it but the cashier refused to give him a nickel. Technically, he was shortchanged four cents. Regardless, this is something I definitely would have let go.

On the other hand, I have a folder full of exchanges between me and the various entities handling my student loans. Besides the amounts in question being well into four figures, they literally violated the promissory notes multiple times.

I would certainly get annoyed being falsely accused of theft, but given the choice of just pulling out a receipt, versus a possible false arrest, I'd choose the former. I get the principal, but even though the charges would be dismissed, the punishment for me would be the system.
On a completely unrelated note... I love this forum. I can't think of a single other forum where discourse like this could happen without it turning into a ruthless mudslinging contest full of personal attacks and ill will.

CPF, uniting the world through lighting the world.
Same here. In the end even if we're on completely opposite ends of the political spectrum we still have 95% of stuff in common.
 

pnwoutdoors

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I think the issue for many retailers is the more hardened their store is to theft, the less inviting it is to customers. They have to weigh potential lost customers against shrinkage. After all, nobody wants to shop in a store that resembles a prison.

With shops, it certainly needn't resemble a "prison." (That's the extreme end of things, and clearly isn't required.) But these open-air, nearly-impossible-to-guard exit routes don't need to exist in the form that's so typical. Almost never is a newly-designed building crafted with any clear eye toward ability to "defend" against such things. Which, in a shop that believes it can mark-up pricing to cover all such costs, might not matter to them much. But which gets harder to explain with a "sensitive" location like a K-12 school for example.
 
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TPA

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I wish we'd do what they do in UK banks -- a vestibule where only one door at a time can be open, and the tellers have a button where they can remotely lock both. I've been told it cut down on bank robberies substantially.
 

silat

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Shrinkage has been a factor in commerce since its beginning of which shoplifting is one component. While it's ideally zero, in reality it's to be pushed below a ceiling value and written off as it's a component of pricing.

I gather that shopkeeper's privilege has been codified into law more or less everywhere. The Texas statute is remarkably concise:

Case law around the privilege has likely made the calculus more complex with the procedural expedience leaning towards doing nothing in most cases.

A co-worker's parents owned a convenience store in a rough neighborhood in Dallas and he'd often take partial days to tend the store whenever there were scheduling issue with regular employees. He described developing a sense for when it was worth it to ignore vs intervene. A wrinkle outside of potential litigation was that regulars would occasionally five-finger stuff - a real dilemma as you don't want anyone stealing from you, but if you dropped the hammer on them you risk losing not only that customer but many more when they bad-mouth you to everyone they know.


Awfully curious about the specifics here as shoplifting has become both a cause célèbre in some quarters and an improbable excuse that retailers have raised during earnings calls to excuse poor performance with scant evidence while other operational deficiencies loom large (ala huge inventories and poor internal procedures). I've little doubt that corner cases can be found - both in terms of policy and retailers being ruined by shoplifting - but I'm a tad skeptical that this is a widespread blanket policy or key details are missing.


The Amazon Go model is a pure market pilot at this point in time. The amount of technology and computing power required to make it work is not sustainable outside of a well-funded experiment at the present time. When it does become sustainable I expect it will initially be used for high-end retail - ala Neiman Marcus - with solid margins and a customer base that demands service over process.

What is likely to happen in the future in riskier environments will essentially be giant vending machines - all merchandise secured within and delivered post-payment.


Or Service Merchandise for that matter.
And thievery still happens in Saudi Arabia. And so do all the other crimes you can imagine. So that kind of takes the wind out of your sails on the punishment stops crime.
 

pnwoutdoors

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I wish we'd do what they do in UK banks -- a vestibule where only one door at a time can be open, and the tellers have a button where they can remotely lock both. I've been told it cut down on bank robberies substantially.

Yup. For any high-dollar retailing shop, it's hard to claim such a thing couldn't help. (Same with any high-value content venue of any sort, I'd think, such as a K-12 school where the "contents" are literally irreplaceable.)

For a good-quality jewelry shop or bank, for example, it'd certainly make it vastly tougher to forcibly enter en masse or forcibly remove products. Can apply to entry and exit. Make your purchase, get double-checked at door #1, get authorized to enter the "choke point" zone for exit through door #2. Some customer might certainly whine about the supposed delay, and some might even whine it's an affront and insult, but it's the shop's product and the shop's security, and they've also got a responsibility to ensure customers are protected and the riffraff remains incapable as possible of damaging the shop/inventory/customers.

Other than the design spec for the entry/egress area, along with a variant of surveillance and procedures that'd go along with such a thing, it's hard to see a major downside.
 

IMA SOL MAN

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Yup. For any high-dollar retailing shop, it's hard to claim such a thing couldn't help. (Same with any high-value content venue of any sort, I'd think, such as a K-12 school where the "contents" are literally irreplaceable.)

For a good-quality jewelry shop or bank, for example, it'd certainly make it vastly tougher to forcibly enter en masse or forcibly remove products. Can apply to entry and exit. Make your purchase, get double-checked at door #1, get authorized to enter the "choke point" zone for exit through door #2. Some customer might certainly whine about the supposed delay, and some might even whine it's an affront and insult, but it's the shop's product and the shop's security, and they've also got a responsibility to ensure customers are protected and the riffraff remains incapable as possible of damaging the shop/inventory/customers.

Other than the design spec for the entry/egress area, along with a variant of surveillance and procedures that'd go along with such a thing, it's hard to see a major downside.
I'd say the "downside" is that a high volume fire exit would have to exist. The problem with that is, people have a natural tendency to try to exit a place from the point that they entered. So, in the event of a fire, you may find a bunch of dead bodies bunched-up at the choke point, even though you have a high volume exit available elsewhere.
 

jtr1962

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Yup. For any high-dollar retailing shop, it's hard to claim such a thing couldn't help. (Same with any high-value content venue of any sort, I'd think, such as a K-12 school where the "contents" are literally irreplaceable.)

For a good-quality jewelry shop or bank, for example, it'd certainly make it vastly tougher to forcibly enter en masse or forcibly remove products. Can apply to entry and exit. Make your purchase, get double-checked at door #1, get authorized to enter the "choke point" zone for exit through door #2. Some customer might certainly whine about the supposed delay, and some might even whine it's an affront and insult, but it's the shop's product and the shop's security, and they've also got a responsibility to ensure customers are protected and the riffraff remains incapable as possible of damaging the shop/inventory/customers.

Other than the design spec for the entry/egress area, along with a variant of surveillance and procedures that'd go along with such a thing, it's hard to see a major downside.
Using polycarbonate instead of glass for display cases is another thing which would help. Thieves couldn't do a "smash and grab".
 

pnwoutdoors

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I'd say the "downside" is that a high volume fire exit would have to exist. The problem with that is, people have a natural tendency to try to exit a place from the point that they entered. So, in the event of a fire, you may find a bunch of dead bodies bunched-up at the choke point, even though you have a high volume exit available elsewhere.

Sure. A couple of clearly-marked fire escape routes would need to exist, if the place is going to have any number of people. And any chock-point type zone would have to be capable of being left wide open in the event of great need to eject many people (as at the outbreak of a fire).

In the case of a larger facility (instead of a single shop), such as a K-12 school or an office building, similarly a number of suitable crashbar-type fire exists would need to exist. But during normal operations those routes would need to be easily secured, effectively monitored, ensured they couldn't get left open (accidentally or deliberately), and so on.

Isn't really a negative, though. It's just part of a thoughtful design that doesn't design-in failure (of defensibility) from the outset ... like most facilities' buildings.
 

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