Daily #31: Always right

I’ve returned from my Christmas party! I had a great time; the company was good and everyone stayed safe. However, I did proceed to sleep for around 12 hours after getting home, which brought me well into the afternoon. My body clock is a little off.

Today, I wanted to get my thoughts down after a discussion I had with my partner. We’re both 22 years old, and we are ‘doing quite well’ for our age – we both have stable, full time jobs in fields we’re passionate about, we own a house, and we’re very financially stable.

The reason the discussion occurred is that we finally got around to ordering some furniture. We decided to split the bill through Klarna, rather than paying it as a lump sum. If you’re not aware, Klarna is a company which allows you to ‘buy now, pay later’ or split the bill on goods. It’s known for its very relaxed soft credit checks which is how it determines whether you’re eligible to use it. For this reason, it’s heavily used by young adults and students, buying clothes and other small goods.

As we’d never used it before, signing up reminded us of an article we’d seen on BBC news. I think it highlights an emerging issue, especially among young adults, wherein people are loathe to take responsibility for their own decisions. The article in question describes a student who ‘missed a few payments’ on her buy now, pay later purchases, which subsequently caused her credit score to decrease. The way the title and article is worded makes the student look like a victim in this situation.

My partner and I are quite financially responsible, so it baffles me that someone our age can be so oblivious to something which seems so obvious. The headline reads ‘Klarna messed up my credit score’, however it was the act of borrowing money and not paying it back which achieved that. The problem we’re seeing is that she says the company should be more upfront about how the missed payments can affect her score. When we signed up to our Klarna agreement, we were faced with a huge list of terms and conditions – as one might expect. I personally disagree with the idea that companies should accommodate to a level which absolves everyone of personal responsibility.

If one looks at the news, they are likely to come across multiple cases of this – something bad happens to someone, and rather than accept that they made a mistake, they immediately place blame on the company or establishment that facilitated it.

There was another story in the news last week in which a young boy fell off a skating aid on an ice rink and suffered an injury to his hand. In response, his father suggested that the skating aids (plastic animals for small children to sit on) be equipped with seatbelts. Of course, I’m not a parent so I can only speak as an observer, but again, the father should have been ensuring his child did not fall off the aid. It is not necessarily the establishment’s fault that the injury occurred.

Of course, a fair amount of these cases are in pursuit of monetary compensation, but it highlights a mentality which echoes the ‘customer is always right’ sentiment that has always been present in society. Rather than accept that one might have made a mistake, or made a poor decision, the blame is shifted onto anything that could be construed as liable for it. As someone who is responsible for their own actions, the subsequent regulations and shutdowns that are triggered by these complaints irk me. I’m not sure why I need to lose access to a useful tool or service because someone else made a poor decision.

I feel like I’m being close-minded with this. However, I’m more criticising the people that blame their issues on things outside their control than the people that make mistakes. Otherwise I’d be criticising everybody.

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