Finding Those ‘I Am Not A Robot’ Boxes In A Weird Place

We all have to click those check boxes to prove we’re human, but that’s usually reserved for online-use only, until this woman’s story.

By DAVID on May 23, 2018
(Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

So we all have to deal with those “I am not a robot” checkboxes when we’re filling out things online. They’re made to prove, well, that we’re not robots. By “robots,” they actually mean computer software that automatically signs people up for things. There are systems out there that subscribe people to mailing lists, etc, and they just want to cut down on that, really. Anyway, they really only work if you’re human. Then you can click on the box to prove your living status.

One woman encountered one of those checkboxes in a pretty unusual situation. She was shopping for a new car. These days when you buy cars, you can go through the process online. You can schedule test drives, submit paperwork, and even apply for credit. We live in a very connected world. However, she wasn’t doing any of this online. She was at the dealership buying a new car, signing paperwork. Form after form, ID check after ID check, when the salesperson slid one more form in. On the page was just the “I am not a robot” checkbox, and a line for a signature. Yes, she took a pen with her hand, drew a check mark in the box, and signed her name. In front of the salesperson, and the sales manager. She had to prove she wasn’t a robot in person in front of people.

Now, if there were some kind of robot that could go out, interact with people, and sign paperwork, we’re pretty sure it would be “smart” enough to go ahead and check that box too. But this isn’t the year 2100, and while we have realistic robots, they’re still very obvious. Whether it’s just a technicality, or a serious lapse in basic common sense on the dealer’s part, people are having to check that box. The dealer admitted that they print the paperwork from a website, and that unless they print the page with the check box they can’t get the rest of the pages to print. But really, just toss that page out. When asked if they would sell a car to a robot, the dealer responded with “if the robot had a social security number and an ID, then [we would] sell it a car.”

Check out some more on the story here.

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