Why going cashless is not such a good idea

For a lot of us of a certain age (let’s say for all of us who vividly remember the pre-internet years), cash has been an integral part of our lives. It was there when we bought our first candy bar, our first beer, our first taxi ride. Heck, it was there when we got our first payday. That might be the reason some of us are surprised there are people walking among us who don’t carry a dime with them.

Why would they? The rise of contactless payment and digital wallets is rendering cash useless in a lot of cities. In fact, some of us who might still be used to paying with “real” cash would feel like aliens in a place like Sweden, which has been called “the ultimate cashless society.” And though the Nordic country is still singled out as a rarity for going the cashless route, it won’t be too long before more countries join it down the same path.

What’s more, that might be even sooner than anyone could anticipate. Experts say that increasing bank charges and many branches closing down could force the financial system to ditch cash altogether before a lot of us are ready to make the shift. Besides, younger generations are accustomed to paying through digital means in a way that feels second nature to them.

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The cashless society from an ethical point of view

The debate about the move towards a cashless society has been at the center of the scene for several years, now. Various angles have been taken by economists, politicians, banking institutions and sociologists. Beyond the technicalities of the debate, lies the question of freedom, of inter-citizen solidarity and of governmental responsibility. The debate cannot remain in the hands of financial specialists, it is first and foremost an ethical, political and societal issue.

The cashless society from an ethical point of view

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