Imagine that your cell phone was strangely credited with $30. And in the process of celebrating, the phone rang and behold an individual begging you to refund the money, that she substituted a false digit in the course of crediting her account. Would you return the money? Survey has shown that most people will not. Most Men are thieves when nobody is watching. Or are you not a Thief?
kinda a strange example
But say you find 20 dollars on the ground, how are you to find who lost it?
If I found a wallet with ID I'd return it.
My immediate reaction - no, I wouldn't give the individual the money, because I'd immediately be worried it was a scam. If I was called by the phone company, that would be a different matter - and then, I wouldn't have to do anything, because they would be able to simply cancel the credit.
That has nothing to do with my honesty.
Do unto others as you wish them do unto you James!!
James - no doubts, I'd return the money equivalent. Simple as that. Not knowing is one thing, what do you do? But knowing is another.
I would give the money back, because if that happened to me I would want my money returned. In essence, live life by the golden rule.
There are a lot of moral men out there, it seems.
I'd expect no less from a guy with your avatar.
I'd probably do the same.
A friend of mine had his Bank account credited with a large amount of money by a bank - in Error. If that was you James, what would you do? You haven't really answered the question.
Another Hubber also shared a similar experience in a comment on one of my Hubs.
What's your story?
Am surprise this happened in Italy. I wanted to recharge my sister's account, only for the Attendant to miss a digit. She called the man, he agreed for a refund. And that was the end. Since i had not mastered the language, i could not argue further. 20 Euro gone.
Boomerang is my own principle of life. If i take something that does not belong to me, somebody will definitely take mine in the future.
A singular (and even multiple) occurrence is not a ground for such a broad generalization I would think. Losing a faith in humanity in general and yourself in particular over 20 euros looks - umm - petty.
I'm not sure the honest people get enough press. My son lost his wallet on a Boston subway train, and he was fortunate enough to have someone turn it in with all its contents. The same son lost his cell phone (a couple of years later ) at a commuter rail station. The guy who found the phone called me and wanted to let "the owner" know that he was wrapping the phone in newspaper and sticking it behind some sign.
If I got extra money on my phone, and someone called to tell me what it was; I'd call the phone company and ask how it could be straightened out. Unless, for some reason, I knew the person (bills can get mixed up when people with the same last name live in the same house) I'd probably think twice before just mailing cash to a stranger (I don't know why, if I saw the extra credit - but you never really know what kind of scams can go on.) In any case, if I got the credit and later learned where it most likely came from, I wouldn't try to keep it.
I would be incredibly wary that this was a scam. Changing credits one way or another is a fairly simple thing to do by someone who can hack, con, or has access to the system. That goes through the phone company so I would insist the person go through the phone company. I would verify that I had an unaccounted for credit to the company, but thats it. I don't think this makes me a thief, I think this makes me practical. I would happily have the phone company recover the credit over to them, and would not begrudge them whatsoever. I also don't think I have a lack of faith in humanity. I trust most people, especially face to face.
If all the facts were true, I would return the money. What doesn't belong to me, doesn't belong to me.
I have both returned a wallet and had one returned (in both cases by mail, with postage paid by the finder, not with funds from the wallet)... meaning the "right" thing actually cost each of us money during the respective events, thus providing TWO instances of men being honest. I believe my two instances provide twice the evidence of your single one, and therefore you may rest at ease knowing that the empirical data prove been a shadow of a doubt that men are honest.
If I was absolutely broke and would not have bought $30 worth of credit, then no I would not refund it. I would instead apologise but say that I would never purposely go out and purchase $30 of credit in my financial predicament.
If on the other hand I had plenty of money and regularly topped up my mobile, then I would offer to send the person a cheque. Just as long as they were very polite/sincere and sounded grateful for me going through the inconvenience. I guess that you never know the other persons financial situation, so if I could afford to return the money then I would - just in case they relied on that credit for the whole month or something.
One thing is for sure, I would expect them to remain gracious throughout; an aggressive voice on the other end of the line demanding their $30 back would have no chance of getting a favour from me and I would make sure that I spent that $30 of credit on something stupid - like calling them to discuss the reasons for not returning the $30 of credit.
I would give it back provided I knew it wasn't a scam. If I found a wallet I would absolutely return it, same with a phone, money anything. I know there are people that wouldn't in the world, but I like to think there are lots of people like me that would. It keeps me happy believing that!
Anyone taking money from the government is a thief by proxy. Taxes are monies taken by force from one and given to others.
And I would return the money . I have many faults but being a thief Is not one of them . I believe In karma. An on top of that I like a clear conscience , It Is the best pillow you can sleep with at night !
With your cellphone crediting problem example, you should return it.
I would definitely return the money, after making sure that my account was credited for sure. Whenever I get too much change back, I alway let the cashier know by returning it, whether it is a quarter or 10 dollars. Whoever said the conscience is clear, I agree. That is how I feel about giving back money that does not belong to me.
I have found the opposite. Almost all people are honest. I spent over 30 years in business and only met a few bad apples in a very large cross section of the community from bikers to lawyers.
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