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Entries in credit cards (2)

Monday
Nov172008

A Cashless Future Society? (1968)

The July 24, 1968 Las Cruces Sun-News (Las Cruces, NM) ran this piece by Jack Lefler about the possibility of a cashless society that would use a single identification card.

NEW YORK (AP) - Want to hunt polar bear in Alaska, entertain your mother-in-law at a Paris restaurant, rent a house-boat for a Mississippi cruise, hire a big-name orchestra for your daughter's wedding reception—and charge it?

 

All you need is a credit card.

These are some of the more bizarre ways you can use a credit card but their purchasing power covers the whole gamut of goods and services.

It's estimated that Americans are carrying 200 million credit cards and using them to spend around $50 billion a year.

As a result of the proliferation of credit cards, there has been widespread speculation about the possibilities of a checkless, cashless society in the future.

Some bankers envision nationwide system In which a single identification card would be used in place of all checks and almost all cash.

But American Express, a big name in the credit card industry, says, "The single-card system couldn't be further from reality today. The most striking feature of our present system of transferring money is the multiplicity of credit cards."

Credit cards as we know them today were pioneered in 1950 by Diners' Club, which was created with 200 members, an initial investment of $18,000 and a handful ot restaurants In the New York City area. Within a year it had grown to 10,000 members who could charge at more than 1,000 establishments.

Credit cards now fall into three categories:

—Travel and entertainment. Operators in this field are American Express, Diners' Club and Carte Blanche. These cards are held primarily by business and professional men.

—Private label. Oil companies, airlines, hotels, car rental companies and department stores offer these cards primarily to promote their services or products.

—Revolving credit cards. These cards, largely regional or local in nature, are issued mainly by banks and financial organizations and are meant primarily for use by housewives for shopping.

The credit card companies derive their revenue from discounts from establishments which accept the cards in lieu of cash and from membership fees. Some credit card practices have come in for criticism recently, mainly because of the mailing of unsolicited cards by banks and some others in the revolving credit field.


Read more:
Credit Card Rings (1964)
Online Shopping (1967)
Prelude to a Great Depression (The Chronicle Telegram, 1929)

 

Thursday
Sep132007

Credit Card Rings (1964)


The May 24, 1964 New York Times Magazine ran this ad from Sheaffer Pens. Marty Z was kind enough to send this my way, and mentions that it may not be too far off from the microprojectors featured at CES this year.

The text of the ad appears below. Notice the fine print of the ad which tells you to "Ask for your copy of 'What will it be like - the 21st Century?' with descriptions of inventions of the future." I'd love to see that brochure.

Think back to 1964, the year you received that extraordinary gift, your Sheaffer LIFETIME Pen - the year you started enjoying guaranteed writing performance for life.

 

Right away you liked that 14K gold point - the way it glided over paper, the way it captured your kind of writing. And still does, because inlaying adds strength to this point.

You enjoyed that turned-up tip right from the start, too. It still makes your writing feel more natural. Just as every other feature still delivers the best performance possible - the same performance you admired the first time you touched this amazing point to paper. Can a pen give more than writing pleasure for life?


See also:
Online Shopping (1967)
Prelude to a Great Depression (The Chronicle Telegram, 1929)