May 31, 2011

Gold can only be bought with cash. Please Select!

Chris Skinner talks about his surreal experience with a gold ATM:

The idea is that you put cash in and get gold out.

So nice.

I plumped for the cheapest gold nugget priced at £100 and inserted my MasterCard.

Oh no, it didnít work.

I guess thatís because you need to go to the other ATM to get cash to come back and get your gold.

With gold now enjoying its resurgence in notoriety as the alternate world currency, it's probably time to refresh our memory of the May Scale, reproduced below.

'May Scale' of monetary hardness
Street cash, US dollars
Street cash, euro currencies, japan
Street cash, other regions
Interbank transfers of various sorts (wires etc), bank checks
personal checks
Consumer-level electronic account transfers (eg bPay)
Business-account-level retail transfer systems
Paypal and similar 'new money' entities, beenz
Credit cards

Fig. 1. The May Scale

With such a scale at hand, it is easy to see why the gold ATM doesn't take credit cards. Even without the May Scale tucked in your wallet, just in case you thought to whip it out and read out the laws of economics to your ATM, this one gives you handy instructions:

Posted by iang at May 31, 2011 03:27 AM | TrackBack

I would suppose the May scale comes from Timothy May, but am unable to source it. The earliest references to the May scale that I can find do not sound like Tim's distinctive style.

Posted by: James A Donald at June 1, 2011 03:28 AM

No, it comes from JP May, an entrepreneur from the halcyon days of the first gold currency rush, 1998 - 2005 or so. I'm not sure what he's doing these days, but his insights changed the landscape in this and other ways.

Curiously, it also took me a long time to find it!


Posted by: Iang at June 1, 2011 05:46 AM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?

Hit preview to see your comment as it would be displayed.