There's A Wrong And Right Way To Use A Divider At A Checkout Grocery Line

Have you ever thought about the divider position when checking out at the grocery store? There is, apparently, a right way to do this — or, at least, that's what someone led thousands to believe on Facebook. Ryan Vaughan works as the chief meteorologist for KAIT 8 in Arkansas. Many of his posts center around topics you'd expect, but one day, he decided to have some fun with a post about checkout lane dividers and probably didn't expect the reaction it got.

Vaughan's Facebook photo caption read, "I'm at the store tonight and noticed some of you don't know how to use the divider. You need to put it long ways to trip the sensor AND keep a distance. Some of y'all use it as a privacy fence." One photo shows the checkout divider parallel with the conveyor belt as the "right" way, while a second photo shows the more common perpendicular way as the "wrong" way.

The post has received more than 22,000 reactions, 13,000 comments, and 10,000 shares. As you might expect, commenters had lots of opinions. The burning question sparked by the post is: Is Vaughan correct? After all, plenty of people make claims on social media every day that could be true without any evidence to support them. 

Most commenters disagreed about divider positions

Among the thousands of comments were followers who disagreed with the claim. One said, "If parallel is wrong, I don't want to be right!" Another said, "Really?! It works well crossway. I've never had a problem with it NOT tripping the sensor!! You crazy dude!" Others claimed they've always been using the divider "wrong" without having any issues with sensors. Ryan Vaughan came to the defense of his "right" method by citing grocery store etiquette, reiterating that putting the divider parallel to the belt "keeps your groceries from being all on top of someone while they're paying."

Cashiers also weighed in on the conversation, because if anyone is going to know how the sensors really work, it would be them, right? One commented, "I've worked in the grocery business for 19 years, and I've never seen this. Lol." Another cashier agreed with part of Vaughan's claim, saying, "I prefer a small diagonal. Doesn't need to be so 'right' as pictured ... but a little does block the sensor."

In response to many of the comments, Vaughan added, "Some of you took this goofy post way too serious," perhaps implying that the post was just a joke that got out of hand. Was it intended to be a joke, or was Vaughan just trying to save face? The next time you're shopping at a grocery store with good customer service, ask around if you want some expert advice.