Does Venmo Hold Moochers Accountable, Or Let Cheapskates Show Their True Colors?

Image courtesy of frankieleon

Between PayPal’s Venmo, Facebook’s Messenger, Chase’s Quickpay, Square’s Cash, and other money-sending services, there’s no shortage of ways for friends to quickly send each other a few dollars to split the check at dinner. But with the convenience of such apps, are we forgetting our manners or just finally holding our friends accountable? 

While this ability to quickly move money around without having cash in your wallet certainly… party, it can also be a source of conflict or create hurt feelings.

Quartz recently shared the stories of several Venmo users who detail how the money-sending service has transformed some friendships from a give-and-take to a business transaction.

For example, one person says she stopped by her friend’s home for a little Netflix watching and wine drinking. At the end of the evening, she says she was surprised to receive a notification from Venmo showing her friend was asking for $6 to cover the cost of the split wine.

In another instance, a Venmo user tells Quartz that a roommate charged her $3.32 for a shared garden rake.

It’s not uncommon for roommates to split costs, such as rent, utilities, or grocery bills, but when it comes to a physical object, it can be harder to swallow.

“When he moves, am I supposed to ask for my $3 back?” the woman asks Quartz. “Venmo is making everyone stingy and strange.”

Sure, receiving an email requesting reimbursement for a glass of offered wine or a shared rake might be jarring, but there’s another side to the money-sharing story.

When you go out with friends you probably expect them to do the right thing and offer to split the bill. That’s just common courtesy, but we all have that friend: the one who conveniently never has cash or promises to get the next one but never does.

With money-sharing apps, consumers can now hold these friends accountable.

Quartz also points out that while money-sharing apps might disrupt long-held feelings about friends and money, it can also bring out the generosity of people.

One woman tells Quartz that she’s known friends to discreetly send funds to others having a difficult time making ends meet to put toward rent or bills.

Venmo is turning our friends into petty jerks [Quartz]

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