Every profession has its line of "dirty little secrets" that aren't all that secret. Like everyone knows GameStop intentionally tries to shill used games on people because the profit margins on trade-ins are huge.
Then there's the world of consumer tech: tons of smartphone manufacturers intentionally push out software updates and design their devices to become "obsolete" after a two- or three-year cycle so you can keep spending $600 every couple of years on a new phone, even though the one you have could technically run fine for much longer.
A recent AskReddit post had employees from a bunch of industries come together to share their down dirty little secrets, and some of them sound downright criminal.
1. Surgeons use older techniques out of "comfort."
I'm not sure if this is a "little" secret, but many/most surgeons will prefer older and worse techniques to newer and better ones. Not that newer is always better, but there are still a frightening number of surgeons who haven't learned minimally invasive techniques or their hospital hasn't moved to computer assisted surgical equipment.
If you're going to get a surgery it is often better to specifically travel to a place with a "better" doctor in the field, if only because their hospital is more likely to have updated equipment and the surgeon has usually been trained better.
Beyond that, anytime you can be filmed during surgery, for medical education or any reason, elect to do so. When a surgeon is being filmed it's more likely they'll double and triple check their work and follow the procedure more avidly (many end up using shortcuts when not filmed.)
2. Camp counselors are always losing kids.
Summer camp director. No one on staff is ever 100% sure what’s going on, there’s a 70% chance we think your kid is an asshole, and losing kids for 15-60 minutes at a time is a little more common than we’d like admit.
3. Nursing homes know when the inspectors are dropping by.
Nursing homes somehow always know when they are going to be visited by the state. They have plenty of time to get their $#!* together, overstaff for days. The administrators and office people will actually work on the floor that would never do otherwise. Things are great until the moment the state reps leave then you're back to being understaffed and overworked. Its a common complaint but people are absolutely not getting the care they need.
4. Wash the top of your cans, people.
I don't know if it's a dirty secret as much as common sense when you think about it, but having worked in a warehouse that stores beer cans, I'd say that you should wash the top of any can you drink from, as it may have been sat on, climbed on, touched by filthy hands, and had mice run across it, and if nothing else was probably covered in layers of dust.
5. Take it from a farmer: produce needs, needs, needs to be washed.
I work on a farm. When they say you should wash your produce thoroughly at home, they're not joking.
Most people cannot believe the amount of bugs we find in triple washed spinach and organic greens. Raspberries, broccoli, and asparagus are absolutely infested.
6. Before you rent a car, you should know this.
When you rent a vehicle to go one-way, you will most likely be getting a car that's either high mileage, has a weird smell/stain, or possible mechanical issue.
The branch has to pay to fix the car so it's usually easier to pass the buck.
Make sure you do a thorough inspection before leaving the lot.
7. Making money selling books sucks, unless...
I worked for several years in book publishing.
Being a published fiction author almost always isn't a real job. A good number of books to sell for an author would be 3,000 in a year. (Only a ~1% of fiction authors hit this. Nonfiction is higher.)
But royalties on a $16 trade paperback or a $4 ebook come out to about $1 per book for the author. (50% royalty for ebook. $2 for amazon*, $1 for publisher, $1 for author) and (10% royalty for trade paper $8 for bookstore, ~$7 for publisher, $1 for author. Note publisher has distribution and other costs that come out of that $7.)
So selling 3,000 books (which puts you in the top 1% of fiction sales) nets you a whopping $3000 a year.
8. Always go with the "value brand".
The value brand is, in fact, actually, without a doubt, made and distributed by (insert company name) the owner of (brand which costs 50% more).
9. Cooks/chefs can do this, as long as they don't spit in my food.
A lot of times, when you request modifications to your food in a restaurant, the cooks are often making fun of you or becoming irrationally angry.
10. No website is actually secure.
Your favorite websites and services are held together with bubblegum and baling twine behind the scenes. Security and best practices cost time and money, but don't have direct return on investment or impact on client satisfaction, so why bother?
This includes your bank, the government, and anyone else you think would know better.
11. No, supplies are not limited.
Once had a job as an inbound telemarketer — I was one of the folks who answered when you called up the 800-number on the infomercial.
When you call up one of those numbers, you're not talking to somebody directly at the company. Instead it's a third-party company that takes calls for that product, plus a bunch of other products from a bunch of other unrelated companies.
When they say that "the first ten callers will get this extra bonus* ..." well — they have no way to track that. Whatever bonus that's being advertised? That's going to anybody who calls, regardless. The "first ten callers" thing is a psychological trick to insert some false urgency.
12. Outdoor bar = no ice.
Don’t EVER get ice in your drink at an outdoor bar. We would find dead roaches and sometimes live roaches in the ice maker every morning.
13. Just because it's published, doesn't mean it's good.
The amount of guesswork and "good enough" that goes into solid published scientific data is amazing.
14. TECH SUUPPPOOOOOORRRRRTTT!
Sequence of events on a technical support call:
"I need to research this for you one moment please" = I'm furiously Googling or searching our knowledge base for the answer
"It'll be a little while longer" = That didn't work, now I'm wandering around asking coworkers
"I'll need to delve a bit deeper, may I have a callback number?" = My coworkers have no idea either, now I have to do some real work to find the answer.
15. Shocker: mechanics lie!
If a mechanic fixes your car and fixes the wrong thing first they will just talk you in circles and make you soak up the cost for their $#!* up. Most mechanics are really good talkers and can easily fool a customer and most times the service manager. No one is on your side at a dealership.
16. Fast Food common sense.
Fast food workers don't wash their hands as often as they should and rarely call in sick even if they are sick.
17. Who would even do this?
If you printed nudes at a 1-hour photo lab, everyone who works there seen them. Some people may have made themselves a copy.
18. No one's talking to the manager.
When a car salesman says they'll "ask the manager" about throwing something in, they literally never do. They just go sit in the manager's office for a few minutes.
19. I wonder which organization they could be talking about...
A certain well-known animal rights organizations not only advocates euthanizing shelter animals, they actively euthanize animals themselves. They investigate cases of animal cruelty and occasionally would take possession of the animals, and almost always killed them, regardless of the health or age. It gets worse. They also had a program to capture and kill “feral” cats, although they would kill any cat they caught that wasn’t wearing a collar, even if that cat was acting like a pet and not a scared wild animal (you can usually tell if a cat is a pet or feral if you know what to look for). Their reasoning was that the owners shouldn’t let their cats outside in the first place. They also went to shelters and took a bunch of animals, euthanized them in a van, and dumped their bodies in garbage dumpsters around the area (that one made the news, about 13 years ago, when I worked there).
The worst, though, was the animals that people surrendered to them to save from going into a high kill shelter. People, usually elderly, who couldn’t keep their pets, usually while moving into assisted living, would get this organization to take them. They thought the animals were being given new, wonderful homes. Most of them were killed within days of being surrendered.
So, if you want to be part of animal rights groups or donate money to them, do your research. They advocate for cows and claim that people who use service animals are abusers, but kill hundreds or more dogs and cats every year.
20. Ambulance woes.
Paramedics cannot refuse to transport a patient. If you hurt your knee 8 days ago and want to go we have to take you if you call 911.
We are also likely the only ambulance in your area, and if someone has a real emergency then you will likely have to wait 5-10+ more minutes in the city (20-30+ minutes in a rural county) to get the help you need to your location.
We have been unable to save a lot of people because of someone with a grossly non-emergent issue has taken an ambulance out of service in an area.
Some instances I’ve had: “I just feel bad.”, cut finger on an open can lid, bed bugs, I threw up once, bug crawled in my ear, “I just want to get checked out” is a very popular one. Police pepper sprayed my baby (boyfriend just got arrested and baby is happy and giggling on the couch), wait at the ER was too long so they called 911 in the parking lot of a hospital to go to another ER.
And so on.
21. Higher-ups don't give a darn about the military.
In the military, you learn a lot and get a lot out of it. But know that the only people who seem to appreciate what you actually do is the guys around you in the unit and most civilians. Higher ups and the system do a lot to try and $#!* you out of benefits, opportunities, and accomplishments. half the time, the accomplishments don't mean $#!* to them. You are ALWAYS expendable in the military.
EDIT: To clear it up, I loved my time in the army. I did some really cool things. Just letting others know that it really isn't a job for you if you're looking for some kind of validation from others (to certain degree of course).
EDIT 2: Seeing posts about fellow soldiers, marines, airmen, or whatever going through the same $#!* I went through. I can summarize our pain in one word: oof
This last one was a doozy.