I have had a bank card for well over 10 years that I use on a regular basis in stores, ATM's and super markets and the sad truth is that I don't know how to swipe my card 'correctly.'
The card is rectangular giving me a theoretical 25% probability of inserting the card correctly and a whoping 75% chance of doing it wrong. However I tend to do a little better because I've at least learned to insert the card colored side up. However on ATM's where I either need to swipe the card my odds fall back to 25%. If I need to coordinate the card orientation with a designated swiping direction or motion I'm in serious trouble.
What's the problem?
Let's say that the 'proper' way to insert the card is logo up, with the magnetic stripe to the right side. Let's say you want to draw an illustration to help people. If you draw the front of the card you don't necessarily help people because their card may look completely different and if you draw the back of the card to show the side with the stripe you make it impossible to determine the proper way to reorient the image in order to insert the card.
But even as I applaud this design I’m left asking myself:
“Why should I care about the orientation?”
When I hand my ATM card to a teller at a bank I’ve never had the teller reject the card because I handed it to him in the wrong orientation. Would it be so hard to have four magnetic strip readers and allow me to shove the card in any way I want?