Archives: Kinko's

Kinko's is the biggest chain of copyshops in North America. Most of the alt.zines conversation about Kinko's revolves around scamming.

My pals and I hang out at Kinko's surrounding a round table for a few hours, studying and talking and printing and whatever. While we appear to be fairly busy to the people who work there, we are actually closely watching all the people at the machines....for when they leave, they notoriously leave behind their little copy card....usually with a few dollars left in copying. Will found a $40 card a few months ago. I have only found a few $5 cards, but several dozen $1 or less cards. OUr wallets are full. You can copy a whole run of zines if you save up your pick-up-cards. It isn't really scamming anyone, I guess. It dosn't hurt Kinkos 'cause it is payed for already and the people were absent mminded themselves.

Nature Boy:
Reallly! Is there a scam that DOESN'T involve spending all afternoon IN Kinks?! Think of time as money...

T. wEieR:
Kinkos sucks shit period! The one I use to go to here in Vienna, VA is charging $10 per image to scan. Per image. On fucking image. Other Kinkos in the area charge the same. Beyond that, I've had so many problems with them that I will never step in one again (e.g. one day, and this is one of many, many stories, I asked to have some copies done behind the counter where the copiers are usually better...since they were paste-up I also needed the machine....I don't remember the name...that doesn't copy shadows. The guy went ahead and copied them on a regular shitty xerox machine complete with shadows...when I complained...politely....he raised his voice and told me the copies were just the same. I got in this verbal argument with this asshole and ended up leaving without my copies, just because he refused to do as I asked...that was a Kinkos in Crystal City, VA...nice run-on, huh?) They are simply too frustrating to me, too expensive, and too ignorant about what a bitch it is to be a self-publisher. They simply don't care, so why should you?!!! Don't give them any of you service. They are not worthy, and they will screw you over (eventually). That is, unless you work there or know someone who does and who gives a shit. I know I sound angry, but I have many reasons. I just want you all to know that there is life outside of Kinkos at much, much better treatment and cost. The only "benefit" to Kinkos, as I see it, is the 24 hour bullshit, but, for me, that's just not "benefit" enough.

Herman Melville:
>Hey! What are scams #1-33?!
i think some are... #1- steal a copy key (if you're lucky enough, like i still am, to have a kinko's that has keys). #7- have a friend that works there. #23- cut 11x17" mistake pages in half and turn the halves in as mistakes at the counter. i got some of the numbers wrong.

What you do is you go to Kinkos get one of those handy dandy counters that you plug into the machine and make around a thousand photocopies. You then pull out the counter and "accidently" drop it or bang it against a counter. One of three things will happen: 1) the counter will reset to zero 2) it will simply go to smaller number (so you might get 1000 copies for the price of 200) and 3) the number will be so damn high (up in the ten thousands) that you can pull a "Holy shit? there's no way I printen 50,000 copies." you pay and go to teh next closest kinkos, rinse and repeat again. I've done this around 20 times. I was supposed to keep it a secret but I'm no good at that. I printed the lastest issue of my zine by this method 24 pages X 1000 copies.

Hey, The method that I really like (I worked at Kinko's for more than three years) is just get a big magnet that you can pocket. If you hold it up to the bottom of the counter, it'll make the numbers reset. This is something you can do over and over again at the same Kinko's so you don't look like a moron because you end up dropping the counter every time you go in there. Besides, sometimes you have to bang the counter pretty darn hard to get it to move.

Ian C Stewart:
Do any Kinko's still use the dinosaur-age key-counter box things? I thought all the stores were on the card system now...

Valerie Mitchell:
Mine is, fortunately my friend Scott has connections and I get 100 dollar copy cards for nothing. (I gots the hook-up!!)

Dan Halligan:
Washington (or at least Seattle) Kinko's still use the key counters, so not all have switched. -dan

ones in NJ use cards but it seems a lot of other places are switching to other means since all of my kinko's connections can no longer get cards. so if anyone has any conections to share on the re-sale of kinko's cards, let me know, PLEASE. i am actually in rather desperate need of a whole lot of cards right now. thanks

Nationally they're switching back to the counter things from the cards to go with the new "express service" area. This area has all the different paper stocks so people can do the stuff themselves instead of getting 3 copies of something on Rocket Red paper at the full service counter and pulling the larger machines away from larger jobs. That way they can charge more for different types of paper when the customer checks out instead of taking the straight .07 or whatever for each copy off of the card since there is no way for the card reader to subtract different amounts.

Matt Resistance
OK while we are on the topic of scamming Kinko's .... ( By the way , I am not saying that stealing from Kinko's is a GOOD thing or that I have ever participated in actions like these but knowledge is power . So here is the information , but with it what you will . Oh , by the way , everything that I tell you HOW to do in here is illegal and I certain don't want anyone to be a criminal so be CAREFUL . )
        Basically Kinko's has two different copying systems set up , and both are in effect in different areas so if one of these doesn't apply the other will . The first basic method is the fat blue keys they use . To use any of the copiers you need to insert a copy kay and it will count how many copies you make in clicks . Now the easiest two ways to scam this way both required you to go there late at night ( when there are the fewest customers and employees there .) . As always .... BE SURE TO BRING A BACKPACK OR SOMETHING TO CARRY THE SCAMMED COPIES IN ! Also be sure that you use the self service area and it helps if you are framiliar with the copy machines so you don't neeed to ask for help ( the easiest way to get caught is to be noticed )
        1) pick up two copy key and insert one as you make the majority of copies . Stuff the scammed copies into your bag . take the first copy key out and hide it in the self service area . Insert the second key and make about 100 copies and take those and the second counter key up to the cashier to be rung up . Easy enough huh . Also watch out for doing this too often because the majority of Kinko's stores DO have cameras . I will only go in the scam copies once every two months or so .
        2) pick up one key . Make all of the copies that you like . Stuff most of the copies in your bag and drop the key on the ground . Or bang it against something . This will jumble the counter and the clerk will usually just ask you how many copies you made . Guess on how many you made with the amount of copies that AREN'T in your bag and you are set . NOTE : this is an old trick that many Kinko's know about .... but remember , the customer is always right . They pay the overnight shift people $7 an hour and the majority of them are either too tired or too bored to really care about who is stealing or what-not .
        3)Steal a copy key , saw off the cord with the big Kinko's logo on it and use the same tactic as number 1 . This way there is little to no evidence left behind .
        For the second type of Kinko's stores out there , they have key cards that are the size of credit cards . You put money in a machine and it pops out a key card with the amount of money magnetically on it . The highest dollar amount it can run is $99.99 I THINK ( I'm not altogether sure about that ) . This is a much harder type of card to scam . Many touring bands sell these cards with $100 worth of copies on it for $10 . Now I know of a way to re-magnetize these cards and make an unlimited supply but it's too risky and I don't want anyone to get caught on my account .
        THE EASIEST WAY TO SCAM KINKO'S !!!! - Either you or a friend get a job working there overnight . You can probably guess why .
        Happy Copy-Making !

Louise Darling:
This is a San Fran-centric question, but does anyone in SF know of a copy place that has a copier with colored toner? The CopyCentral in the Castro used to have one but they tell me it's long gone.

Some of the kinko's around here in NY have accent color on their machines. Even though they're a bunch of assholes, you might want to call the different stores in your area and ask if they have it, if you haven't already.

Hey, I work at Kinko's and I resent you grouping me in with a bunch of other Kinko's "assholes". You have to get to know me before you can call me an asshole. And if we're assholes than you're probably some stupid cunt trying to get some shit for free from the corporation. Those are the people who we treat as assholes, you stupid cunt. If you want to rip off Kinko's, do it right and get a job there, you cunt. And stop calling me an asshole, cunt.

Louise Darling:
wowee. well, i've actually gotten some good "deals" from the kinko's staff at several of their bay area locations. all you gotta do is ask nicely. but accent color? what's that?

Accent color, spot can do a whole document or specific area in a color other than black. It's cheaper than full color copies.

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