People Are Sharing Times Someone Made A Rule So Stupid It Backfired (15 Stories)

Some rules are made to be broken.

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Or, as this Reddit post suggests, some rules are so stupid that they will surely backfire.

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Whether it’s mandating that you must wear an ID tag or you will be sent home from school (no, no, don’t send me home) or “just say yes” policies that result in food code violations, it boggles the mind to think that once upon a time, someone thought these were good ideas.

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“I was working as a medical assistant at a private practice medical clinic. Our clinic manager wouldn’t allow the new receptionist to drive to the bank to deposit cash. Made her walk carrying the money bag so that she couldn’t ‘drive away with the money.’ Bizarre. I know. That went on for a few weeks. Then the receptionist was mugged and over $1000 in cash was stolen. She was allowed to drive after that.” — IndyMazzy

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“My boss started putting ‘all staff required to start 15 mins earlier than indicated’ on the roster. I started keeping track of my unpaid overtime and stung her for 3 paid days off. That’s not required anymore.” — muthaclucker


“Back in the early 00s, my high school implemented a policy that you had to wear your ID tag at all times. If you didn’t have it on, you were sent home. So many students ‘lost’ their ID tag to go grab food or skip a class. We were the only graduating class to wear them all four years. The policy ended soon after.” — sushinova

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“Not mine, but an old roommate of mine was a senior developer for a small company. It was an open secret that one of the other senior devs, a guy who had been there since the beginning, would sometimes spend time looking at plastic surgery photos–before/after shots, photos of active procedures, etc. He did it enough that people would poke fun at him about it, but he didn’t seem embarrassed about it, and it wasn’t harming anyone. Well, one day a project manager said something to the CEO about this guy’s ongoing plastic surgery obsession, and the CEO flipped. He said that, going forward, no one was allowed to use their work computers to access external websites AT ALL. Anyone who’s ever been a developer knows that half the job is googling stuff, so this policy pretty much halted productivity in its tracks. It only lasted a day before the CEO retracted the rule, but let everyone know that their browser history would be monitored going forward. After that, no one really changed their behavior, they just started remotely accessing their home computers to browse instead.” — Salsa__Stark

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“I worked at Starbucks for like 5+ years before and during undergrad and at one point our district manager thought it was a good idea to implement a ‘just say yes’ policy, where we literally weren’t allowed to tell the customer no. Lasted for about 3 months and in that three months our unaccounted product and waste went up over 300% because when the POS didn’t have a way to punch in a customer request we had to just do it anyways. We also got complaints from stores in surrounding districts because they had angry customers who were requesting things that were against local food service code, and told them that we did it for them at our store. I knew exactly how that policy was going to play out and I just laughed every time management was freaking out about the problems it was causing.” — yunglilbigslimhomie


“Not a stupid rule, but I think this should apply. I’m in aviation maintenance and wanted to leave the current company that I worked for 12 years with. During my interview at the new company, I was asked why I was thinking of leaving my current job, being that it was a good and reputable company. I said new management is all about efficiency and NOT the 1 thing aviation maintenance is all about, SAFETY. Interviewer liked my interview and assured their company doesn’t cut any corners in safety vs cost. I get the job. Fast forward 6 months or so, I’m the new guy, so I get the short end and have to work Xmas Eve. Should be a short day, bosses plane is coming in from Cabo to drop off chartered passengers, fill up on fuel and take him and family to their vacation home in Aspen. Plane arrives and as I’m doing my ‘post flight’ walk around, I see a big problem that forces me to ground the plane. Boss is clearly not happy, attempts to force me to make an unapproved repair, I deny to do so and I’m sent home. Sweet!! I didn’t quit, it’s documented and I get to go home earlier than planned on a holiday. Someone else gets called in to do the ‘Mickey Mouse’ of a repair, everyone’s happy, plane taxis out with owner and family, full on fuel and tries to take off. Ooops. Crappy repair failed, huge component breaks off and goes into the inlet of the jet engine, grenades that engine, planes brakes overheat trying to stop the heavy ass plane with just 1 engine, some fuselage is damaged from the engine that gave out and the plane finally comes to a stop. FAA comes in. SWEET!! Who made this repair? Who accepted to take this flight? What company operates this way!? So, dummy tech that tried to make the repair gets his license revoked, the boss owns the charter company so he’s fined a HUGE amount and is put on a ‘probation’ with continuous FAA audits AND, best of all, the insurance rejected his claim to the engine because it was negligence. This cost him millions!!! And they couldn’t fire me. I got to tell the story over and over and over with a big smile on my face.” — Numb_Nut34

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“My spouse’s workplace realized they didn’t have a policy about sending sexual images or jokes as part of their email acceptable use policy, so they added it. Except they made it a firing offense to send or receive sexual content (I think the intent was to stop people from subscribing to such content). They also said that your access would be immediately revoked until a determination was made. So someone got fired for something else and decided to send their whole management chain a graphically sexual image, then report it using the anonymous tip line. IT got the report, concluded they did indeed receive sexual content, and did as required—suspended all the involved email accounts, including the SVP’s. The policy has since been reworded.” — loljetfuel

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“I worked on this company that had mandatory 1 hour lunch breaks. Since we ate on the premises, our lunch break was often 15 minutes or so. We tried negotiating having shorter lunch breaks so we could leave earlier and beat traffic. Next day an e-mail was sent from the own stating the fixed work and break hours for the whole team, and they were to be followed no exceptions. Cool! Next week, a big client called about half way through our lunch, and nobody moved. It rang and rang until said owner took the call, talked to them, and immediately came to scold us. ‘Sorry, boss, as per your rules, we are off until 1PM, no exceptions.’ A couple of weeks later, we did some work on site for the same client. They were, to be honest, one of the coolest clients I ever had in my life. They took us out to lunch, and while talking we ended up relaying the owner’s rule. They had a big chuckle over it, and while the project lasted, they made a point to always call while we were at lunch break just to annoy owner.” — LGMHorus


“The bottom floor of my secondary school was a square that had corridor all the way around. After some incident where a kid got knocked over, they implemented a one-way system. Unfortunately, they were Very Strict on enforcing it. If you accidentally walked past your class, you couldn’t just turn around. They seemed very proud of their new rule…until everyone started showing up late for class because they had to do extra laps of the bottom floor.” — FrosnPls3

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“A long while back, but my school banned the color pink because a bunch of students were wearing it one October and they thought it was a ‘gang’ thing. It was for breast cancer awareness month. The rule didn’t go well for them.” — WaywardWriter

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