Imagine my surprise when our famed sci-fi writer, the one and only Iain M Banks, turned his attention to the credit management industry in his newest book, Surface Detail. He delves into how genetic advances might, in the future, allow debtors to be marked with a little more than an adverse entry with Experian.
Banks writes about Sichultian law which decrees that if a commercial debt cannot be settled by conventional means, the debtor is empowered and obliged to offer alternative means of compensation. Incredibly, this includes intagliating a generation or two of the debtor's offspring and signing the same over to the care of the creditor. Intagliation, in Banks' future vision, entails the manipulation of a debtor's genetic code so that their offspring are born with intricate, indelible and highly visible skin designs. It's a means of adding generational shame to the debtor's legacy.
Before I rush to draft a new set of clauses for our clients' business terms and conditions, I am reminded that the Sichultanians are an alien race, Banks' book is a work of fiction and such clauses would inevitably fall foul of UK consumer law, not to mention the Unfair Contract Terms Act 1997.
So what do you think? Tell me about your own alternative means for handling debtors; the more imaginative, the better!