An Experiment in the Honesty of Humans

I like to think that humans are inherently good. We fuck up a lot and there a lot of fuckups in our midst, but at heart we are good species.

I found this video today. It’s a few years old but I like so I’m showing it to you anyway.

In the midst of the recession in America, an ice tea company known as Honest Tea launched a social experiment slash brand activation in major cities across the US of A. The concept was simple, as many of the best are.

An unmanned stand selling bottles of Honest Tea. Customers popped their dollar bills in a perspex box and took their drink. Hidden cameras monitored the process to measure how many customers actually paid for the drinks they took. Customers who didn’t pay weren’t chased down but the stolen drinks reflected as a percentage loss of on the bar of American honesty.

This probably wouldn’t hold up as anthropological experiment but it’s interesting nonetheless. I wonder if something like this would work in South Africa?

The cynic in me would be very curious to see if the perspex box was still there at the end of the day.

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