Tea maker tests Little Rock's honesty

    6:42 PM, Jul 16, 2013   |    comments
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    Honest Tea founder and CEO Seth Goldman(Photo: Honest Tea, CNN)

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - How honest are people in central Arkansas? The company "Honest Tea" put Little Rock to the test by setting out a few bottles of iced tea on a hot Tuesday in July.

    Honest Tea set up a kiosk in the River Market District in downtown Little Rock. The company wanted to know if we were honest enough to drop a dollar in a buck box next to the tea before taking one of the drinks.

    Connor Davis of Honest Tea said the tea company is traveling cross-country, looking for the most honest city.

    "We're actually seeing how honest people are today. So, they come up, and they can drop a dollar in, or they can just go and snag a bottle," he explained. "We just want to see if people believe--the people that like our product--have the same ideals as we do."

    As our hidden camera captured all patrons stopping for a tea, several paid for one including Holly Greenfield, of Little Rock, who said she likes the concept. Greenfield had stopped to grab a tea while leaving the farmer's market. Unknowingly to her, Honest Tea representatives were nearby recording data for their national honesty index, and she said she was pleasantly surprised.

    "I think that's cool. I hope they find out people are more honest than not," she explained."It's easy. It trusts people. It builds community."

    Greenfield added that she's a believer in the honor system.

    "I think if you trust people, they rise to that trust," she concluded.

    Little Rock resident Ann Johnson said she grabbed a tea on her way to lunch Tuesday.

    "To be honest, I was heading down to the River Market, and it's a little hot out here, and I thought, 'This would be great. I'm a little thirsty,'" she described.

    After depositing a dollar into the box, we let her know about the experiment.

    In this case, there's no penalty for being dishonest other than karma said Johnson.

    "It always pays to be honest wherever you are. No matter what it is," she added.

    The results from the social experiment will be posted to the national honesty index on July 23. At that time, we'll see where Little Rock ranks on the honesty scale.

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