Dallas is the Most Honest City in America. (The Honest Tea Experiment Proves It.)

We mentioned the Honest Tea experiment/publicity stunt that was running in cities across America yesterday. According to the “official” results, Chicago is the most honest city in America, since 99 percent of people there who took tea paid for it even though they may have thought that no one was monitoring. Dallas did OK, but only showed a 96 percent honesty rate.

But those raw numbers don’t tell the whole story. As Freakonomics notes, there were substantial differences in the weather of the cities involved. So I did a little number crunching and devised a new stat: TAH (temperature-adjusted honesty.) It’s a simple formula. ((Temperature in degrees Fahrenheit/100) * (Honest Tea raw honesty percentage * 100)).

And I so present the true ranking of the honesty of America’s cities:

City Temperature (F) Raw Honesty TAH
Dallas 101 96% 97%
Cincinnati 100 96% 96%
Atlanta 96 96% 91%
Philadelphia 92 96% 88%
Washington, DC 94 91% 86%
Miami 92 92% 85%
Chicago 85 99% 84%
Boston 86 97% 83%
New York 95 86% 82%
Los Angeles 92 80% 87%
San Francisco 74 93% 69%
Seattle 67 97% 65%


  • Ryan

    You could have made your simple formula a little more simple since you divided by 100 and then multiplied by 100. If you just take T * RH, you get the same result without the extra step…but then, the formula might not look as impressive.

  • @Ryan: I think you answered your own question.

  • I think it is a fair comparison. Seattle was 1% more honest… and three degrees below room temperature. Dallas was 1% less honest with brutal 101 degree weather.

  • @Phelps: Don’t see the relevance of the fact that Seattle may have been cooler yesterday than some people like.

    We’re talking here about the urge to drink a cold bottle of tea. Surely there’s a correlation between a rise in heat and that desire.

    Being below room temperature (and rainy apparently) should have been no handicap to Seattle’s honesty.

    Clearly, as the numbers demonstrate, a third of that city’s population are thieves.

  • Buckeye

    I always suspected that people from Seattle were liars. Now we have proof.

  • Augustus Mulliner

    Yeah, but when you adjust for $30,000 millionaires, it blows your formula right to hell.

  • Spartan

    Manipulating numbers so that Dallas is #1 and then calling it Freakonomics is – for lack of a better term – retarded.

    Are you presuming that temperature affects honesty?

    Unless this is a joke, like the South Park penis equation, in which case, haha.