The Trust Experiment – Vox

My friend’s have the coolest ideas!!!

andrea from has started a fascinating experiment in human behaviour.  She calls it .

She is taking an old wallet inserting a $10 bill and, after coordinating with the manager of her favourite local coffeeshop ( for those of you reading from Ottawa), is leaving it on table with the following note inside:

Hello –

You have just stumbled upon the Trust Experiment.

I have put ten dollars in this wallet. It was deliberately left here on [date]. I will be checking it once a day to see if it’s still here. At the end of the experiment the money will be donated to the .

Obviously, this experiment ends if the wallet or the money disappears. It might last a day or a month. I have no idea, but that’s what I’d like to find out.

If you’re reading this, please sign the bottom of this sheet to let me know when you were here. Although you are not required to do so you may add money to the wallet, but you must first accept the risk that comes with leaving cold hard cash out in the open. The question is: do you trust?

This experiment is being tracked at


andrea t.

Now some of the more cynical of you may think this is silly or that this is a waste of time.

andrea’s response to your cynicism? “I would like to say, for the record, that I don’t really care. I’m doing this for myself and for myself only. And I thought it might be cool to take a few other people (like you!) along for the ride and write about it here.”

There’s been a fair bit of discussion already happening on andrea’s blog about the project, people’s inherent good-ness or bad-ness and by extension trustworthiness, and because of me a little chat about the broke and hungry.

I’m eager to see how it all pans out.

What would you do if you found a wallet left on a coffeeshop table?

Alexa Clark

Alexa is a digital marketer and author with over 20 years in digital & interactive communications in the food and tech industries. Alexa's CheapEats Restaurant Guides, for both Toronto & Ottawa, were Canadian best sellers. She is a recognized authority on social media and has been named one of Canada's 20 Leading Women in Social Media.

4 thoughts on “The Trust Experiment – Vox

  • March 20, 2007 at 12:23 am

    i ran my own brief “Trust Experiment” and left a couple of loonies out in the kitchen. They both went to town in my car…

  • March 20, 2007 at 10:33 am

    sandysandy, sandy… I think that might be more an experiement in how far the apple falls from the tree.

  • March 20, 2007 at 10:46 pm

    nature or nurture?
    epizuexis will always out out out

  • March 21, 2007 at 11:43 am

    funny. Outrageously esoteric, but funny.


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