Coffee Just Wants To Be Free

Ervin Peretz, a 37-year-old Google programmer, just might be a genius.
He opened Terra Bite Lounge, a coffee shop in Kirkland, WA that has no prices for any of the food or drinks it “sells.” Instead people volunteer money if and when they choose. Those who do pay simply put whatever they want into a drop box.
According to Seattle Times:

The idea emerged during a booze-fueled debate in a Saigon bar, where Peretz and a colleague had traveled to blow off steam after a period of long hours at work.
Peretz argued that people are essentially good, but can be influenced by their environment. If people see good, they’ll be good.
Peretz isn’t worried that people will abuse Terra Bite. There’s enough money to fund the honor system, and enough honor, too, he said.

I love the idea that business can be a vehicle for social change. So many people start a business to make money. Then that’s what it is–a business set up to make money. But a business set up to solve a problem or to encourage enlightened behavior…that’s powerful stuff.
[via Blog on a Toothpick]

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am now head of brand strategy and creative direction at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.