2005_12_mantle.jpgSeventh! Not even the top five! The Anholt-GMI City Brands Index was released yesterday, and NYC ranks seventh out of thirty cities surveyed. Clearly, something must be amiss. We're trying to get our hands on the actual survey, but let's talk about what we do know. The components of the survey included: Presence (contribution to culture/science), Place (physical aspects), Potential (job/education opportunities), Pulse (urban lifestyle), People (welcome/diversity), and Prerequisites (basic qualities). Well, there you go: NYC did score low on the welcome and the cleanliness, especially since many people are using their preconceived notions of NYC when ranking it. In fact, this is what the press release said about NYC:

New York's overall position was boosted by its first place as "a city that contributes to culture and science," a place for higher education (ranked second) and for the diversity and variety of languages it offers (also ranked second). In addition to having a good reputation for its cultural contributions, New York is America's city of opportunity, coming in second place in the Potential category after London.

On the flip side, the "Big Apple" was also seen as both "dirty" (26th out of 30) and unwelcoming or cold toward visitors (28th). Lagos, Nigeria and Johannesburg, South Africa both ranked better in terms of cleanliness.

NYC & Company (the city's tourism arm) tells the Post, "New Yorkers are the friendliest group of people in the world, and you have to come here to meet them to know it firsthand." Exactly. We will happily tell you the fastest way to get from point A to point B, in fact giving you multiple options depending on the time of day or what the weather is like, but if you're blocking our way on the street, then you're a marked man.

New York City, though, was the top American city: Los Angeles as 8th, San Francisco was 11th, and Washington DC 14th. And London was ranked number one. We suspect Simon Anholt, creator of the ranking, is from the UK, but we're not implying nothing.

Image of Mickey Mantle, proof that number 7 is not always a bad thing