This information was revealed in part through the third alternate reality game
Dharma Initiative Recruiting Project
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Clues · Comic-Con · CorrespondenceDharma booth video · Tests
Characters:   Dan Bronson · Daniel Faraday · Hans Van Eeghen · Lara · RuckusGuy
Websites: Octagon Global Recruiting · Dharma Wants You · Dharma Special Access

The logo seen at Comic Con.

The website homepage upon passing the test.

DharmaWantsYou.com (dead link) is a website launched as part of the new Lost alternate reality game running during the hiatus between Seasons 4 and 5. A newsletter email from Octagon Global Recruiting identified the site as a place where volunteers may be assessed for their eligibility to join their project. It has been stated that this will be available for a limited time only, testing has ended on October 7th, 2008.

From the "What Is This" section of DharmaWantsYou.com:

Dharma Wants You is an online experience connected to the ABC TV show LOST.

The story follows a fictitious scientific community from LOST, The Dharma Initiative, as it attempts to recruit and assess volunteers for a secret research project.

By completing an 'Eligibility Test' and registering on dharmawantsyou.com audience members enroll as volunteer recruits for the Dharma Initiative.

Each week audience members will have the opportunity to complete a test that assesses their abilities in a particular skill.



At Comic-Con, after taking the aptitude test as part of the Octagon Global Recruiting drive, participants were given an ID card with a code on the back. This could be entered on the Dharmawantsyou.com website to enter "phase 2" of the application process. Flyers given out at Comic Con also reiterated that if you cannot get an appointment in person, applications could be made online from July 28th.

A video featuring Pierre Chang was also shown at Comic-Con, and it appears to explain why the Dharma Initiative has been reconstituted, and why the website is searching for new recruits.


The site opened fully late during the night on July 28th for Eastern, Mountain and Pacific time zones within the United States. However, it opened on July 29th for other time zones around the world, allowing fans everywhere to take the online test.

Upon entry to the site, a short intro is played rhetorically questioning your desire to establish a better tomorrow. Afterwards, the main page presents three options: to register as a new user, to log in as a previously registered used, or to register as a user having been present at Comic Con. There is also a small menu in the top left of the page, displaying three additional links: Home, About Us, and Login. Along the bottom of the page is information regarding ABC and other legal terms.

Tests were later added to the site, appearing each week, along with a "my progress" section and a leaderboard.


Main article: Dharma correspondence

To promote the Dharma recruitment drive and project, a series of email newsletters have been released from Head of Recruiting, Hans Van Eeghen. Some have contained hidden messages in the source code.

Promotional video

The following video was found in the source code of one of the newsletter emails sent out by Hans Van Eeghen. It shows a hacked version of the video from the Comic-Con recruitment drive including some of the questions that were included from the event.


Video Announcment

The following video appeared on DharmaWantsYou.com on September 2nd or September 3rd depending on location. In it, Hans Van Eeghen congratulates and praises recruits for their excellent progress, but also warns them to keep away from an insider named "Black Swan", who appears to be the protagonist and nemesis of the Initiative in the narrative.

Other videos featuring Hans Van Eeghen have also been subsequently released discussing the project and testing program.


The website has issued a series of tests, and from this assigned candidates into specific groups. More details about each test can be viewed in individual article spaces. Beginning with an eligibility test, a series of other tests are being released weekly (each seemingly with a "cheat" function built into the evaluation). Prior to the release of the assessment tests, an eligibility test was given to recruits. Recruits were also able from September 10th to create their own tests with Recruit Created Assessments for others to play, earning themselves Dharma points in the process.

  • Test 1: Pressurized Spatial Judgment Evaluation
  • Test 2: Broad Spectrum Knowledge Analysis
  • Test 3: Dexterity and Attentiveness Evaluation
  • Test 4: Tangential Judgment Analysis
  • Test 5: Numeric Projection Evaluation
  • Test 6: Specialized Departmental Evaluation
  • Test 7: Honesty and Integrity Test

Example leaderboard (August 25th)

"Leaderboard" and "My Progress"

The leaderboard on DharmaWantsYou.com tracks the top ten players from around the world that have the most "Dharma Points". These are obtained through recruiting friends to join the site, or by participating in as-of-yet unknown "special tests" issued by Hans Van Eeghen.

Furthermore, the "My Progress" section of the site lists which available tests candidates have completed, their current number of "Dharma Points", and which group they are currently assigned to.

Candidate groups

Tree data structure made from the DharmaWantsYou.com candidate groups. NOTE: This drawing does not actually appear in the ARG.

The candidate group names are all characters from Greek mythology. After completeing each test, recruits were assigned to a new group.

The candidates groups form a tree data structure. An example path through the structure is shown in the illustration in red. There are 8640 (2x3x4x5x6x6x2) unique possibilities through the system, assuming that all nodes from one level connect to all nodes of the next level.

Groups per test

The table below gives the details of the candidate groups by test:

Test # Group theme Group names Total groups
Test 1 Moons Ganymede, Pandora 2 groups
Test 2 Cyclopes Brontes, Polyphemus, Steropes 3 groups
Test 3 Giants Antaeus, Enceladus, Otus, Tityos 4 groups
Test 4 Titans Atlas, Crius, Cronus, Helios, Oceanus 5 groups
Test 5 Protogenoi Aether, Chaos, Chronus, Hemera, Nyx, Oranos 6 groups
Test 6 Olympians Apollo, Ares, Athena, Demeter, Hestia, Poseidon 6 groups
Test 7 Cygni Black Swan, White Swan 2 groups

A DHARMA psychological experiment, as shown in the Swan Orientation Film

Test 6 groups

For Test 6, the candidate group placement was apparently chosen before the test. Based on candidate reports, the types of questions asked indicated what group they were assigned to. The table below shows the types of question asked and the associated group the candidate was assigned to:

Question type Group assigned
Psychology and Philosophy Apollo
Architecture and History Ares
Mathematics and Physics Athena
Communication and Electronics Demeter
Medical and Education Hestia
Biology and Horticulture Poseidon

The question types appear to coincide with the Dharma volunteer jobs previously advertised, the types of questions in the second Dharma recruitment test, and the research associated with the various DHARMA Initiative stations on The Island.

The Black Swan

A DHARMA electromagnetic experiment, as shown in the Swan Orientation Film

Test 7 groups

As a result of Test 7, candidates were only assigned to two groups depending on if they "cheated" during the course of the recruiterment project. Cheating was done by as using the exploits covertly provided by Black Swan. If a candidate ever used a cheat on any test during the project, they were assigned to the Black Swan group; recruits who never used a cheat were assigned to the White Swan group.



By July 28th, all the dots in the updated DHARMA logo were present. This image has the dots joined.

  • In the weeks leading up to the site's launch, its homepage displayed only the phrase, "DHARMA WANTS YOU: Coming Soon", with small dots incrementally appearing on a daily basis to form an octagon identical to that which was advertised at Comic-Con as the Initiative's new logo. This new logo uses a different method to display the same eight trigrams seen in the original one; instead of 3 sets of lines, solid shapes are used. However, the trigrams are not arranged in the same order as in the standard logo: the new one is rotated one quarter-turn clockwise.
  • On August 8th, a glitch was found on the DharmaWantsYou.com website. After the Intro Screen, if the page is left up and parts of the octagon will begin to shift in and out of the octagon. If you login to your account the center of the octagon will read "volunteer assessment commencing soon" and a similar glitch will occur, causing random letters to flash in the center of the octagon. There are many different letter configurations that appear and shift throughout the course of the "glitch". One of the configurations remains on the screen longer then the rest in different combinations, such as aeeiiio dhmnnst, which will spell "I am on the inside". The letters appear on screen in different sequences but always for a longer period of time then the other letter configurations.
  • In the registration form, the default date of birth is 17th July, 1978. That is approximately (perhaps exactly) the time the Dharma booth video is supposed to have been made. The default gender is also female, which may reference the woman named "Lara" in the DHARMA video.
  • For some reason the country Denmark is missing from the country list on the registration form.
  • The trigrams of the new Dharma Intiative logo seen on the main page have faint straight lines drawn through them, often from corner to corner, and of varying thickness. When the website moves them around three-dimensionally, the lines remain and resemble crystalline fractures.
  • The font used in the page is Futura Book, the same font was used in the word "LOST" at the main title of the show with capital letters.

See Also

Unanswered questions

Unanswered questions
  1. Do not answer the questions here.
  2. Keep the questions open-ended and neutral: do not suggest an answer.
For fan theories about these unanswered questions, see: DharmaWantsYou.com/Theories
  • What is the significance of the background audio phrase having been rendered in Icelandic?
  • Are all group-paths possible?
  • User Birthday default is set to 17 July 1979. What is the significance of this date?

External links