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

Octagon Global Recruiting is a volunteer recruiting organization apparently run by the Dharma Initiative, as part of the alternate reality game, Dharma Initiative Recruiting Project. A television advertisement for the Octagon Global Recruiting website, octagonglobalrecruiting.com, was

Sign-up page

aired at the end of the last commercial break during "There's No Place Like Home, Part 2" on May 29, 2008.

The television advertisement and site stated that Octagon Global Recruiting would hold a recruiting session in San Diego from July 24-27, 2008, and fan speculation relating to Comic-Con being at the same time and location was later confirmed in a series of emails, with the group supposedly running aptitude tests as part of their recruitment drive.

Press release

Industry: Charity

On behalf of the Dharma Initiative, Octagon Global Recruiting is currently seeking volunteers to contribute to an important new research project.

San Diego, CA (PRunderground) May 29, 2008 – The Dharma Initiative is a multidisciplinary research collective dedicated to improving the human condition through innovative scientific research. Our directors are recognized leaders in their fields, with distinguished research histories in a wide range of social and scientific disciplines.

A new research project is about to commence which will play a vital role in the furthering Dharma Initiative’s objectives.

Octagon Global Recruiting, on behalf of the Dharma Initiative, requires research volunteers to assist in a range of unpaid positions.

Our national recruitment drive will commence in San Diego, California, July 24 – 27, 2008.

To apply for an unpaid position, or to simply learn more, please visit: http://www.octagonglobalrecruiting.com [1]

Ad video

Volunteer positions

The advertisement asks for unpaid volunteers for a number of positions, listing the following (presented in order vertically):

Meteorologists Health Care Workers IVF Consultants Recycling Coordinators
Psychologists Communication Specialists Teachers Aeronautical Engineers
Parapsychologists Neuroscientists Architects Horticulturists
Zoologists Janitors Ichthyologists Dentists
Physicists Engineers Transport Mechanics Octagon ring.jpg
Mathematicians Biologists Immunologists
Botanical Researchers Astrophysicists Nurses
Engineers Ex-Military Illustrators
Builders Electricians Auditors
Drivers Vets Minibus Drivers


Main article: Dharma correspondence

A series of email newsletters were sent out by Hans Van Eeghen, Head of Recruiting for the Dharma Initiative. He advertised the recruitment drive at Comic-Con. The site source code also included an ominous message from a hacker known as RuckusGuy:

…If you’re reading this, wanna hear something cool?
I’ve got intel about his little “recruitment drive.”
They’re doing some kind’ve personality/IQ testing or something down in SD for ComicCon.
Buddy of mine works down there and has the approvals for their “booth,” he says once you go in no one knows what happens inside and you need an appointment to get in. He also said to make sure you’ve got your Bluetooth on and visible – he’s rigged up a little something.

The whole thing sounds like elitist B.S., doesn’t it?
Well, I’m getting in that booth and taking the test.
As many times as I have to before I “pass” (whatever that means?)
And then…
If I can?
I’m gonna tape it so EVERYONE can see what these idiots are up to.
Should be fun, right?
See ya in SD. RuckusGuy OUT.


Image of the booth and a DHARMA rep played by Emma Benison (taken from Ryan Ozawa's Flickr page).

At the Octagon Global Recruiting booth, fans were given a waiver form and an appointment time by DHARMA staff (all with Australian accents). At their appropriate time, they entered the booth, which had cameras on the ceiling (these fed outside the booth so observers could see what was going on). With a set of headphones and television equipment, participants were shown images and given a series of questions, and had to say what first pops into their heads. Some of the images in particular were reportedly very bizarre. Questions were then asked such as "You just took away a child's favorite toy. Why?" Reportedly, fans had the option of what type of test they can take by choosing a different name. There were eight options, all names of Jupiter moons. One question example was, "Who is your constant?" which is an allusion to the episode "The Constant". [2]

The test apparently lasted about five minutes, and upon completion candidates were told whether they passed or not (it's likely everyone "passed" as part of the ARG). Participants were then told to make sure they see the Lost panel on Saturday, and have their test sheet with them (they apparently made a point of having your own sheet with you). They were also given an ID card, which includes special details which can, from July 28th, be entered on DharmaWantsYou.com to allow those who took the test to register for "Phase 2" of the application process.

The legal declaration form participants must sign finally revealed the name of the ARG project, Dharma Initiative Recruiting Project or simply known as "The Project".

At the Lost panel, Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse announced that DHARMA was sponsoring Lost. Hans Van Eeghen announced the results of the tests: nearly everyone had failed dismally except for a select few. These select few were going back to the DHARMA booth to be shown something "special". A little while later, a young guy called Dan Bronson with a video camera interrupted Damon and Carlton's presentation because he had gotten the secret video on tape and he thought that the fans deserved some answers. Despite security trying to take him away and Damon and Carlton's objections, Dan Bronson showed the video to Comic-Con.

The Bluetooth Video

The video hack RuckusGuy promised was released at Comic-Con, but visitors had some difficulty retrieving the file. To rectify this, a high quality version was later uploaded onto YouTube by "User:RuckusGuy".

EmbedVideo received the bad id "cW6xkv9vwos&" for the service "youtube".

The DHARMA video

For a transcript of the video, see DHARMA booth video.


Main article: DharmaWantsYou.com

After the events of Comic-Con, the DharmaWantsYou.com site officially launched, giving all fans a chance to join the Dharma Initiative. The site issued an eligibility test, followed by a string of aptitude tests spread out over a period of weeks.


  • When read from the bottom upwards the first letters of the positions spell DHARMA INITIATIVE.
  • The logos of the DHARMA Initiative are octagons.
    • There are 16 positions needed to create this upside-down acronym.
  • "Engineers" is listed twice, residing in the 8th and 15th position from the top of the list. If you count to the end and then continue down again from the top (counting the first spot twice), Engineers also rests in the 42nd place. the word Engineers is also included as part of the 32nd consecutive slot, under "Aeronautical Engineers".
  • The first four jobs (meteorologists, psychologists, parapsychologists, and zoologists) are also the first four areas of research of the DHARMA Initiative mentioned by Marvin Candle in the Swan Orientation film.
  • Near the end of the video, when the octagon ring is making its final spin, its sides bear the same Bagua trigrams as seen on the DHARMA Initiative logos.
  • At the end of the video, a person can be seen typing the numbers 8 15 16 on the keyboard.
  • Similar to the Hanso Foundation website, a Plesk error message is displayed when connection is attempted using SSL.
  • The terms and conditions on the Octagon web site reveal that it is owned by the Walt Disney Internet Group.
  • The "IVF" in "IVF Consultant" stands for In Vitro Fertilization, so an IVF Consultant would be a position similar to the one that Juliet Burke held during her time with the Others.
  • An editor of Lost is Henk Van Eeghen.
  • The IP address in the HTML source code of the site (avalible all the way to the left of the page) is and is registered to Domains by Proxy, Inc.
  • Octagon emails use the word Dharma, as opposed to the correct DHARMA, as it is an acronym.

External links

LOST panel at Comic-Con 08