TAG Challenge: A Social Media Worldwide Hunt

Tag is one of the world's most-loved games, played in many a playground over a number of centuries - so it makes sense to bring this pastime to the world's playground, and invite players to take part in an international scale. Do you feel up to the challenge of locating five fugitives hidden in five of the world's cities? Winners will be rewarded the princely sum of $5,000, of course.

Named the TAG Challenge, mug shots of five 'fugitives' will be distributed on March 31 - with the worldwide hunt for "jewel thieves" taking place in Bratislava, Stockholm, London, Washington DC and New York; with each spending 12 hours in public locations. The first group to upload images of each of the fugitives by noon eastern time on April 1 will reign supreme - along with the $5,000 reward.

Based on the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Red Balloon Challenge in 2009 - where DARPA hid 10 balloons across the US and offered $40,000 for the first team to find all the balloons in one day - the TAG initiative is hoping to see whether it's possible to replicate this project, but with a focus on social media as a means of tracking fugitive or missing persons.

"I don't want to speculate too much about how teams might mobilize or organize or develop their search strategies," explained lead organiser Joshua deLara. "But I imagine that some of the same strategies might apply."

Should a winning strategy evolve from this scheme, it could result in a revolutionary new mapping method that could see law enforcement agencies benefit greatly from the use of social networking.

"If you did ever want to implement this kind of scheme for finding a missing person," deLara said, "you would want to know something about structuring incentives. So there might be lessons to come out of that."

Image credit: Laughing Squid

Source: CNET