Small steps toward a much better world

The NotFound project searches for missing children in the EU using website error pages

Maybe these days you spend more time looking at 404 pages than milk cartons.  The story is here, hat tip to Michael Rosenwald.


Marking this down as a small step toward a much better world.

But as an empirical matter, how effective (on average or at the margin) are these pictures in finding lost children?

The EU has a bureaucrat and organization for every imaginable thing: e.g. Missing Children Europe is governed by its Members, who meet at least once a year for a General Assembly. A Board of Directors entrusted with all powers to meet the goals of the Federation is composed of elected Members and Independent Administrators, and meets twice a year. The General Assembly and Board meetings are chaired by the President, who is elected by the Members for a renewable mandate of 3 years.

I would be amazed if even 1 lost person were found because of this.

IIRC, the milk carton campaign in the 80s lost steam after the public became aware that most of the young faces they saw were children of custody disputes, rather than a wave of child kidnappings by strangers. Adam Walsh was the horrifying exception, not the rule.

Perhaps the 404 campaign will work better if it focuses on teenage runaways.

The page could be customized based on your location, either proximity to where the child was kidnapped, or wherever they suspect the missing child might be.

I am totally agree with your thoughts. Keep doing these type of work.

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