California Beaming: State Credits Facebook With 1,400 Percent Spike In Organ Donors

By Julie D. Andrews 

It was early Tuesday when Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg announced on “Good Morning America” that Facebook users could now indicate whether or not they were organ donors in their social-network bios. By half past noon PT the same day, Donate Life California had experienced an 800 percent uptick in online donor registrations, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Hours later, a Facebook status update on the organ donor registry’s page reported that as of 5 p.m. PT, registrations at had spiked by nearly 1,400 percent.

“Thank you, FACEBOOK, for offering hope to people on the waiting list! Phenomenal!,” read the post.

Close to 21,000 Californians are currently enduring the nail-biting wait for an organ — among them, more than 350 children, according to the LA Times.

We can’t help thinking back to all of those jokes referencing how pointless social networking seemed: “Who cares what you had for breakfast?”

Well, a great many people facing life or death one day may get a shot at living thanks to the recruitment efforts being carried out on the social network. That may be something about which to care. Cyber hangout Facebook managed to bring the donation of corneas, heart valves, and veins, among other unmentionables, to the fore of the public discourse.

There goes that Facebook effect, at it again. Well done, we say. The implications — and possibilities for social change — are huge.

What other causes do you think could benefit hugely from such Facebook initiatives?