Status Update: Facebook Promotes Organ Donation

May 7, 2012 2:35 PM ET

For years, the Department of Motor Vehicles has inquired whether we'd like to be an organ donor, but Facebook has posed a more direct question: Are you?

The world's leading social network announced Tuesday it will now allow users to include organ donor status among other biographical information on member profiles, marking perhaps the first time an individual's donor status has been shared in such a public way. Yet, the outcome is much more than a timeline milestone. The New York Times reports nearly 7,000 people die each year waiting for an organ transplant; Facebook reaches 161 million users in the U.S. alone. The potential impact is clear.

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