Ebay Stops Kidney Auction

from the capitalism-goes-awry dept

Apparently someone posted an auction on Ebay for a “fully functional kidney” and the bidding hit $5.7M before Ebay brought it to a halt. Doubtless a joke, but a platform for interesting discussion — I recall a professor discussing the potential for the richest bidders to skew organ transplant lists with their ability to pay. He proposed that potential receipients bid on the number of hours they would pledge to charity in exchange for their new organ. Thoughts?

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Comments on “Ebay Stops Kidney Auction”

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Mike (profile) says:

Different types of auctions

I think Todd brings up some interesting points in his post. The concept of the “charity auction” is different and pretty interesting. I am wondering, though, if the internet (gotta bring it back to the internet – that’s what I do) makes specialty auctions that don’t involve money easier… Or does it simply make it easier to scam an auction like that. It’s easy to say you’re going to give X hours to charity before you get the kidney and then try to get out of it after you’re safe and sound. One thing that folks have noticed in being involved with internet auctions is it’s easy to get carried away and bid well beyond what you meant to, or could reasonably afford.

shineshinda (profile) says:

Kidney for Sale

41 year old male, perfect health, A+ blood type, never have smoked, drank alcohol or done drugs (haven’t even drank coffee ever). Completely disease free.

You must pickup all associated fees (travel and the whatnot), make a down payment of $100,000 prior to the operation and the remainder (highest bidder) is immediately due upon completion of the operation.

Bidding begins now.

Anni Nominous says:

That was my idea!

The law in every country today forbids selling organs, whether from living or dead people. (There are a few isolated exceptions, including blood and blood plasma.) The bizarre principle seems to be that everybody is allowed to benefit from the donation except the person who makes the sacrifice. The patient benefits, the doctor benefits, the hospital benefits. But if the donor benefits, that is somehow considered unethical.

In my opinion this is both bad ethics and bad policy. Ethically, someone who donates an organ, or agrees to make one available after his death, certainly deserves recompense. From a policy point of view, there is generally a shortage of organ donors, and providing recompense would increase the supply and save innumerable lives.

I don’t agree with the ban, I feel it only creates underground channels. People will do what is most important to them…if proper channels aren’t available they will be made in some form or another. You can’t stop necessity. There are also monetary forms of compensation that don’t break any laws, you just have to be smarter than Uncle Sam. I’m a healthy, athletic 35 yr old white male willing to give for compensation. I exercise, don’t drink or smoke and have no family history of any illness or disease. I’m type O-. I live in Denver. 05/03/2010 scojennn@gmail. com

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