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Facebook trying to raise awareness about organ donation

Are you an organ donor? If so you can now share this with your friends and family on Facebook.

Yesterday (May 1) in an exclusive interview the social network's chief executive Mark Zuckerberg spoke to ABC News about a new organ donating tool for timeline.

Every Facebook user should now be able to find an option on their timeline that allows them to share whether they are going to donate their organs in the event of their death.

Mr Zuckerberg hopes to raise awareness about organ donation with this new social media strategy.

"What we hope will happen is that by just having this simple tool, we think that people can really help spread awareness of organ donation and that they want to participate in this to their friends," he explained to Robin Roberts of ABC News.

When people update this tool they can also opt to share a personal story or video detailing why they decided to donate – an action that may inspire others to do the same.

"That can be a big part of helping solve the crisis that's out there," Mr Zuckerberg added.

Approximately 114,000 people are currently waiting for organ transplants in the United States alone, explained Mr Zuckerberg and Facebook's chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg in a blog post.

They also said that as many as 18 people die every day because they cannot get a transplant.

"Medical experts believe that broader awareness about organ donation could go a long way toward solving this crisis," they wrote.

"And we believe that by simply telling people that you're an organ donor, the power of sharing and connection can play an important role."

So far this new announcement seems to be getting mixed reviews, with many taking to Twitter to share their thoughts.

A New York Times article about the tool has also received over 200 comments to date.

While some are happy to get on board and share their stories, others are sceptical about passing over details about their blood type to Facebook.

What do you think – is this a revolutionary life-saving tool or simply a new social media marketing tactic?

Posted by Jess O'Connor

Castleford