This summer, Wired writer Patrick Di Justo did a piece about the true value of the human body. Here’s the gist of it:
We’ve all heard that the chemicals in a human body, if priced in their cheapest form as raw elements like carbon and nitrogen, are worth something like 97 cents, or $1.98, or some tiny amount.
Well, under the right circumstances, if you could sell your body not as carbon and nitrogen, but as spinal fluid and erethryopoietin and insulin and ImmunoglobinG and follicle stimulating hormone and such, you’d be worth an average of $45 million dollars!
[text snipped from Patrick’s blog]
This story got mad crazy pickup from CNN and Reuters et al. It was a question on Hollywood Squares. The $45 million stat even made it into the August Harper’s Index.
The only downside to all this media buzz is that many of us on staff were inundated with scores of creepy, heartbreaking emails like this one:
Date: Wed, 30 Jul 2003 01:44:28 +0800
Subject: To whom can I sell my milk?
To whom can answer my question at Wired
In your lastest issue there is an article on how much body parts/ organs and bodily emmisions sell for. Can you please give me the information about who will buy my breast milk? I am a nursing new mother looking for extra income.