The Perils of Free Sperm Donation

Some are altruistic, some just want sex—but all could cause problems later
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 19, 2009 12:47 PM CDT
Hey, baby, free sperm donors may not be all they're cracked up to be.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Free sperm donors abound on the Internet, and they’re trying to help those who can’t have a baby the traditional way—or can’t afford the traditional sperm donation. They range from Trent, a 6’1” blond who says “a spirit of volunteering to the community” motivates him, to Ted, a 51-year-old protesting the commercialization of sperm donation. But Ted, and others like him, could also be “putting the public at risk,” one doctor tells DoubleX.

In addition to only accepting donors between ages 21 and 38—Ted would be rejected because his “sperm is more at risk,” the doctor says—commercial sperm banks also do extensive physical and psychological testing. Not only is that testing decidedly absent with free donors advertising on Craigslist—there are also the parental rights issues to deal with, and of course the fact that some, as one group leader says, are “clearly just looking for sex.” (Read more sperm stories.)