One woman who donated a kidney altruistically has put together a website encouraging others to to do the same.
Matthew Holt, co-founder of Health2.0, which runs a conference centered on "user-generated health care," said he heard someone had recently found a kidney donor through Facebook.
"I think it's part of a larger trend of people looking for a wider community of friends of friends of friends that can help them with their health issues," Holt told ABCNews.com.
Though using social networking sites or other digital means to find a donor may seem enticing to patients and family members, Spry said it brings up touchy ethical issues of who deserves an organ more.
"They're trying to step to the front of the line," Spry said.
Purchasing organs is against the law in the United States for that reason, Spry said.
Dr. David Cronin, associate professor of surgery and director of liver transplantation at Wisconsin Medical Colleged, disagreed.
"There's not necessarily a fairness yardstick that we can apply to this," Dr. Cronin told ABCNews.com.
"It's all not fair. All these people need an organ to be transplanted and they're being resourceful within the rules that govern transplant," he said.
In fact, Dr. Cronin suggested that finding donors through alternate means like the Nakatas are trying to do is actually doing good for others waiting on the list.
"It's a win-win," Dr. Cronin said. "He comes off the list and the one behind him moves up the list."
The national registry introduces an element of everyday fairness that people can understand. Yet, Spry acknowledged that the list is flawed and could do a better job weighing factors like how long the donated organ could help someone, time spent waiting and other aspects of individual situations.
"They're trying to come up with a fair allocation system that takes into consideration all of those things," Spry said.
That system is yet to come into place, so the Nakatas are trying their hardest to find a match so Nakata can see his son mature.
"What we're doing here is for my son," he said. "I don't want my son to grow up without a father."
If you want to help John Nakata, you can contact Sherry Nakata at 570-436-5114 or send an e-mail to Donate2John@gmail.com.