Tuesday, August 9, 2011
A Good Reason Not to Make Friends on Facebook
Get this: if an inmate had a Facebook page before he or she entered the system, they are allowed to keep it. They aren't supposed to post on it or anything until they are released but, that hasn't seemed to stop them so far. Apparently, some of the 7,000 (no typo, seven thousand) contraband cellphones they have found on inmates in state prisons so far this year are being used for more than just phoning home. Inmates post to their pages, make friend requests and, communicate with their gangs, all under the watchful eyes of the prison staff. Where do these phones come from?
OK, I hate to say it, but one has to assume either a few bad guards out to make money are bringing them in or the guards are too stupid to figure out how to keep them out from visitors who are sneaking them in. Can anyone say, search? Can anyone at CDCR say, metal detector? To be sure, it is tempting. A cellphone can garner as much as $1,000 on the prison black market.
So, what are inmates doing on their Facebook pages? According to one story, plenty. Inmates have made sexual advances and made threats towards past victim. One has to wonder how many scams an enterprising inmate can concoct from his lonely prison cell.
Fortunately, Facebook is doing the right thing and cooperating with law enforcement in tracking down prison FB pages and shutting them down. I am now waiting for the other shoe to drop when the ACLU steps in to claim it is a violation of prisoners rights. Does anyone besides me remember when prisoners lost all their rights and had to have them restored by a sympathetic court when they got out of prison?