If there’s anything worse than being in a California state penitentiary, it’s not being able to check if you’ve been tagged in any photos lately. This dual fate of horror is now a reality for CA inmates, NBC reports.
The state’s apparently not thrilled with social media savvy criminals, and is “working with Facebook to shut down accounts that have been updated since the prisoner’s incarceration.” Apparently, some inmates are using FB to engage in nefarious criminal activity over the internet. Like stealing WoW gold? No! Creepier things: “One inmate, convicted for child molestation, allegedly harassed his now 17-year-old victim by finding information about her from social media sites MySpace and Facebook, drew pictures of her and sent them to her home address.” But many “are simply updating their Facebook pages with mundane updates such as ‘Listenin 2 sum music tryin 2 unwind.'” Which really isn’t so bad at all.
How are they pulling this off? Smuggled phones, which have been problematic for cops and congress for some time now.
But I do wonder—if Facebook replaces the written letter as the standard way for an inmate to reach out to friends and loved ones, why should the former be prohibited? I understand prison’s not supposed to be fun, so maybe Farmville grinding isn’t in the picture, but for many, Facebook is the way to stay in touch. Sending pervy drawings to teens isn’t okay, but if a convict wants to say hello to his mother or see photos of his daughter, surely the state could allow him to do so via Facebook, perhaps with some supervision. And besides, you can’t hide a shank in a Facebook IM. [NBC News]