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Running a Website from Your Prison Cell 478

Eh-Wire writes "Although prisoners Internet access is highly restricted, this hasn't prevented many inmates from getting around the restrictions with the judicious use of phone and snail-mail privileges to network with friends, relatives, activists, and associates to provide content to their websites. Some use their websites to badger witnesses and prosecuters, while others plead their case or phish for pen-pals. Some have successfully challenged their convictions through their websites, which complicates efforts by authorities to silence them. Websites domiciled outside of the respective jurisdictions further complicate the issue. Yahoo News has additional commentary on this controversial subject."
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Running a Website from Your Prison Cell

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  • Prisoners (Score:4, Insightful)

    by schnits0r ( 633893 ) <nathannd@NOspam.sasktel.net> on Saturday April 16, 2005 @06:58PM (#12258109) Homepage Journal
    Why shouldn't they be allowed ot have their websites maintained in some fasion? They should be allowed to vote as citizens of a free country, so why can't they let their freedom of speech ring on the Internet, given the assumption that this would not comprimise safety or order?
    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:02PM (#12258137)
      If they were in there for possession, I've no problem.

      If they were in there for 9 years for fraudulently forging return headers for your spam empire, on the other hand...
    • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      If you're in prison, you've been convicted of a felony. Felons have no right to vote. Once you've been convicted of a felony, you're stripped of many of your rights for the rest of your life.
      • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Informative)

        by caino59 ( 313096 )
        sorry - wrong.

        you only lose your right to vote while you serve your sentence.

        right to own a gun - that varies by crime.

        non-violent crime, people normally can own arms after serving out their sentence.

        violent crime? no way, bub.
        • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Informative)

          by zippthorne ( 748122 )
          No in many states you lose your right to vote forever. In either case, by commiting a felony, you are essencially excluding yourself from the social contract by which you are afforded any rights at all (by ignoring the rights of others). Felons don't believe in your right to property/life/free express, etc. why should you agree to theirs? Certainly there may be some examples of felons who are reformed, but their restoration of rights is and should be at the largess of society at large.
          • Re:Prisoners (Score:2, Insightful)

            by op00to ( 219949 )
            How exactly would selling drugs to willing buyers (a felony in some circumstances) be ignoring the rights of others?

            Sorry, your broad brush doesn't really work for all situations.

            Taking away their voting right is just a convienent way to prevent disadvantaged people from being able to voice their concerns.
            • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Insightful)

              How exactly would selling drugs to willing buyers (a felony in some circumstances) be ignoring the rights of others?

              While I hate the futile "War on Drugs" as much as the next free-thinking person, you could make the argument that since selling drugs has measurable effects on the communities in which such purchases and use occur, you are at least potentially ignoring the rights of people in that neighborhood to live in a neighborhood free of those effects. Where the effects are bad, I think the argument i

            • Mod Parent up (Score:3, Informative)

              and someone slap the grandparent with a trout. I'm sick of that rhetoric. Yes you're right (some) criminals have ignored the rights of others, and perhaps they don't "deserve" rights. But our society is not based on the notion that rights are something you "deserve." I'm not talking about the right to drive or something (which is a privilege in US law anyway) but the right to vote, which is a fundamental component of participatory democracy. The theory of government that the right to vote is based on f
          • the social contract by which you are afforded any rights at all

            I don't know what country you come from, but in mine, it's the constitution that guarantees my rights, not some social contract. What you're saying sounds like I could lose the right to vote if I don't watch the political ads, because I've "violated the social contract".

            I prefer to have something more solid that a social contract or a click-wrap EULA defining my rights.
          • I disagree with that point. Imprisonment is the punishment. When you've been to jail, you are free to go - you've had your punishment, and you do not owe society anything.

            Excluding everyone who has committed a felony from society - like you say - only adds to the "pull" to make them commit another.

            • No you don't understand. The act of committing the felony is what excludes them from society. We can only elect to bring them back in. We should do so if they really want to come back in.

              to the other point: The constitution is designed to guarantee that government will not take away your rights, but it is not the source of those rights. The founders believed that those rights where given to us by our creator. If you don't believe in a creator, you can still believe in inalienable rights. Felony is jus
          • Example of a Felony (Score:5, Interesting)

            by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 16, 2005 @09:54PM (#12259060)
            Posession of any amount of Adderall is a felony. I shit you not. I was recently in a felony court in Houston for posession of 7 pills of Adderall. Less than a month after I was charged, a doctor lawfully gave me a perscription for Adderall, in light of my longstanding ADD diagnosis. This DOES NOT result in the felony charges being dropped. I still take Adderall to improve my concentration and actually do as well in school as a person of my intelligence should. I would have gotten it sooner but back when I was in middle school (with horrible grades) my parents thought that putting my on stimulants was a bad idea. The antidepressents I was given instead probably did more harm than good.

            Going to felony court was by far the scariest experience of my life. Compared to the fear I felt of the seemingly imminent ruination of my life spending the night with murdurers and rapists in Harris County lockup was a resort vacation. Not sure how long I would have lasted in prison though. I hope nobody else ever has to go through what I went through but I know it happens every day.

            Felons don't believe in your right to property/life/free express, etc. why should you agree to theirs?

            what?? I believe in the rights to life, liberty, free expression, and the persuit of happiness. It is the people who created these assinine laws we live under who have no respect for the rights of others. I have never stolen from anyone. I have never hurt anyone. My crime had no victim.

            Fortunately my story has a relatively happy ending. Thanks to my ludicrusly expensive lawyer and countless court appearances which caused me to miss alot class (I don't even live in Houston, I was just visiting my parents) I was able to get my charge reduced to a misdemeanor posession of a dangerous drug from felony posession of a controlled substance. At the completion of my year deffered adjudication I should be able to have the record sealed. Once I make sure Choicepoint has up to date information, I'll be able to once again look for a job and earn my keep in this hatefull society. I can't even imagine what it would have been like to look for a job with a felony on my record with people like you making up such a substantial portion of the populace. If I had been convicted of a felony, my plan was to take my life if 5 years after graduation I was still unable to find a job due to my record. I really do feel as though my life has been spared.

            I'm so thankful I didn't get convicted of a felony. I was pretty much at the mercy of the district attorney and the skill of my lawyer, but thank God things turned out ok. If I had been convicted of a felony losing the right to vote would have added insult to injury. I relish every opportunity to vote against the hatefilled Nazis who wrote our drug laws.

            Facing a felony has really changed me, and as far as I can tell it hasn't been for the better. I became distant, aloof, paranoid, and extremely depressed. My girlfriend left me. Given the condition I was in I can't say I blame her, though it would have really helped if she had stuck by me. They say that whatever doesn't kill you only makes you stronger. I don't know about that, but having been to hell and back I do feel like I can deal with anything. Certainly my parents, especially my father deserve alot of the credit for saving my life.

            Morals:

            If you use Adderall, make sure you have a prescription. They aren't hard to get and you can save you a life ruining experience.

            Get a good lawyer. Mine was one of the best in Houston and cost over $10,000. He was worth _every_dime_. He saved my life, and I will never forget it.

            Don't judge a person by their record, especially drug related convictions. The only difference between me and the millions of people rotting in prison for similarly pointless drug convictions is that my parents had the money (barely) to pay for a lawyer who could spare me that fate. I'm a gifted programmer, smart and socially conscious, and in general a good person. I'm also
            • Hello! (Score:3, Interesting)

              by lorcha ( 464930 )

              Posession of any amount of Adderall is a felony. I shit you not.

              Adderall is an AMPHETAMINE! You're goddamn right possession is a felony! What did you expect? Did you not even research what you were putting into your body without the advice and supervision of a physician?

              And where did you get amphetamines without a prescription?

              Look, I sympathize with you for what you had to go through. It's obvious that you need the meds since you eventually got a script. I'm glad you were able to get things more-or

          • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Insightful)

            by bigpat ( 158134 )
            Voting isn't a freedom, it is a means towards a more righteous government. That each of us has the ability to vote and change our laws in concert with the majority is the only thing that makes any law legitimate in the first place. There is nothing sacred about the law, it is merely the expressed will of society. But if you refuse to let a portion of society express its will, then you don't have a law you have a dictate. I would support exile if there was anyplace left to send someone, but as long as pe
      • Felons have no right to vote.

        Depends on where you live.
    • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Interesting)

      by YrWrstNtmr ( 564987 )
      Why shouldn't they be allowed ot have their websites maintained in some fasion...
      ...given the assumption that this would not comprimise safety or order?

      That is not always a safe assumption.
      FTA:"Some use their websites to badger witnesses and prosecuters..."

      Websites "run" by prisoners should be under the same regulations as other types of communication in and out of prison.
      Free speech? Should have thought of that before you did whatever it was that got you in there.

      • How does one effectively "badger" a witness or prosecuter from a website? Wouldn't the website...err...require said witnesses or prosecutors to...err...visit it? And, in which case, isn't that akin to going into prison and letting the convict cuss you out from behind the meeting glass?
        • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Insightful)

          by YrWrstNtmr ( 564987 )
          "To all my homies
          You know the face, you know the house.

          Do right by me and do what you know has to be done."

          This, of course requires cooperation and participation from his 'homies'. But witnesses have been known to be killed for testifying.

          • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Skye16 ( 685048 )
            Indeed, but they're talking about these webpages going up as a result of phone calls with inmates' families. If those phone calls are going to happen anyway, what's the difference of having a webpage or having their family phone another "homie" and pass on the message?
        • You know, I thought I would never do this but...

          In Soviet Russia, the websites visit you!
      • Free speech? Should have thought of that before you did whatever it was that got you in there.

        Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

        Nope, sorry - don't see an exclusion there for convicts or anyone else for that matter.

        • Depends on the definition of "the people". "The people" could very well be defined as only those who haven't committed felonies. It's actually a difficult definition. Who are the people?
    • I think it depends on the crime. If you rape or murder someone, they should lock you up and throw away the key.
    • logic? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by mnemonic_ ( 164550 )
      How does one "what they should be allowed to do" support another "what they should also be allowed to do"? Your logic is not circular, but non-existent. Support your propositions with reasons, not other propositions.
    • by John Seminal ( 698722 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:20PM (#12258231) Journal
      Why shouldn't they be allowed ot have their websites maintained in some fasion? They should be allowed to vote as citizens of a free country, so why can't they let their freedom of speech ring on the Internet, given the assumption that this would not comprimise safety or order?

      As soon as someone is convicted of a felony, they lose the right to vote, the freedom of speech, the freedom of association, all of them are gone. Jails only have 3 obligations by law. #1, they must feed you. #2, they must house you. #3, they must try and protect you from other inmates.

      Sometimes jails have a hard time with #3.

      Honestly, do you think an inmate should vote? Hell, they might elect the green party candidate. They have all day to read the papers. They might form an opinion.

      • Honestly, do you think an inmate should vote? Hell, they might elect the green party candidate. They have all day to read the papers. They might form an opinion.

        And this is bad why? Just because they commited a crime doesn't mean they can't make a sound vote. Depriving prisoners of the right to vote is just as unjustified as any other disenfrachisement.
    • A lot of times felons are restricted from voting, even when they are released.

      So long as they don't harrass witnesses, victims, the law, ex-jurors and judiciary, I don't see a problem with prisoners having web site priviledges. The problem is when they cross that line.
    • Re:Prisoners (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:31PM (#12258298)
      Have to post AC because I actually work for a Corrections Department in IT and I don't think it would be proper to do otherwise.

      Your assumptions are poor.

      They shouldn't be allowed access because they are criminals.

      I'm a very liberal fellow. But after working at a state correction department for several years now my few on inmate is anything but liberal.

      You give these people gum and they'll short a circuit with the wraper. You give them a floppy disk and they'll open a master lock (that's not a joke, the metalic part can very easily be made to open locks).

      When they are in prison they shouldn't be allowed access to the internet because they are criminals and they would abuse it. It's all nice to be Mr. Compasion until you realize that the reality is that anything you give them is abused. Over and over.

      Safety? How about inmates looking up how to break the system? Cheat the system. Hacks. What is going on in other prisons. You know how quickly disorder can occur. Imagine an inmate looking at a gang site. Gangs are *huge* issues in prisons. Gagns are all over prisons.

      Order? How about inmates googling information on other inmates. Really, safety and order are basically the same thing to a prison. Not sure why you listed them seperately.

      Hell, it's bad enough keeping them off our networks. They aren't allowed. But you would be *shocked* to see what inmates can think of. Not everyone in jail is an idiot, and they have a lot of times on their hand. I've seen work MaCgyver would be proud of getting stolen parts onto the network.
      • Re:Prisoners (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 16, 2005 @08:17PM (#12258562)
        who would have guessed... You take away most the freedoms of a person and they rebel and try to make the job of their opressors as difficult as possible.
      • Re:Prisoners (Score:3, Insightful)

        by vhogemann ( 797994 )
        Sorry, but YOUR assumptions are even poorer.

        Isn't the whole prision thing a way to correct the prisioner's behavior, and to re-integrate him to the society? How can we do that if we don't trust them enought even to use a computer?

        Shall we keep all prisioners all tied up, like Hannibal Lecter, to prevent them from doing harm? This is fscking insane!!

        If the prisioner has a good behavior, and is really commited to pay for its crimes, then why he should not be allowed to use a computer to, for example, send
      • Re:Prisoners (Score:4, Insightful)

        by mthreat ( 632318 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @10:00PM (#12259086) Homepage
        I have to post as a non-Anonymous Coward because I was in prison for several years and I think it would be cowardly to do otherwise.

        You say these inmates could look up how to break the system, cheat the system, find out what is going on in other prisons, read about gangs, get information on other inmates using Google, etc.

        I hate to break it to you, but they can do all this without using the Internet. How? Have people on the outside access the information (on the Internet or other places), print it out, and mail it in. And yes, I know, the geniuses in the prison mail room check incoming mail for "inappropriate" material. There are ways around this too. So then what, cut off their mail and contact with society?

        Don't be so judgemental on people in prison. Bertrand Russell [wikipedia.org] was in prison.

        On the other hand, I think it was Winston Churchill who said if you want to see the scum of the earth, go to any prison and watch shift change.

    • Are you serious?

      You are in prison because, with your original freedoms, you have done something wrong. Thus, you're freedoms are removed for X amount of time.

      This includes the right to vote in a lot of places.

      ~X~
    • by Corpus_Callosum ( 617295 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @08:01PM (#12258445) Homepage
      Modern correctional intutitions are quite possibly the most culturally destructive institutions on the planet.

      Consider for a moment what a prison system does:

      Brings criminals together

      Forces criminals to learn discipline, but particularly respect for more powerful criminals. By the time most inmates get out of prison, they will be affiliated with one or more criminal organizations mostly due to the fact that such affiliations are more or less required in prison to guarantee survival.

      What do you think the ciminals talk about in a prison? How to evade the law, get out of trouble, do bigger jobs and scams, etc.. etc.. These topics are raised to an artform in such an environment

      by virtue of the fact that so many criminals have been brought together, the best methods for breaking and evading the law for profit are naturally present in the minds of those that share a single location. Over time, the best methods are distilled into the common knowledge-pool inside the walls of the institution. In effect, this makes a prison much like a University, where the best ideas naturally distill out of the population of students and researchers. Only, in this case, we are dealing with socially destructive concepts.
      So consider what we are doing when we put a convict into a prison:

      We are paying tax dollars to educate the convict on sophisticated, state-of-the-art means to evade and break the law

      We are hardening the criminal, training him and toughening him up

      We are putting the criminal in a place where he can be recruited by crime syndicates and organizations
      A prison is a quite ridiculous way to punish, because it punishes the system exponentially more than it punishes the criminal.

      Modern prison systems are directly responsible for the nature and degree of organized crime and as an indirect result, corruption in the modern world (because the power that organize crime wields is generally directed towards the foundations of the system).

      Now you want to give them websites? Hmph!

      Seriously, though, the system needs to change. Putting criminals together is the worst possible thing for society. It would be much, much better to keep them in strict isolation or have some means of making sure that the influences around them are positive rather than negative.

      • Raised some excellent points there, but you forgot two:

        When a criminal has spent several years in prison with absolutely fuck-all hope for any sort of decent employment, yet all of the above has happened to them, they are quite obviously going to turn to crime again.

        The people in prison who have committed the smaller, non-violent crimes are going to have a much worse time in prison than those who have committed serious violent crimes - which defeats the whole purpose in a way.
      • by HiThere ( 15173 ) * <`charleshixsn' `at' `earthlink.net'> on Saturday April 16, 2005 @11:27PM (#12259470)
        I would agree to keeping them in strict isolation, but strict isolation would mean protecting them from the guards as well as from other prisoners.

        I agree that prisons have all of the defects you list, and I could extend the list. And some people do need to be punished.

        My solution would be STRICT isolation...as in, sensory deprivation. If that's your goal, then the obvious technique is total isolation. And cut the sentences by a factor of 10 (or more...some experimentation would necessarily be needed).

        But strict isolation also means NO ADVERTISEMENTS, NO MORALITY LECTURES, NO BEATINGS. Probably it would be a good idea to provide each prisoner with a good tough book on hatha yoga. One that provided instruction in the traditional poses and warnings, if needed, on dangers of any particular position. And a good set of isometric limbering up exercises. Figure out how tall the prisoner is, and stick him in a concrete cube 5 inches larger in every direction than his height. Feed him through a bellamy tube (compressed air delivery). Weld the door shut. Make everything sturdy as a first consideration, and without dangerous corners or edges for another, because if he gets hurt, nobody's going to know. (I warned that it would be necessary to cut the sentence length.) Pad the walls and floor thickly (but not so that he can't tell that it's cement underneath). This improves sound isolation...but there are sound baffles within the cement anyway, so that aspect isn't very important. There is no bed. The floor padding is thick enough that he doesn't need one. Filter the air on the way into the cell to remove not only all pollen, etc., but also to remove all scents of any sort, except, perhaps the merest trace of ozone. I'm not sure how he should clean himself, though provisions need to be made so that he can do so as he sees fit. The temperature should be controlled to an unvarying 80 Farhenheit (is 80 right? Perhaps slightly higher, and the light should be controlled by a dimmer knob to whatever he sets it at. (LEDs, probably, but full spectrum, and only if they fix that flicker problem. We don't want any changes that aren't initiated by the inmate.)

        Alternatively, one could go for a more complete sensory deprivation experience, and reduce the sentences even further (by at least another factor of 10). But I'm not certain that wouldn't do most people more harm than good.

        In any case, a part of the purpose of this scenario is to protect the prisoner from both the guards and other prisoners as well as to give him a chance to decide that he doesn't want to end up here again, and hopefully understand what his mistake was. (And to break the circle of prison gangs.)

    • Uh.. the entire concept of imprisonment is to take away your freedom because you've broken laws, presumably causing problems for the rest of the society. Although I think I agree that prisoners should be allowed to have websites, most of the concept of taking away your freedom disappears if you're allowed to communicate freely.
  • by Rick Zeman ( 15628 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @06:59PM (#12258113)
    ...I guess to any slashdotter, NO Internet access would be cruel and unusual punishment.
    • ...I guess to any slashdotter, NO Internet access would be cruel and unusual punishment.

      No, what is CRUEL is when an inmate beats you up. What is UNUSUAL is when, after the beating, he kisses you and says "I'm gonna take care of my baby".

      Man, that makes me want to puke. A beating then a fucking. YUK!

      • No, what is CRUEL is when an inmate beats you up. What is UNUSUAL is when, after the beating, he kisses you and says "I'm gonna take care of my baby".

        Man, that makes me want to puke. A beating then a fucking. YUK!


        Sounds like the voice of experience talking....
        • Sounds like the voice of experience talking

          I might not have went to jail, but I did go to an American middle school. The experiances are not that different.

          • I might not have went to jail, but I did go to an American middle school. The experiances are not that different.

            I've read some stupid things on slashdot (and I've been doing it since the beginning) but that statement ranks in my "top 5 all-time stupid statements. Congratulations.
            • I might not have went to jail, but I did go to an American middle school. The experiances are not that different.

              I've read some stupid things on slashdot (and I've been doing it since the beginning) but that statement ranks in my "top 5 all-time stupid statements. Congratulations.

              Obviously, you never had Mike Smith take you out back, behind the gym, behind the dumpsters, and make you pay for every IQ point god gave you. And he never gave you the lollypop he promised.

              Seriously, I was not joking wit

              • You have obviously never been to prison. My father has been a corrections officer in new york state for over 15 years. Getting beat up by somebody in junior high is nothing compared to the shit that goes on in prison. I went to some crappy ass schools in some of the worst area's. Never heard of a guy being gang raped because he was a new transfer student. Never heard of a freshman having all of his teeth knocked out so he can be forced to suck dick. Never heard of any kids in any school being cut mouth to e
  • So what... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by BlacBaron ( 875559 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:00PM (#12258123) Homepage
    just because they can make content for a website doesn't mean that anyones going to go to it. How many of these prisoner websites are only visited by relatives curious about how they are fairing?
  • YRO? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TFGeditor ( 737839 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:02PM (#12258134) Homepage
    Why wasn't this headed "Your Rights Online"?
    • Re:YRO? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by justforaday ( 560408 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:07PM (#12258153)
      Seriously, the one time they could've used that category in a way that makes sense and they didn't...
      • Because obviously the criminals are Other People, not You. Slashdot is for upstanding, moral, law-abiding citizens, not criminals. And obviously having someone else set up a web site to speak on your behalf isn't a right.

        Wait, you mean criminals have rights too? Somehow that wasn't what the summary sounded like...

  • re (Score:5, Funny)

    by computerme ( 655703 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:04PM (#12258142)
    All I know is that if i were them I would DOWNLOAD EVERYTHING...

    What's the worse the could do to me? ;)
  • Don't you need more than the 15 ACLU lawyers that are actually for inmates doing this in order for it to be considered "controversial?"

  • by Prodigy Savant ( 543565 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:07PM (#12258157) Homepage Journal
    Keith Maydak in for a telephone scam is here. [kmf.org]

    Juan Melendez is here [ccadp.org]

    ... thanks, google:)
  • ....because this is where we'll all be if RIAA/MPAA and other "associations" for ripping off customers then bringing criminal and civil charges against them have their way
  • Herodotus (Score:5, Funny)

    by TheOtherChimeraTwin ( 697085 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:11PM (#12258187)
    A historian named Herodotus tells of a thief who was to be executed. As he was taken away he made a bargain with the king: in one year he would teach the king's favorite horse to surf the internet. The other prisoners watched the thief explaining FireFox to the horse and laughed. "You will not succeed," they told him. "No one can."

    To which the thief replied, "I have a year, and who knows what might happen in that time. The king might die. The horse might die. I might die. And perhaps the horse will learn to post on Slashdot.
    • You sir are an ass. If you had posted this just 10 days ago, I had mod points on two of my accounts at once, and could have put it at Score:3... why did you wait?
  • Easy! Just read the back of any 2600 magazine. Half of the classifieds in the back are for lonely inmates...
  • Sigh. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Solder Fumes ( 797270 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:17PM (#12258219)
    Yet again, Slashdot gets my hopes up with a headline that looks like it'll be a "how-to" article.
  • Hey man... (Score:5, Funny)

    by AliasMoze ( 623272 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:20PM (#12258230)
    ...pack a' smokes for a mod point.
  • by deft ( 253558 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:26PM (#12258267) Homepage
    Criminals of society being allowed to sit in a dark room on the internet all day, 365 days a year, while the rest of the world goes on around them!!!!??!?

    Thats not how I'd describe criminals in prison... its how I'd describe Slashdot readers.
  • Michael Ross (Score:4, Insightful)

    by trelanexiph ( 605826 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:39PM (#12258330) Homepage
    I have more than a passing famaliarity with the Michael Ross case. I waited up during January with the Rev Kobutsu Malone of the Engaged Zen Foundation (www.engaged-zen.org) waiting for the State of Connecticut to assist Mr Ross in suicide. Perhaps the death penalty may benifit someone, but in the case of Michael Ross the only person benifitting from his death is Michael Ross. Execution does not deterrance make, every criminal when they commit a crime believe they will get away with it, the punishment is no deterrant, that is why we have a criminal corrections system not a criminal punishment system. How do we treat this system? Very few believe in active correction, and the private companies running the prisons profit from keeping people in jail. Due to the nature of the system Michael Ross has decided it is better to die than to continue in this system. Perhaps considering this system it would be better that Mr Ross stuck around for awhile to share it.
  • by John Seminal ( 698722 ) on Saturday April 16, 2005 @07:41PM (#12258338) Journal
    How can you surf porn on the internet with your roomate 2 feet behind you? What would suck even worse is if he squirted you before you were done.

    Inmate 00343: "Can you turn around, HUH?"
    Inmate 87632: "It ain't my fault the room is 8 feet by 6 feet"
    Inmate 00343: "Just look at the wall, will ya"
    Inmate 87632: "Okay"
    Inmate 00343: *whispers* "Oh yeah, that's what I was looking for, nice big tits"
    Inmate 87632: *peaks over his shoulder at the laptop screen*
    Inmate 00343: "HEY, WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT WET STUFF ON THE BACK OF MY NECK???"
    Inmate 87632: *shrugs shoulders* "I think a bird crapped on you"

    Seriously, what do inmates need computers for. You know they are just going to make knives with the RAM DIMMS.

    Inmate 00343: *boots the laptop*
    Inmate 87632: "You looking for porn again?"
    Inmate 00343: "No, just going to read sla... HEY, the BIOS test only shows 128 megs, we had 256 megs"
    Inmate 87632: *starts sweating* "What do you mean, it was always 128, you know how slow the laptop is"

    Man, I love the adventures of Inmate 00343!!

  • by T-Ranger ( 10520 )
    *cough*RFC2549*cough*
  • It seems like an important part of a legal system in a democracy that prisoners can get their side of the story out. That's both to ensure that the prison system itself is run well and to help reverse wrongful convictions.

    If and when a prisoner abuses the right in order to commit further crimes, only then should his ability to publish be restricted. But he shouldn't be restricted merely because what he says is uncomfortable for prison authorities. He also shouldn't be restricted merely if he is (thought
  • These cons are there to serve a debt owed to society, not enjoy a free ride at our expense! no more internet use, spousal vists, gym equipment,tv, etc enough is enough. they should be out to work 8 - 10 hrs daily doing something for the community at large and for no pay ( I think they get a small allowance for prison jobs ). The rest of us work our asses off to obtain these things.
  • Hum... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by yoshi_mon ( 172895 ) on Sunday April 17, 2005 @01:59AM (#12260110)
    Lets see as little as 2 years ago we had the highest incarceration rate [csmonitor.com] in the world, we have put to death innocent people [american-partisan.com], and if you look you can find more ugly stories about the failed war on drugs [independent.org] than you can shake a stick at.

    And after all this I'm supposed to care about a few prisoners who make websites? Ooookkkk.

    Oh, and all you right wing guys feel free to start flaming me............now.

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