High Tech Safety: Using Web Cameras for the Purpose of Prison Visitation




Mederson, Mark A.

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This study examines how satisfied inmates are with their experiences while visiting family using either a face-to-face method at the prison facility or a video mediated, or web camera, communication process between the inmate at the prison and the family member(s) at home. Previous research shows that face-to-face visitation between inmates and their family can effectively reduce recidivism rates. A dramatic increase in the number of incarcerated Americans has resulted in an increase in the construction of new prisons in America, with most of these prisons now being built in ii rural, remote areas. Building prisons in remote areas has diminished the opportunities for face-to-face visitation. The results of the survey conducted for this paper show that although inmates are equally satisfied with both face-to-face and web camera visitations, they thoroughly enjoy the physical contact during the face-to-face visit and dislike the recurring technical problems with the web camera visitation system in use at the prison where this study was conducted.



Web camera, Prison visitation, Media richness, Media naturalness


Mederson, M. A. (2011). <i>High tech safety: Using web cameras for the purpose of prison visitation</i> (Unpublished thesis). Texas State University-San Marcos, San Marcos, Texas.


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