Video Calling

The for-profit video calling industry has been quietly sweeping the nation's state prisons and county jails. Unfortunately, in order to stimulate demand for their low-quality product, jails and video calling companies often work together to shut down traditional in-person visitation rooms and instead require families to pay up to $1.50 per minute for visits via computer screen. With some notable exceptions, video technology is poorly designed, does not work well, and makes a trying time for families even more challenging.

The Prison Policy Initiative and partners across the country have been fighting this industry at the local level, and now we are taking the call for regulation all the way to the Federal Communications Commission. In January 2015, we released the first comprehensive national survey of the video calling industry in prison and jails.

Our report:


We also collaborated with NYC comedians to challenge the industry's offensive claim that video visitation is "just like Skype" with 4 short videos:

Press coverage and editorial support

Blog posts

See also:

Our page about bringing fairness to the prison and jail telephone industry and other reports about video visitation



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Events

  • May 15, 2018:
    Our Policy Analyst Lucius Couloute will be at the LEDA Summit on Race and Inclusion in Holland, Michigan, presenting his research on the challenges and disadvantages people face when they are released from prison. Tickets are available on LEDA’s website.

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