Prison Profiteer Global Tel Link Charges Prisoners by the Minute for Reading

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Prison libraries of paper books are slowly disappearing. In their place prisoners are getting tablets. But profits are being made when prisoners send emails, videoconferencing with family, listening to music, and reading.

In West Virginia, a company called Global Tel Link has the contract to provide prisoners in ten prisons with “free” tablets, for which they charge $0.05/minute for reading ebooks, primarily drawn from Project Gutenberg, a free online service of volunteer-produced, public domain and CC-licensed ebooks.