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Jail Showing Ads on Video Visitation System

POSTED: Thursday, October 8, 2009 - 10:14am

UPDATED: Thursday, June 3, 2010 - 10:58pm

A Florida jail is selling ads targeting a truly captive audience. Florida's Charlotte County Sheriff's Office Corrections Division recently started showing advertisements on their video visitation screens.

Officials with the jail say they may be the first in the country to implement the idea. The new advertisement program offers great potential for attorneys and other services of interest for inmates and visitors.

A few months ago the Charlotte County Jail added video visitation for inmates in a separate building so inmates can have video contact with their friends, loved ones, and professionals. Visitors are no longer allowed to go into the main jail building for visitations.

Officials with the Bureau of Corrections say the video terminals offer the opportunity to place advertisements that will be seen by both inmates and visitors and say the idea may be the first in the whole country. The ads have potential for over 500 viewers per day from the in-custody audience and an additional 25 screens available for visitors.

The ad cost is 60-cents for a two minute time frame for 365 days of advertisement, or a total cost for one looped ad will be $1,533 per year.

Currently, there are 50 available ad spaces available and ad spaces will be sold on a first-come priority. Funds collected from this ad program are returned to the Inmate Welfare Fund. Ads on screen now also include addiction services, public defender, jail information, and are available to other services of interest for inmates and visitors.