As close as you want to get to jail

Want to go to jail?

The Georgia Department of Corrections allows you to do just that from your home PC, simply by logging onto its World Wide Web site and taking a virtual tour of a cellblock, a dormitory, and a prison kitchen.

The feature was one of many that were added when the department retooled its Web site in May. Other features include a sex offender registry; the ability to search for an inmate by name and retrieve a color photograph; and a search for statistics, such as white males jailed for armed robbery.

"It's all simply to tell everyone the truth about what we do," said Brian Owens, the director of the Office of Planning and Analysis for the department.

Last summer, a working group of about six people began to brainstorm ways to update the department's site.

The idea was to make the department as open to the public as possible, Owens said. The idea for the 360-degree prison tour was an effort to provide an "unfiltered view" of what prison is.

"I don't think you'd deter people with it," Owens said, " but you'd dispel myths about prisons." He said most opinions about prisons come from movies and the media, which is often very distorted.

The virtual tour also serves as a way to attract people to the site, who would then see the other features. When the site was launched, the department recorded 2.8 million individual pages accessed in the first 72 hours.

Owens said the site is still being updated, including the virtual tour. He said that there could be virtual tours of alternative centers, such as transition, diversion and detention centers.

Featured

  • Defense
    Ryan D. McCarthy being sworn in as Army Secretary Oct. 10, 2019. (Photo credit: Sgt. Dana Clarke/U.S. Army)

    Army wants to spend nearly $1B on cloud, data by 2025

    Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said lack of funding or a potential delay in the JEDI cloud bid "strikes to the heart of our concern."

  • Congress
    Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at the Hack the Capitol conference Sept. 20, 2018

    Jim Langevin's view from the Hill

    As chairman of of the Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committe and a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rhode Island Democrat Jim Langevin is one of the most influential voices on cybersecurity in Congress.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.