The subject of game consoles in prisons is invariably a controversial one.
Some think that convicts don’t deserve what might be considered a luxury. Others believe the relaxation afforded by gaming might make prison a safer place.
But U.K. newspaper The Guardian reports that officials at Britain’s Rye Hill prison have removed PlayStations 3s from the inmate population over fears that prisoners will use the system’s built-in WiFi capability to communicate with those on the outside. A prison official told The Guardian:
PlayStation 3 consoles are barred on the grounds that they have the capability to send and receive radio signals as an integral part of the equipment.
Some inmates were said to be chatting with friends. No information is provided on how those inmates obtained access to a WiFi signal, which might seem to be at least as important an issue, if not more so.
GamePolitics readers may recall that a similar issue was raised last month by Britain’s Serious Organized Crime Agency.
UPDATE: IncGamers contacted the British Ministry of Justice and learned that Internet-capable consoles are already banned. This is not the first time that there has been confusion in the U.K. on this issue.