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54 Federal Communications Law Journal 391 (2002)


As the numbers of prisons and prisoners continue to increase, so does the market for prison services. One of the more lucrative segments of this industry is the telephone market. To the extent that the services are provided to the prisoners, the relationship resembles a third party beneficiary contract, but due to the perverse financial incentives and the political climate surrounding prisons and prisoners, neither the state nor the private entity acts in the best interests of the consumers in particular or of society in general. This Article will analyze the efficiency of these contracts, introduce alternate arrangements, and compare the efficiency of the present contracts to the alternatives.