Redbox kiosks are cheap and convenient sources for DVD rentals. And, according to a prosecutor in southern Indiana, they’re corrupting our children. Vanderburgh County Prosecutor Stanley Levco has sent letters threatening legal action against retailers providing space to Redbox and MovieCube kiosks. The problem? Automated kiosks don’t have enough safeguards preventing minors from renting material that could theoretically harm them.
In Vanderburgh County, one letter — addressed to the general manager of a Schnuck’s grocery store and dated Jan. 27 — cites an Indiana law prohibiting dissemination of matter harmful to minors, a Class D felony. It says that category might include adult-rated videos in that store’s MovieCube kiosk, a Redbox competitor.
“We suggest that the machine or machines dispensing these materials at your location no longer provide access to videos, movies, games” and other material that are unrated or have ratings of R or even PG, the letter says.
Limiting kiosks’ selection to only G-rated movies certainly limits their usefulness and relevance, and means that renters will need to turn to brick-and-mortar video stores to rent movies with adult content. We’re sure it’s just a coincidence that the idea for the prosecutor’s action against video kiosks came from an attorney representing the owner of several Indiana video stores.
“I’m not on a crusade,” said Paul Black, an Evansville attorney who says he suggested the inquiry to Levco’s office on behalf of a client who operates several video store locations. “We’re just looking for a level playing field here.”
Movie rental kiosks in Vanderburgh County hit with legal threat [Courier-Journal] (Thanks, Rob!)