Rebecca MacKinnon · June, 2005

I am co-founder with Ethan Zuckerman of Global Voices and presently a board member of the organization.

After wandering the earth for many years, I presently live in Washington, DC, where I am an independent writer, researcher and advocate for digital rights. Previously I founded and ran Ranking Digital Rights. My first book, Consent of the Networked: The Worldwide Struggle for Internet Freedom, was published in 2012. I am also a founding member of the Global Network Initiative and board member of the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Before moving to Washington DC in 2010 I was a visiting fellow at Princeton's Center For Information Technology Policy. In 2009 I was an Open Society Institute Fellow. In 2007 and 2008 I taught online journalism at the University of Hong Kong's Journalism and Media Studies Centre. From 2004-06 I spent three years at Harvard, mainly as a research fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, which is where Ethan and I started Global Voices.

Before all of that, from 1992-2003 I worked for CNN in Asia including as Bureau Chief in Beijing and Tokyo. I covered stories from Taiwan to Korea (North and South) to Pakistan. I'm fluent in Mandarin Chinese.

Email Rebecca MacKinnon

Latest posts by Rebecca MacKinnon from June, 2005

Questions for Chinese bloggers

  30 June 2005

I have some questions for Chinese and China-based bloggers out there. (Please forgive my rusty Chinese… I'm much better at reading than writing, I'm afraid.) The extent of China's web filtering is often dismissed in the West as not such a big deal because people can use proxies to get...

Skypecast: Freedom Blog winner Markus Beckedahl of Netzpolitik

  29 June 2005

Today's Global Voices Skypecast is with German blogger and activist Markus Beckedahl, author of Netzpolitik: a German-language blog about open source technologies, Internet-users’ rights and free expression in cyberspace. He is one of seven winners of this year's Freedom Blog Award, sponsored by Reporters Without Borders. Markus is chairman and...

Wednesday World Blog Roundup

  22 June 2005

Central Asia & the Caucuses: The Farsi blog Shared Pains (winner of the 2005 RSF Freedom Blog award) has a post in English on freedom of expression in Afghanistan (hat-tip to Afghan Lord). Registan points to an interview with the leader of Uzbekistan's opposition coalition. On the 40th day of...

How Iran filters the Internet

Microsoft is not the only U.S. company whose technology is assisting in blocking free speech, and China isn't the only country where it happens. The OpenNet Initiative and Berkman Center have just released a new report: Internet Filtering in Iran (PDF). The press release is here (also PDF..sorry). Here is...

Lebanon Skypecast #2: Blogger “Lebanon.Profile”

After hanging up the Skypeout call with Gustave of the Lebanese Political Journal, I called the Beirut cellphone of his co-blogger who goes by the blog-name “Lebanon.Profile.” LP prefers not to have his name revealed. As he explains in our conversation, if he identifies himself he won't be able to...

Lebanon Skypecast #1: Blogger Gustave Cordahi

In the wake of an election victory for Lebanon's anti-Syrian alliance and the asassination of another anti-Syrian politician, I spoke to two Beirut-based bloggers who author the popular blog, Lebanese Political Journal. My first interview was with blogger and journalist Gustave Cordahi, who blogs under the name “Cedar Guardian.” (Technical...

Declaration for a Free Internet

  20 June 2005

Reporters Without Borders and the OSCE (Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe) have just released a set of six recommendations which governments and corporations should follow in order to ensure a free internet. Full text of the Declaration : 1. Any law about the flow of information online must...

Iran: bloggers mull election results

With election authorities now ordering a partial recount and a run-off between Rafsanjani and the conservative Ahmadinejad scheduled for this coming Friday, bloggers continue to chew over the results and disagree about what to do next. From Teheran, Hossein Derakhshan (Hoder) writes of “the coming coup.” He says: “ All...

Petitions for jailed Iranian bloggers

The Committe to Protect Bloggers has an online petition calling for charges to be dropped against jailed Iranian blogger Omid Sheikhan. Click through to the links with more information on his case and offer your support if you agree with the cause. The CPB also has a petition campaign for...

Iran election: bloggers disappointed

NOTE: this post will be updated as more reaction comes in. The news is now out, Rafsanjani and Ahmadinejad are the two top vote-getters and will contest in a run-off. The bloggers’ favorite, reformist Dr. Mostafa Moeen, the only candidate with his own blog, did not do well. After visiting...

Chinese Bloggers on Censorship, MSN, Etc.

  17 June 2005

At CNBlog, Isaac says: “Don't Use MSN Spaces, ” and creates a NoMSN Technorati tag for the boycott movement. Kaihong posts a screenshot on Flickr showing results similar to what I found: the blog's title is filtered, but he was able to post sensitive words in the body of the...

Screenshots of Censorship

  16 June 2005

Some Chinese bloggers have said that they were able to set up Chinese language MSN Spaces blogs using the “forbidden” political words. To clarify the situation I tried to set up my own freedom loving Chinese blog. I went into the MSN Spaces Chinese interface at: http://spaces.msn.com/?mkt=zh-cn, and tried to...

Talking to Mr. Behi in Iran

On the eve of Iran's Presidential elections, I tracked down Mr. Behi in Teheran. (For consolidated blog coverage of the elections from within Iran – including election coverage from Hoder – as well as analysis from without, Iran Scan is a must-read.) Adventures with Mr. Behi is written by an...

Skypecast: Freedom Blog Winner Jeff Ooi

  16 June 2005

Over the coming weeks we are hoping to feature Skype interviews or online text chats (depending on what's posible) with the winners of the RSF Freedom Blog Awards. (We may need help from other bloggers talking to the recipients who don't speak English. If you'd like to help, please let...

How To Hack Chinese MSN Spaces to Use Banned Words

  15 June 2005

Thanks to Bennett Haselton of Peacefire.org for the following public service instructions for Chinese users wanting to circumvent the word filters on MSN Spaces China to put e.g. “democracy” in the title of their blogs. If somebody would like to translate these instructions into Chinese, please feel free to do...

Congratulations RSF Freedom Blog Winners!!

  15 June 2005

Reporters Sans Frontieres has announced the winners of the 2-month Freedom Blog Contest. Chosen by popular online vote from around 60 nominated blogs who “each in their own way, defend freedom of expression,” the winners are: ASIA: Screenshots by Jeff Ooi of Malaysia. (English) AFRICA AND THE MIDDLE EAST: Shared...

Bloggers of the world: help us find you

  12 June 2005

We've been hearing from some bloggers who feel that our Daily Global Blog Roundups have been missing things. There's an easy way to help us improve: Please help us write the daily roundups. When you come across blog posts you think we ought to include in the daily roundup, please...

China Update: more on blog registration and censorship

  12 June 2005

Microsoft has launched a Chinese-language version of it's Spaces blog hosting service, and guess what? Users are banned from using the word “democracy” and other politically sensitive words to label their blogs – although it does appear possible to use those words within blog posts, for now. (As noted in...

Hoder returns to Iran

Toronto-based Iranian blogger, Hossein Derakshan, aka Hoder has announced that he's returning to Iran next week, despite the possible risks. He writes: Despite the risks, I think this is the safest time for me to visit, because the regime is likely to behave more tolerantly right before the elections on...

Skypecast: Isaac Mao on China's crackdown

  10 June 2005

I spoke to Isaac Mao in Shanghai via Skype to get some clarification and detail about how the latest regulations requiring bloggers to register in China are actually being implemented – and interpreted. The conversation was exremely interesting. As usual, the situation on the ground is complicated and full of...

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