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Rebecca MacKinnon

I conduct research, writing and advocacy on global Internet policy, free expression, and the impact of digital technologies on human rights. My first book, Consent of the Networked: The Worldwide Struggle for Internet Freedom, was published by Basic Books in late January 2012. After leaving a 12-year career in China and Japan with CNN, I co-founded Global Voices with Ethan Zuckerman in 2004, and have been working on citizen media projects and free speech advocacy ever since. I currently serve on GV's board. For more about me click here.

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Latest posts by Rebecca MacKinnon

18 October 2014

Bloggers Behind Bars: Ethiopia's Zone9ers and Threats to Online Speech Across the Globe

Governments in a growing list of nations have recognized that modern-day connectivity can prove a lethal challenge to their legitimacy and very existence.

9 August 2012

Netizen Report: Pan-African Edition

This week's Netizen Report starts out in Sub-Saharan Africa, where we look at how Pan-African organizations and a number of countries are debating issues of free expression online. From there, we move on to cover the latest developments in the struggle for freedom and control of the Internet in Myanmar, China, France, United States, the United Nations, Facebookistan, and beyond...

2 August 2012

Netizen Report: Olympic Edition

This week's report focuses on the Olympics. While the opening ceremony celebrated freedom and creativity, the games have in reality been plagued by widespread censorship and restrictions online. In addition, we discuss the challenges Twitter has faced as a primary platform for discussions online during the Games. After leaving London, we go to China, Tajikstan and beyond.

26 July 2012

Netizen Report: Security Edition

This week's Netizen Report focuses on the theme of cybersecurity. We begin in Washington DC, where lawmakers have made promising amendments to the proposed Cybersecurity Act of 2012. From there, we move to the Europe, where the European Commission has opened up a forum for public input on similar legislation. Then, we move to the UK, China and beyond.

19 July 2012

Netizen Report: Neutrality Edition

We begin this week’s Netizen Report with a battle between South Korea’s net neutrality advocates and telecommunications companies, who are at odds after the Korean Communications Commission allowed three domestic mobile carriers to block access or add surcharges for mobile voice over Internet protocol (VOIP) services. Opponents to this latest move include several civil society groups and Google. From there we move on to net neutrality debates in the United States and Brazil, before embarking on our global tour of the ongoing struggle over freedom and control of the Internet.

11 July 2012

Netizen Report: Blackout Edition

This week we focus in on Russia, where the government has proposed a draft bill that would censor the Internet in ways similar to China's Great Firewall. Russia's Wikipedia went dark on Tuesday in protest, coinciding with a debate on the bill in the Russian Parliament. From there, we look at net activism issues in Syria, Malaysia, Iran and beyond.

5 July 2012

Netizen Report: Journalism Edition

In this week's Netizen Report we highlight the growing role for citizen journalism in nations that are undergoing political unrest. We begin in Iraq and Syria, before moving to Mexico, where online media platforms are providing an alternative perspective on the Presidential elections. From there we report on exciting trends in netizen activism in Egypt, Taiwan and around the world.

27 June 2012

Netizen Report: Copyright Edition

This week's edition begins in Japan where disproportionate penalties for copyright violations reached new heights in with the passage of a new bill this month that will make downloading copyrighted material punishable by imprisonment or fines. A number of other countries have also moved to criminalize copyright infringement. Our team then moves on to update our global readership on the latest developments and controversies related to freedom and control of the Internet around the world.

21 June 2012

Netizen Report: Transition Edition

This week's Netizen Report begins in Myanmar, where the government's new resolve for an open Internet is being tested this week by a state of emergency declared to contain deadly clashes between Muslims and Buddhists in the nation’s western Rakhine state. From there we report on the latest developments in the struggle for online freedom around the world from Azerbaijan to the United Kingdom to Googledom.

14 June 2012

Netizen Report: Intervention Edition

Throughout this week's edition we highlight examples of government intervention to limit free speech online, ostensibly "for the greater good". We begin in Kuwait, where a Shi’ite man has been sentenced to prison for ten years for allegedly insulting the Prophet Mohammad and Sunni Muslims via Twitter. From there we travel to China, India, South Africa, Tunisia, Oman, Facebookistan, and beyond.