Rebecca MacKinnon in Beijing
September 16, 1969 |
Berkeley, California, USA
Rebecca MacKinnon is a blogger and co-founder of Global Voices Online. She is notable as a former CNN journalist who headed the CNN bureaus in Beijing and later in Tokyo. She is on the Board of Directors of the Global Network Initiative and the Committee to Protect Journalists, and is currently with the New America Foundation as a Bernard L. Schwartz fellow.
Rebecca MacKinnon was born in Berkeley, California, in 1969. When she was three years old, MacKinnon's family moved to Tempe, Arizona, where her father Stephen R. MacKinnon took a job as Professor of Chinese History at Arizona State University. Her parents' academic research caused her to spend most of her primary school years in Delhi, India, Hong Kong, and Beijing, China, before moving back to Arizona for middle and high school. She graduated from Tempe High in 1987.
MacKinnon joined CNN in 1992 as Beijing Bureau Assistant and moved up to Producer/Correspondent by 1997 and Bureau Chief by 1998. In 2001 she became Tokyo Bureau Chief. During her time with CNN, she interviewed notable leaders including Junichiro Koizumi, Dalai Lama, Pervez Musharraf, and Mohammad Khatami.
In the spring of 2004, MacKinnon was a fellow of the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. That summer, she joined Harvard Law School's Berkman Center for Internet & Society as a Research Fellow, where she remained until December 2006. Among her projects at the Berkman Center, MacKinnon founded Global Voices Online in collaboration with Ethan Zuckerman.
In January 2007 she joined the Journalism and Media Studies Center at the University of Hong Kong, where she remained until January 2009. From February 2009 to January 2010, she conducted research as an Open Society Fellow, funded by George Soros' Open Society Institute. Then in February 2010 she joined Princeton University's Center for Information Technology Policy where she is a visiting fellow, working on a book about the future of freedom in the Internet age. As of September 2010 she is also fellow at the New America Foundation. Regarding the Middle East, MacKinnon wrote that "the Internet empowers people and helps to bring about the peaceful changes associated with the Arab Spring".
In January 2007, she joined the inaugural Wikimedia Foundation Advisory Board.
MacKinnon's first book, Consent of the Networked: The Worldwide Struggle For Internet Freedom (ISBN 978-0465024421), was published by Basic Books in January 2012. In an interview, she said that she argues in the book (among other things) that:
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