Independent profiles international Internet entrepreneur Buckman '91

The Independent profiles John Buckman ’91, calling him “a man without borders, who splits his time between London and Silicon Valley, running two businesses, indulging his passions for the arts, and campaigning for freedom on the Internet.”

Buckman heads the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which focuses on Internet issues around free speech, privacy, innovation, and consumer rights, and  “goes into battle to shape copyright and free-speech laws through the U.S. court system.”

It is a vision of the web that is under constant threat.

One of Buckman’s businesses is Magnatune, self-described as offering “music downloads and music streaming without being evil.” The site distributes world and classical music and defunct styles of 1980s electronica, and unlike traditional labels Magnatune lets the artists keep the rights to their work. His other venture is BookMooch, “whose 250,000 members swap second-hand books amongst themselves.”

Writer Stephen Foley suggests that these ventures “speak to Mr. Buckman’s belief that the world is at its best when people collaborate, share and create, and where the internet is the most powerful force for achieving these goals. It is a vision of the web that is under constant threat from corporations that aggressively enforce ‘all rights reserved’ copyright, and from governments and courts who spend too much time snooping on what people do online.” View story from The Independent, Aug. 11, 2011.

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