Effective Date: May 26, 2010
PROTECTING THE PRIVACY OF CHILDREN
Children should always get permission from their parents before sending any information about themselves (such as their names, email addresses, and phone numbers) over the Internet, to us or to anyone else. Our website is not directed at children under the age of 13 and we won’t knowingly allow anyone under the age of 13 to provide us any personally identifying information. If you’re under 13, please don’t provide any information about yourself on this website.
TYPES OF INFORMATION WE COLLECT
The information we gather falls into two categories: (1) information voluntarily supplied by visitors to the site when they register, establish or update their user profile, post in any of the public posting areas on our site, enter a sweepstakes or contest, or use the “Contact Us” function on the site to communicate with us; and (2) tracking information gathered as visitors navigate through our website and review our email newsletters and other email messages. This information may be collected directly by us or it may be collected by a third-party service provider on our behalf. Third parties featured on or linked to by our website, such as advertisers, corporate sponsors and others who display ads or other promotional messages on our site or offer products and services through our site (“Advertisers”), may be gathering information as well, through processes we don't control.
Information You Voluntarily Supply to Us
We may collect and store information that you voluntarily supply to us while on our site. This may include personally identifying information if you choose to provide it. In accessing and using The Bay Citizen website, you may have the opportunity to voluntarily submit some or all of the following types of information:
- Contact information, such as your name, email address, postal address, and phone number;
- Age and date of birth;
- Information for a user profile, such as your bio, the address of your website, links to your Facebook page, LinkedIn profile, Twitter account, etc.;
- Communications preferences, such as which newsletters you would like to receive;
- Payment information (such as a credit card number) necessary to process a requested transaction (for example, if you make a donation to The Bay Citizen through our site);
- Information posted in community discussions and other interactive areas of our site; and
- Questions or correspondence you send to us through the “Contact Us” function available on our site.
You are not required to provide information about yourself to visit or use our site. However, if you wish to post comments on our site or receive our newsletters, you will be required to register. To register, you must provide personal information and create a username and a password.
Information That Is Automatically Collected
We also may collect and store, and permit our service providers to collect and store, information that does not identify you personally that is generated automatically as you navigate through the site. For example, we and our service providers may collect limited information about your computer configuration when you visit our site, including the type of browser software you use, the operating system you're running, the resolution of your computer monitor, the website that referred you, and your IP address. (Your IP address is a numerical address that is used by computers connected to the Internet to identify your computer so that data – such as the web pages you want to view – can be transmitted to you. We also use IP address information for systems administration and trouble shooting purposes.) We use this information to make our site as useful as we can for as many users as possible.
The help function on most web browsers contains information on how to set your browser to notify you before accepting a cookie or to disable cookies entirely. However, if you don't accept cookies, you won't be able to take advantage of various features on our site that are available to other visitors. For example, we won’t be able to store your log-in information, so that you don’t have to log in each time you visit, unless you accept cookies.
Information We Obtain From Other Sources
HOW WE USE COLLECTED INFORMATION
We use the information we collect from you while you are using the site in a variety of ways, including, for example, to process your registration, to provide you with services and communications that you have requested, to send you email updates, newsletters, and other communications, to customize features and Advertising that appear on the site, to deliver our site content to you, to measure site traffic, to measure user interests and traffic patterns, and to improve the site and the services and features offered via the site.
In addition, we may use your personal information to contact you for customer service purposes, to inform you of important changes or additions to our site or the services offered over our site, and to tell you about other products or services offered by The Bay Citizen, or by third parties, that we think may be of interest to you. We may send you these types of communications via email or direct mail. And if you have provided us with your telephone number, we may contact you by phone. (For example, if you use our “Contact Us” form to ask us a question or notify us about an issue and you choose to provide your phone number, we may call you to respond to your question or discuss the issue you’ve raised.)
Your Email Address
If you subscribe to one of our newsletters, we’ll use your email address to send that newsletter to you. In addition, we may email you with information about our website or other products or services offered by The Bay Citizen, or about third-party products or services that we think may be of interest to you. Although we hope you’ll find these communications informative and useful, if you don’t, you can always unsubscribe by following the simple instructions included in each email.
We also may use your email address to contact you from time to time for customer service purposes, or to send you administrative notices or other information about our site,as described above in the section titled “Generally”.
Information You Provide When Making a Donation
When you make a donation on our site, we collect personal information such as your name, email address and billing address, and also collect your credit card information. We will use your personal information to acknowledge receipt of your donation for tax purposes and to send you an email newsletter for donors (which you can opt out of receiving at any time by following the simple instructions included in each email). We also may use your personal information to contact you from time to time for other purposes, as described above in the section titled “Generally". The Bay Citizen does not store your credit card information; it is sent directly to our third-party credit card processor and is secured during transmission over the Internet using industry-standard secure sockets layer (SSL) encryption. Our credit card processor is authorized to use your credit card information only to process your donation, and for no other purposes.
Sweepstakes and Contest Entry Information
From time to time, we may offer sweepstakes, contests or other promotions on The Bay Citizen website. If you enter a promotion on our site, we'll ask you to provide information about yourself (such as your name, address, and email address). We'll need this information to contact you if you win, and we also may use this information to contact you for other purposes, as described above in the section titled “Generally”. We may share your entry information with any co-sponsor of the promotion. We'll identify the co-sponsor in the official rules of the promotion, which will be posted on our site. We also may share this information with shipping or fulfillment companies or other third-party service providers that help administer our promotions, such as by conducting drawings, and/or delivering prizes to winners. If you don't want us to collect the information requested on the entry form or to provide it to co-sponsors, please do not enter the promotion.
Data Collected in Connection with Ad Serving and Targeting
DISCLOSURE TO THIRD PARTIES
To help Advertisers (and their ad agencies) understand our audience and confirm the value of advertising on The Bay Citizen, we may present them with aggregate information on our audience and how our audience uses our site (for example, information on traffic to various pages within our site). We may provide similar information to foundations, corporate sponsors and others who may help fund our operations. This information does not identify you personally.
If you enter a contest or sweepstakes on our site, we may share your entry information with the co-sponsor of the promotion, as described below in the section titled “Sweepstakes and Contest Entry Information”.
Information You Post to PUBLIC AREAS OF Our Site
If you post a comment on our site or otherwise submit content for display in a public posting area of our site, we will identify you as the author of your posts by your username only, but users of our site who click on your username will be able to view your user profile. At a minimum, your user profile will contain your full name and username. If you wish, you can add other information to your profile, such as your bio, the URL of your website, and your social networking links (i.e., links to your Facebook page, your LinkedIn profile, your Twitter profile, etc.). Your email address will not be displayed as part of your user profile unless you elect to include it. If you do not wish your user profile to be made public, do not post comments or content to our site.
Please keep in mind that whenever you voluntarily make your personal information or other private information available for viewing by other users or third parties online - whether in your public profile, in comments posted to our site, or in other public posting areas of our site - that information can be seen, collected and used by anyone who uses our site; we are not able to control how they may use this information. We cannot be responsible for any use of such information by third parties.
How To Modify Your Account Information
If you are a registered user of our site, you can make changes to your newsletter subscription preferences, the information that appears in your user profile, and other account settings and preferences by logging in to the site and selecting the “Edit Profile” option. If you would like us to delete your user profile and shut down your account, please contact us with your request. We will disable your account within a reasonable period of time after receiving your request. Please note that we may need to retain some information to satisfy our legal and security obligations. For example, some of your information may remain in back-up storage even if you ask us to delete it.
Storage of Information
The information that we collect through The Bay Citizen website is stored within databases that we control (or databases hosted on our behalf) on servers maintained in protected environments. Any credit card information you provide on our site is secured for transmission over the Internet using industry-standard secure sockets layer (SSL) encryption. However, no physical or electronic security system is impenetrable. We cannot guarantee the security of our servers or databases, nor can we guarantee that information you supply will not be intercepted while being transmitted to us or our third-party service providers over the Internet.