(Updated August 28, 2020)
Once upon a time there was a little girl who loved to pick flowers as she wandered through the thick forests. Let’s call her Goldie. One day, Goldie came upon a small cabin in the woods. Instead of knocking on the door, she just walked right on in. She had never heard of privacy and didn’t realize it was really important.
Because it’s important, I want you to know I value it. No one likes getting emails they didn’t actually sign up for, no matter how fantastical the content, and I won’t use any information you give me in any way except how it was intended.
Here’s the thing about websites – they do store SOME data. But I’m going to tell you what I store (not much) and what you can do about it if you don’t like that.
First off, know that the information I store is information you give me freely. My site is protected by SSL which ensures that everything sent to or from my server is encrypted. In addition, I use very powerful security software to maintain security on my site to the best of my ability.
Sadly, there are many people who would love to fill any website with spam comments. My site is no exception. I use CleanTalk to provide anti-spam services. You can read more about it below. If you are concerned with their processing of your data, I urge you not to leave comments.
Now…about what I collect (that you give me):
The house that Goldie walked in to was pretty impressive for being hidden in the woods. The walls were gingerbread, sugar glass windows, and cushions made of marshmallow. On the table she found a letter addressed to “The Witch.” In fairy tales, letters are usually written on scraps of paper, possibly homemade, often written in blood. When I want to send you a letter, I use this new fangled thing called the internet and email. To send out newsletters, all the subscribers’ data is stored in my website, and does not transfer any data to any services. I collect IP addresses at the moment of subscription and whenever a user performs an action on newsletters, if tracking is active. IP addresses are used for various features, from tracking to geo-localization.
When you subscribe, I collect your first name, IP address (the address of your computer), and email address so that I can send you infrequent updates about what is going on in my world. Want to be removed from this list? Click unsubscribe at the bottom of any newsletter or send me an email. My newsletters do send a message back to me when they are opened. This helps me to better design my future content. I view and store the statistics about whether you’ve opened the newsletters or not.
You can check out Newsletter’s GDPR compliancy here.
Since Goldie doesn’t really understand privacy, she opened the witch’s letter. Inside, she found a lovely recipe for cookies from the witch’s granddaughter, only the recipe included raisins. Raisins! Goldie was more of a chocolate chip kind of girl. Looking around, she found a quill made of licorice and a pot of what appeared to be berry juice. Quickly, Goldie scrawled a comment proclaiming chocolate superior. Personally, I love it when people comment. I love a good discussion, too! So to allow for discussion, you have the opportunity to post comments on this website. The information collected includes your name, email address, IP address, and your comments. If you ever wish to have your comments removed, send me an email and I’ll remove them.
While I love comments, I don’t like spam (no, not Spam…fairytales don’t generally include Spam, it’s more of a Hawaiian treat…I’m talking about unsolicited junk comments sent by bots to thousands of people). To protect my site from spam, your information is compared with a list of known spam senders by CleanTalk. The information CleanTalk collects includes the commenter’s IP address, user agent, referrer, and Site URL (along with other information directly provided by the commenter such as their name, username, email address…oh, and the comment itself, of course). CleanTalk doesn’t do anything with the data and they purge it in a few days…however, I keep the data (um, it’s your comments) and store it in my database.
Website Activity Tracking
Clearly, no one keeps track of Goldie, she’s off running rampant in the forest, breaking into houses and defacing recipes. Personally, I’m keeping track of one homeschooled kid, a military husband, 4 cats, 9 chickens and a dog who believes he’s human, to say nothing about writing and creating art. It can take a bit of fairytale wishful thinking on my part. That’s why my hosting company provides me with basic data on those who access my site. The data stored in this manner is not traceable back to any individual and is deliberately generalized. It provides me with information related to the country of origin of site visitors, what browser they are using, and how long they stayed on the site. If you want to read about what I use, here is a good article.
In addition, Google and other search engines track website visitors. This is something that happens whenever you use the internet. If you do not want to be tracked, please consider using a private browser window. The information that these search engines store is not traceable to one individual and so is very generic in nature. I do not store this information, however I do occasionally look at it so that I can tell what people are searching for when they come to my site. This helps me provide more relevant content.
One of the primary purposes of cookies is to provide a convenience feature to save you time. For example, the cookie notice on this site will place a cookie on your computer when you accept it. Then it won’t ask you if you approve of cookies again for a month. This simplifies the process of delivering relevant content, eases site navigation, and so on. When you return to the Web site, the information you previously provided can be retrieved, so you can easily use the site’s features that you customized.
Web beacons, also known as clear gif technology, or action tags, may be used to assist in delivering the cookie. This technology is a tool used to compile aggregated statistics about web site usage, such as how many visitors clicked on key elements (such as links or graphics) on a Web page, blog or a newsletter. No private or personal information is transferred in this way.
You have the ability to accept or decline cookies. Many Web browsers automatically accept cookies, but you can modify your browser settings to decline cookies if you prefer. If you choose to decline cookies, you may not be able to fully experience the interactive features of this or other Web sites you visit.
Changes to this Statement
If there’s one guarantee, it’s that change happens. If you know fairy tales, it means Goldie is probably going to get eaten by the witch, or a wolf may break in and save her and then they’ll all bake cookies and share them with a few bears. I too may occasionally update this privacy statement. When I do, I will also revise the “last updated” date at the top of the privacy statement. I encourage you to periodically review this privacy statement to stay informed about how I am helping to protect the personal information I collect. Your continued use of the service constitutes your agreement to this privacy statement and any updates.
A Note to International Users
While my characters may be born on another continent, and I swear I should have been, I was born in and live in the US, and that’s where this site is hosted. If you are accessing the Site from outside the United States, by providing your information to the Site, you are consenting to the transfer of your information to the United States for processing and maintenance in accordance with this Privacy Notice. You are also consenting to the application of United States law in all matters concerning the Site.
Site Content Owner
All of the content on this site, www.loscotoff.com, is owned by Anna Loscotoff, Author.