What personal data is collected and why
When you leave a comment the data shown in the comments form (e.g. name, email, website and comment) is stored. Additionally, your IP address and browser user agent string may be stored to help spam detection, and data about your comment may be sent to an automated spam detection service such as Akismet.
An anonymised string created from your email address (also called a hash) may be provided to the Gravatar service to check if you use it. If you are registered with Gravatar then the profile picture linked to your email address may be displayed beside your comments and elsewhere on the site in the context of your comment.
Three broad categories of cookies are stored by this site:
- Necessary cookies
- Enhanced comment cookies
- Analytics cookies
Further information on each of these is given below.
Some cookies are required for core functionality, anti-spam and security reasons. For example, whenever you comment a cookie is temporarily set while the site checks whether your comment requires moderation, in case it is suspected to be spam or if moderation is turned on for a specific post. If your comment does require moderation then that cookie will stay in your browser until your comment has been approved. It is not possible to opt out of these cookies, but they are automatically removed when they are no longer required.
Enhanced comment cookies
If you leave a comment on the site you may select a “save details” checkbox to opt in to storing your name, email address and website in cookies in your browser. This is for your convenience so that you do not have to fill in your details again when leaving future comments. These cookies may also be used to recognise you when you post follow-up comments, to reduce the chance of your comment being marked as spam or held for moderation.
The cookies last for one year, but if you wish to opt out sooner simply uncheck the checkbox and this will delete the cookies.
You may also opt in to subscribing to comments on any given post. If you do so, your email address is saved in a cookie in your browser to allow this functionality to work. These cookies allows the software to recognise you when you return, detect whether you have already subscribed to comments on a given post, and provide the option of you managing (deleting or suspending) your subscriptions.
If you wish to opt out at a later date you may clear your subscriptions from the management page then delete your cookies via your browser settings.
Note that in order to see either of these options (option to save your details or option to subscribe to followup comments) you must have first accepted comment cookies in the cookie preferences popup.
You may also opt in to analytics cookies. If you opt in, information on your visits to the site may be sent to Google Analytics to understand how people use the site. This provides me with statistical analyses at an aggregate level – for example, which posts are most popular, how many users are currently active on the site, and which search terms or social networks people used to reach the site. Your data (including IP address) is anonymised so I have no way of knowing who you are.
If you opt in then later decide to opt out, you can change your cookie preferences. Opting out will stop Google Analytics running when you next visit the site. You may also wish to clear existing cookies via your browser settings.
Your details will only be used to send you the newsletter, for example to notify you of new posts on the site. Your personal details (name and email address) are not shared with anyone else and you may unsubscribe at any time via the link at the bottom of each email.
When you subscribe to the newsletter your IP address and the time and date you signed up is stored. This is to record proof of signup in line with the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). An ongoing log of emails sent to you is also kept, providing a record of what was sent when.
Emails may employ interaction tracking to understand, for example, how many users opened an email or clicked a link. This lets me learn what is relevant to subscribers. It also means I can identify inactive recipients in order to remove them from the list, such as removing anyone who has not opened a newsletter email for a set period of time or who has not opened the last set number of newsletters, as emails that are regularly ignored are often marked as spam.
Social media interactions
If you interact with The Art of Allyship on social media (e.g. by commenting on a post on the site’s Instagram page, replying to a tweet, or getting in touch on Facebook Messenger through the Contact page) your publicly-available information (such as your name and profile picture) will be visible to me in the same way that it’s visible to everyone else on those sites. I do not collect or store that data. Any interactions with me on social media are governed by those sites’ terms of service and privacy policies.
How long your data is retained for
If you leave a comment on an article then that comment and its metadata (such as your name and email) are retained indefinitely, so that other people can read and interact with your comment. By commenting you agree to grant me a perpetual and irrevocable license to the content of your comment, whether in whole or in part.
If you choose to subscribe to comments via email, your email address and the subscriptions you have chosen are retained until you unsubscribe. You can manage your subscriptions via the link at the bottom of every subscription email or directly via the management page. If you subscribe to a comment but do not click the verification link, the details of that subscription are automatically deleted after 30 days, unless you delete them sooner via the management page.
If you subscribe to the newsletter and verify your subscription, the data listed in the “Newsletter” section above may be retained for the duration of your subscription. If you subscribe to the newsletter but do not then click the verification link sent to you, you will not receive any emails. Unconfirmed and inactive subscribers are entirely removed from the database periodically.
Data collected via Google Analytics is retained indefinitely in an anonymised form to allow me to measure engagement and improve the site and its content.
Right to view your data or request deletion
Once your request is received you may be asked to verify your email address by way of a verification link that will be sent to you. This is to ensure that you do not access or request deletion of someone else’s data. If you would like this request to apply to Google Analytics data, your Google Analytics Client ID will also be required at this stage. The process for extracting this varies by browser and instructions will be emailed to you upon submitting a request. You may have to extract separate client IDs from each browser or device you use.
Once you have completed this process the following will be extracted and shared with you via email within 30 days, and/or deleted if so requested:
- Any comments made against your verified email address, along with the associated name and website.
- Any comment subscription data held against your verified email address, along with the associated posts you subscribe to.
- All data relating to any newsletter subscription against your verified email address, including name and history of emails sent to you.
- Any personal data associated with the Google Analytics Client ID(s) that you provide.
If you request erasure of data it may remain in archived backup files for up to 60 days after being erased from the live system. However these files will not be used for any purpose other than providing redundancy in case of disaster recovery.
In line with my licence to use your comment (see “How long your data is retained for”), when erasing your personal data your comments may be left visible to others but with personal data removed. For example, the comment may be attributed to “Anonymous” with no email address or website, and any personal details in the comment itself edited out.
I reserve the right to edit or delete your comments or any personal data I hold about you at any time, without giving notice or providing reason or justification.