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privacy policy




Because we gather certain types of information about our users, we feel you should fully understand the terms and conditions surrounding the capture and use of that information.  This privacy statement discloses what information we gather and how we use it. 


1. Information Tracked

We gather two types of information about users:

Information that users provide through optional, voluntary submissions.  These are voluntary submissions to receive our electronic newsletters, to participate in our forums, to e-mail a friend, and to participate in polls and surveys.

We gather aggregated tracking information derived mainly by tallying page views throughout our Site.  This information allows us to better tailor our content to readers' needs.

2. Optional Voluntary Information

We offer the following free services, which require some type of voluntary submission of personally identifiable information by users:

Forums

Users of the Site's forums must register separately for these services, free of charge, in order to post messages, although they needn't register to visit the site.  During registration the user is required to supply a user name, password, and e-mail address.

Surveys and Polls

We may offer interactive surveys and polls to users so they can easily share their opinions with other users and see what our audience thinks about various topics.  Opinions or other responses to polls are aggregated and are not identifiable to any particular user.  We may use a system to "tag" users after they have voted, so they can vote only once on a particular question.  This tag is not correlated with information about individual users.

Electronic Newsletters

We will offer a free electronic newsletter to users.  We gather the e-mail addresses of users who voluntarily subscribe.  Users may remove themselves from this mailing list by following the link provided in every newsletter that points users to a subscription management page.

"E-mail This To a Friend" Service and E-cards

Our site users can choose to electronically forward a link, page, or documents to someone else by clicking "e-mail this to a friend" or using the e-card service.  The user must provide their e-mail address, as well as that of the recipient.  This information is used only in the case of transmission errors and, of course, to let the recipient know who sent the e-mail.  The information is not used for any other purpose.

5. Children

Consistent with the Federal Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA), we will never knowingly request personally identifiable information from anyone under the age of 13 without requesting parental consent. 

6. Usage tracking

We track user traffic patterns.  We do not, however, correlate this information with data about individual users.  We break down overall usage statistics according to a user's domain name, browser type, and MIME type by reading this information from the browser string (information contained in every user's browser).  We sometimes track and catalog the search terms that users enter in our search function, but this tracking is never associated with individual users.  We use tracking information to determine which areas of our Site users like and don't like based on traffic to those areas.  We do not track what individual users read, but rather how well each page performs overall.  This helps us continue to build a better service for you. 

7. Cookies

We may place a text file called a "cookie" in the browser files of your computer.  The cookie itself does not contain personally identifiable information although it will enable us to relate your use of this Site to information that you have specifically and knowingly provided.  But the only personal information a cookie can contain is information you supply yourself.  A cookie cannot read data off your hard disk or read cookie files created by other sites.  We use cookies to track user traffic patterns, as described above. 

You can refuse cookies by turning them off in your browser.  If you've set your browser to warn you before accepting cookies, you will receive the warning message with each cookie.  You do not need to have cookies turned on to use this Site.  You do, however, need cookies to participate actively in message boards, forums, polls, surveys, and other services. 

8. Use of Information

We use any information voluntarily given by our users to enhance their experience on our Site, whether to provide interactive or personalized elements on the Site or to better prepare future content based on the interests of our users. 

As stated above, we use information that users voluntarily provide in order to send out electronic newsletters and to enable users to participate in polls, surveys, message boards, and forums.  We send out newsletters to subscribers on a regular schedule (depending on the newsletter), and occasionally send out special editions when we think subscribers might be particularly interested in something we are doing.  We never share newsletter mailing lists with any third parties, including advertisers, sponsors or partners. 

We use tracking information to determine which areas of our Site users like and don't like based on traffic to those areas.  We do not, however, track what individual users read but rather how well each page performs overall.  This helps us continue to build a better service for you.  We track search terms entered in the search function as one of many measures of what interests our users.  But we don't track which terms a particular user enters. 

9. Sharing of the Information

We will not share information about individual users with any third party, except to comply with applicable law or valid legal process or to protect the personal safety of our users or the public. 

10. Opt-Out Policy

We give users options wherever necessary and practical.  Such choices include opting not to register to receive our electronic newsletters and opting not to participate in certain interactive areas, which completely alleviates the need to gather any personally identifiable information from our users. 

11. Advertising

We use third-party advertising companies to serve ads when you visit our Site.  These companies may use information (not including your name, address email address or telephone number) about your visits to this and other web sites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you.  If you would like more information about this practice and to know your choices about not having this information used by these companies, you can visit networkadvertising•org.

12. Your Consent

By using this Site, you consent to the collection and use of this information by us.

13. Policy Revisions

We reserve the right to modify this policy at any time.  Any changes to the policy will be posted on this page so that you are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances we disclose it.  Users are encouraged to check the page regularly as they will be bound by the changes once posted on the Site.