IVN News

Privacy Policy

IVN Privacy Policy

Last Updated: February 19, 2016

IVN, a publication of the Independent Voter Project (IVP) and the Foundation for Independent Voter Education (FIVE), which owns and operates the website http://IVN.us (the “Site”), takes your privacy seriously. This privacy policy is intended to inform you about the information that is collected from you when you visit the Site; how this information may be used and disclosed; how you can control the use and disclosure of this information; and how this information is protected. If you have any questions about this privacy policy, please contact our privacy team at [email protected].

Scope

This privacy policy applies only to the Site. This policy does not apply to information collected through any other website or to the practices of companies that IVN.us does not control. Please note that the Site may contain links to other websites. For example, if you click on an advertisement on the Site and link to another website, then this privacy policy will not apply to any information collected on that website. We are not responsible for the privacy practices of other websites, and we recommend that you read the privacy policies of each website that you visit.

What information the Site collects

Information you provide directly to us: 

You are not required to provide information directly to us in order to view the Site. However, when you use certain Site functions, such as when you register for certain services, access certain content or features, or directly contact the Site, we may ask you to provide information, including:

  • contact information, such as name, email address, postal address, phone number, and mobile number
  • username and password
  • information posted in community discussions and other interactive online features
  • search queries conducted on the Site and
  • correspondence you send to us

Information automatically collected when you visit and interact with the Site:

When you visit and interact with the Site, certain information may be collected automatically, including:

  • your computer’s Internet Protocol (IP) address
  • your browser type and operating system
  • the web pages you were visiting immediately before and after you came to the Site
  • activities within community discussions
  • web pages and advertisements that you view, and links that you click on, within the Site
  • your bandwidth speed and information about the software programs that are installed on your computer
  • aggregated data about email click-through rates and user video viewing
  • standard server log information and
  • information collected through HTML cookies, Flash cookies, web beacons, and similar technologies. For more information, please see our discussion of cookies and other technologies.

Information we collect from other sources:

We may access information about you from third-party sources and platforms (such as social networking sites, databases, online marketing firms, and ad targeting firms), including:

  • if you access third-party social networking services (such as Facebook Connect or Twitter) through the Site, your username and connection lists for those services;
  • demographic data, such as age range, gender, and interests;
  • advertisement interaction and viewing data, such as ad click-through rates and information about how many times you viewed a particular ad; and
  • unique identifiers, including mobile device identification numbers, that can identify the physical location of such devices in accordance with applicable law.

Please note that the Site may combine the information that we collect with information we obtain from third-party sources.

How we use the information that we collect

Email Communications:

We may use the information that we collect to send you e-mail communications, such as editorial updates, information about your account or changes to the Site, and promotional messages about our own or our marketing partners’ products and services. If you signed up for one of our email newsletters, we also will send you the newsletter that you requested.

Mobile Communications:

With your consent, we may use your mobile number to send you promotions, notifications, or other services.

Advertising:

We display advertisements on the Site, many of which are targeted based on information about you. For example, using information collected through cookies, web beacons, and other sources, we may use demographic data or information about your online activities or interests to display targeted advertising that may be relevant to your preferences. Through this process, advertisers reach Site visitors who are most interested in their products, and you see advertising for products or services in which you may be interested. For more information on how cookies and other technologies work, please see our discussion of cookies and other technologies.

Third-party advertisers and advertising platforms also may serve targeted ads on the Site. Please remember that the information practices of third-party advertisers or platforms collecting data on our site are not covered by this privacy policy.

User Accounts:

To provide you with an open, but also civil, discussion forum, we track user involvement in our community discussions. For more information on this process, please see our Etiquette about comment moderation guidelines.

Request Fulfillment:

We may use the information that we collect to fulfill your requests for products, services, and information. For example, we may use your contact information to respond to your customer service requests or to enable you to participate in features on the Site such as surveys, polls, sweepstakes, and message boards. We may also provide you with information or services that we think will be of interest to you, such as sending you information to keep you informed about various campaigns, candidates, issues, events, resources, promotions, or contests.

Statistical Analysis:

In order to learn more about how our Site is used, we aggregate and analyze the data that we collect. We may use this information, for example, to monitor and analyze use of the Site, to increase our Site’s functionality, and to better tailor our content and design to suit our visitors’ needs. We may also use the information we collect to personalize and improve the Site and our users’ experiences on the Site, such as providing ads, content, or features that match your profiles or interests, and to increase the Site’s functionality and user friendliness.

Enforcement:

We may use the information that we collect to prevent illegal activities, to enforce the Site’s Terms and Conditions, and to otherwise protect our rights and the rights of our users.

In addition to the uses identified above, we may use the information that we collect for any other purposes disclosed to you at the time we collect the information or pursuant to your consent.

Information sharing:

It is our policy not to share the information we collect from you through our Site with third parties, except as described in this Policy or as otherwise disclosed on the Site. For example, we may share information we collect as follows:

  • We may share information we collect with vendors, consultants, and other service providers or volunteers who are engaged by or working with us and who need access to such information to carry out their work with us.
  • We may share aggregated information or information that does not directly identify you with third parties to help us develop content, services, and advertising that we hope you will find of interest.
  • We may employ third parties to perform Site-related services, including database management, maintenance services, analytics, marketing, data processing, and email and text message distribution.
  • If you choose to engage in public activities on the site, such as posting comments on community message boards, any information you submit can be read, collected, or used by others. Please exercise caution when deciding to disclose any personal information in public activities or submissions.
  • We may share information we collect with candidates, organizations, groups, or causes that we believe have similar political viewpoints, principles, or objectives.
  • We may share information about you in connection with, or during negotiations of, any merger, reorganization, acquisition, asset sale, financing or lending transaction, or in any other situation where personal information may be disclosed or transferred as one of the assets of IVP.
  • We may use the information we collect to help connect you with other supporters, and to solicit volunteers, donations, and support for candidates, issues, and organizations that we support.
  • We may share information about you to investigate, prevent, or take action regarding illegal activities, suspected fraud, situations involving potential threats to the physical safety or other rights and interests of any person, violations of the Site’s Terms and Conditions, or as otherwise required by law.
  • We may share information about you to respond to subpoenas, search warrants, judicial proceedings, court orders, legal process, or other law enforcement measures, to establish or exercise our legal rights, or to defend against legal claims.
  • We may share information about you to enforce or apply this Policy, our Terms of Use, or our other policies and agreements.
  • In addition to the scenarios identified above, we may share information about you for any other purposes disclosed to you at the time we collect the information or pursuant to your consent, including if we notify you on the Site that the information you provide will be shared in a particular manner and you provide such information.

Nothing herein restricts the sharing of aggregated or anonymized information, which may be shared with third parties without your consent.

Please note that third parties may independently collect data about you, including your IP address and information about the websites you visit and the links you click, through cookies, clicks on links, or other means when you visit or view ads on the Site.

Third-party services:

To customize your experience on the Site and to simplify the Site’s registration process, we may provide you with the opportunity to access or interact with third-party services, such as Facebook and Twitter. When you connect to the Site through these third-party services, we may share information about you with these third-party service providers and they may share data about you with us.

When you allow us to access your data through a third-party service, we may use this data for several purposes, including:

  • Creating relationships automatically within our system. For example, if you connect to us via a service with a public friend list, like Twitter, we may check to see if any people you follow on Twitter are also Site members. If we find a match, we will replicate your Twitter relationship with those members, setting them to be fans, followers, or friends on our Site.
  • Suggesting relationships. For example, if you connect via a service that has a private contact list (like Google and Yahoo!), we check for people in your contacts who are Site members and suggest that you become a fan of these users.
  • Populating a list of potential friends to whom you can send emails. When users share content with their friends using, for example, the forward-to-a-friend feature on the Site, we may use friend lists from third-party services to create a list of contacts to whom you may choose to send the email message.
  • Populating a list of potential friends to whom you can send service-specific messages. For example, we may use friend lists from a third-party service to create a list of contacts to whom you may choose to send an invitation to view an interactive slideshow.
  • To enhance and personalize your experience on the Site. When you are connected via a third-party service, we may access certain account information, such as your profile picture, what stories are popular in your network, and what your friends are saying about certain articles or blog posts, in order to enhance and personalize your experience on the Site.

In addition, if you connect to a Facebook account, your experience on the Site may be personalized. For example, you may automatically see what stories are popular in your network, and what your friends are saying about particular stories.

We are not responsible for the actions of any service providers or other third parties, nor are we responsible for any additional information you provide directly to third parties and we encourage you to become familiar with their privacy practices before disclosing information directly to any such parties.

Other Purpose

We may use the information we collect for any other purpose for which the information was collected.

We may store and process personal information in the United States and in other countries.

Your choices

Deactivating your account

You can deactivate your account at any time by visiting the preferences page for your profile. When you deactivate your account, your user profile will be disabled, but your public comments will remain on the site. The Site has no responsibility to take down, remove, or edit any of your public activities or any submissions that are a result of your public activities. For more information, please review our Terms and Conditions.

Opt Out

You may “opt out” of receiving text messages, email updates and newsletters by following the instructions in those text messages and emails. Please note that we may still send you other types of emails, such as emails about your use of our Site, or use information as otherwise described in this Policy, even if you opt out of receiving email updates and newsletters. Changes to information in your account does not affect information provided to others as set forth in this policy, including in connection with petitions or donations or that are shared with like-minded candidates, organizations, groups or causes.

Cookies and other technologies

When you use the Sites, some information is also automatically collected, such as your Internet Protocol (IP) address, your operating system, the browser type, the address of a referring web site, and your activity on our Sites. We treat this information as the other information we collect if we combine it with or link it to any of the identifying information mentioned above. Otherwise, it is used in the aggregate only.

We may also automatically collect certain information through the use of “cookies” or web beacons. Cookies are small data files stored on your hard drive at the request of a website. Among other things, cookies help us improve our Sites and your experience.  We may also use cookies and other technologies to provide you with personalized online display advertising tailored to your interests. If we link cookies to any personally identifying information, we will treat this information as the other information we collect. If you wish to block, erase, or be warned of cookies, please refer to your browser manufacturer to learn about these functions. However, if you choose to remove or reject cookies, this could affect certain features on our Sites. Web beacons are small, invisible graphic images that may be used on the Sites or in emails relating to the Sites to collect certain information and monitor user activity on the Sites.

We may allow others to serve advertisements on our behalf across the Internet and to provide analytics services.  These entities may use cookies, web beacons and other technologies to collect information about your use of the Services and other websites, including your IP address, web browser, pages viewed, time spent on pages, links clicked and conversion information.  This information may be used by the Site and others to, among other things, analyze and track data, determine the popularity of certain content, deliver advertising and content targeted to your interests on our Services and other websites and better understand your online activity.  For more information about Internet-based ads, or to opt out of having your web browsing information used for behavioral advertising purposes, please visit www.networkadvertising.org/managing/opt_out.asp or www.aboutads.info/choices.

Online petitions

When you sign an online petition, you understand that such petition is public information and that we may make the petition, and your name, city, state, any comments, and other information you provided in connection therewith publicly available. In addition, we may provide such petitions or compilations thereof, including your comments, name, city, and state to national, state or local leaders, or to the press.

Interactive Features

You understand that when you use the Site, information you: post in your profile, blogs, forums and other interactive areas of the Site, as well as any information you share with individuals through the Site or share through social network sites, will be available to other users and, in some cases, may be publicly available. In addition, when you sign up and create an account, certain information regarding actions you take through the Site, may available to other users and, in some cases, may be publicly available. We recommend you be cautious about giving out personal information to others or sharing personal information in public or private online forums. We are not responsible for the actions of any third parties with whom you share personal information. In some cases, there may be privacy setting available regarding the information available to others, and we suggest you take time to familiarize yourself with these options and utilize these settings.

Access

If you choose to share contact information with us, you may update or amend this information by contacting us at [email protected].

Confidentiality and security

We have adopted commercially reasonable technical, physical, and administrative procedures to help protect information about you from loss, misuse, and alteration.

Please be aware, however, that despite our efforts, no security measures are perfect or impenetrable and no method of data transmission that can be guaranteed against any interception or other type of misuse. We want you to feel confident using the Site, but we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information you transmit to us.

To protect the confidentiality of personal information, you must keep your password confidential and not disclose it to any other person. You are responsible for all uses of our Site by any person using your password, or your device.

Visitors from outside the United States

The Site’s offices are located in the United States. If you visit the site from another country, please be aware that information you provide to us or that we obtain as a result of your use of the Site may be processed in and transferred to the United States and will be subject to U.S. law.

Children under 13

We do not knowingly collect personal information from children under 13. If we learn that we have collected any personal information from a child under the age of 13 without verifiable parental consent, we will delete that information from our database as quickly as possible. If you believe that we may have collected information from a child under 13, please contact us at [email protected].

Changes to the privacy policy

We may update this privacy policy at any time to reflect changes in our practices and service offerings. If we modify this privacy policy, we will update the “Effective Date.” We will notify you of any material changes in the way we treat the information we collect by placing a prominent notice on our site or sending a notice to the primary email address specified in your account.

Questions and suggestions

If you have questions about this privacy policy, please contact our privacy team at [email protected].