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Privacy policy

This policy was last updated on July 29, 2014.

This policy describes the privacy practices of The Boston Globe (a subsidiary of Boston Globe Media Partners, LLC) (the “Boston Globe,” “our,” or “we”). It explains how we collect, use, and store information we collect about our readers. This policy covers our privacy practices in connection with The Boston Globe newspaper and the Boston Globe’s digital properties (including Boston.com, BostonGlobe.com, betaboston.com, bdcwire.com, and cruxnow.com), and mobile applications (including Boston Globe ePaper and Boston.com News).

In this privacy policy, you will find the answers to the following questions:

1. What information do we gather about you?

2. How do we gather information?

3. What do we do with the information we gather?

4. With whom do we share the information we gather?

5. How do you change, update, or delete your personal information?

6. What else should you know about the Boston Globe’s privacy practices?

7. How can you find out about changes to this privacy policy?

8. Who should you contact if you have questions?

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1. WHAT INFORMATION DO WE GATHER ABOUT YOU?

The information we gather falls into two categories:

Personal information is information that identifies you. We collect this information only when you choose to provide it to us. For example, we collect personal information when you subscribe to The Boston Globe or email newsletters, place an order, complete a survey, register for one of our websites, or sign in to a website or mobile application through a third party tool such as Facebook Connect. These services will authenticate your identity and provide you the option to share certain personal information with us such as your name and email address to pre-populate our sign up form. Services like Facebook Connect give you the option to post information about your activities on this website to your profile page to share with others within your network.

Non-personal information is information that our technology collects in aggregate, without identifying you. Non-personal information includes your Internet connection, the device you use to access our digital properties, and tracking data relating to your use of our digital properties.

We gather the following types of information:

Contact & Demographic Information: When you subscribe to The Boston Globe or register on a Boston Globe website or application, you will need to provide us with personal information such as your name, address, and email. You may also need to provide some basic demographic information, such as your postal code, birth year, and gender. For registration for promotions, special events, and consumer panels or surveys, we sometimes require additional information, such as your household income, professional industry, and job title.

Billing Information: In order to subscribe, post a classified advertisement, or make a purchase, you must provide your credit card number or other billing information.

Location Information: If you use our mobile applications, you may choose to provide us with access to your specific geolocation information so that we can deliver customized content to you based on your current location.

Public Information: You may create a public profile with us to comment on articles or share content on our forums or discussion groups (“Public Profile”). You can learn about customizing, editing, deleting, and using your public profile here. Please be careful when posting personal information, as this information may be read, collected, and used by others. Third party companies offer services through which you can share information about your activities on our digital properties.

Usage Information: We may log certain non-personal information about your use of the Boston Globe digital properties. In addition, if you contact the Boston Globe, we may log information about the means through which you contacted us and our interaction with you.

Device Information: We may collect non-personal information about the computer, mobile device, or other device you use to access the Boston Globe digital properties. This information may include your IP address, basic geolocation information, unique device identifiers, browser type, browser language, and other transactional information.

Third Party Information: Our sharing tools are an easy way for users of the Boston Globe digital properties to send links to articles, photos and other content. The e-mail address(es) that you supply will only be used to send the requested content. We do not store this information.

Contests, Sweepstakes, and Special Offers: On occasion, we collect personal information from users or subscribers in connection with optional sweepstakes, contests, or special offers. We will not share this information with a third party unless we notify you otherwise at the time of collection. If you do not want us to share any information we collect in connection with such a promotion, you may decline to participate.

Online Customer Panels: We occasionally offer users the opportunity to participate in online research panels. Participants agree to respond to periodic surveys about their usage of Boston Globe products, their household/personal characteristics and their purchase behavior. Participants are contacted primarily via email, but may also occasionally be contacted by telephone or postal mail (if participants provide that information). All survey data is used in aggregate form only, and no personal information is made public or shared with third-parties. We require that participants provide their email address only; name, home address and telephone number are optional.

2. HOW DO WE GATHER INFORMATION?

You voluntarily provide information to us. You may choose to provide us with contact, demographic, billing, or other personal information to order Boston Globe products or take advantage of our services. For example, you may enable location-based mobile features to provide us with access to your location information so that we can deliver customized content through Boston Globe mobile applications. (Your location information will be stored on your mobile device, unless you elect to have it saved to your search history and stored on Boston Globe servers.) If you contact the Boston Globe, we may collect information about our interaction with you.

We use technology to gather non-personal information. We may use cookies, web beacons, clear gifs, and other technologies to log non-personal information about your use of Boston Globe digital properties. You will not be able to access certain areas of Boston Globe websites if your computer does not accept cookies from us. For more information about our use of cookies, see Frequently Asked Questions about Cookies.

Log files. As is true of most websites, we gather certain information automatically and store it in log files. This information may include internet protocol (IP) addresses, browser type, internet service provider (ISP), referring/exit pages, operating system, date/time stamp, and/or clickstream data.

We allow third parties to gather information. Some of the services and advertisements on Boston Globe digital properties are operated by third party companies, including service providers, analytics providers, and marketing partners, which may track certain non-personal information about our website users through cookies, web beacons, or other methods. These third-parties are gathering this information for the purpose of understanding how users are using our sites, and making improvements to our site.

- For example, social media features, such as the Facebook “like” button, are operated by third parties. These features may collect your IP address, which page you are visiting on our sites, and may set a cookie to enable the features to function properly. Actions taken through Facebook or other third party services are governed by the privacy policies of the third parties.

- A third party may also collect information about you when you interact with us via your mobile phone. For instance, your wireless carrier enables text messaging and other services, and collects data about your mobile phone usage.

- Some sections of our websites are operated by third parties. For example, if you are searching for a job, you will be redirected to monster.com, which is framed within the boston.com website.

Third parties collect, use, and store information according to their own privacy policies. We do not have control over third party privacy practices. You may contact a third party directly to opt-out of future messages from them. Please click here to see a list of third parties that may use cookies to serve advertising on our digital properties. For example, Google is one of the companies that serves advertisements on Boston Globe digital properties. It uses the DART cookie and other technologies to serve ads based on your visit to Boston Globe digital properties and other websites. You may opt out of the use of the DART cookie by visiting the Google ad and content network privacy policy.

If you would like more information about advertisers’ use of cookies, and about your option not to accept these cookies, please click here. If you would like to opt-out of having interest-based information collected during your visits to this or other sites, click here. Your access to Boston Globe digital properties should not be affected if you do not accept cookies served by third parties.

3. WHAT DO WE DO WITH THE INFORMATION WE GATHER?

Our approach to sharing information with third parties. We do not sell, license, rent, or swap your personal information without your permission, except as set out in this policy or as required by law. We do share non-personal information with third parties.

Specific ways in which we use personal information. We use personal information for the following purposes:

- To provide the products and services you request and communicate with you about those products and services.

- To provide you with updates about major changes to Boston Globe properties or to discuss your account or renew your subscription.

- To email you information about products and services that may be of interest to you. These product and services may be provided by the Boston Globe, or our advertisers, partners, or other third parties. You may opt-out at any time from any primarily commercial messages and user surveys by following the opt-out instructions in the email.

- To improve our services and personalize your experience with us.

- To disclose your opt-out information to third parties so they can suppress your name from future solicitations.

We will not use your phone number to initiate a call or text message exchange with you without your express prior consent.

Specific ways in which we use non-personal information. We use non-personal information for the following purposes:

- To analyze statistical, demographic, and marketing information for product development purposes and to understand usage and traffic trends and improve our relationship with you.

- To inform advertisers about the nature of our subscriber base and the number of unique visitors that have viewed a particular ad or visited a particular webpage. We may publish summary information regarding our online visitors for promotional purposes and as a representative audience for advertisers.

- To allow advertisers to customize content. This means users see advertising that is most likely to interest them, and advertisers display their messages to people who are most likely to be receptive, improving both the viewer’s experience and the effectiveness of the ads. For example, in the course of serving certain advertisements, some advertisers may place or recognize a unique cookie on your browser in order to collect information about your visits to our websites and other websites. This information could be used to show you ads based on your interests on other websites.

- To customize your experience on our digital properties, so that you do not see the same ad repeatedly and to provide you with an enhanced experienced based on the type of device you are using.

- To gauge the effectiveness of our communications and marketing campaigns.

4. WITH WHOM DO WE SHARE THE INFORMATION WE GATHER?

Boston Globe entities. Your personal information will be shared among Boston Globe entities. This allows you to use the same login and password on each Boston Globe digital property.

Service Providers. We contract with service providers to help us with credit card and bill processing, shipping, email distribution, list processing, analytics and promotions management, and ad serving. We provide service providers only with the information they need to perform their services. We prohibit them from sharing, reselling, or using our data for their own marketing purposes.

- For example, if you are a print subscriber or registered member of The Boston Globe, we may share your email address with a service provider that sends emails on our behalf. That service provider may not share your email address or personal information with other companies, and may only send you emails on behalf of the Boston Globe.

- Another example is that we may also engage service providers to track and analyze information about readers’ use of our websites. These service providers may only use this information to track the traffic, usability, performance, and effectiveness of our websites and they may only disclose their findings to the Boston Globe.

Advertisers. We share non-personal information with our advertisers. For example, we may share statistical, demographic and marketing analyses of readers and their browsing and purchasing patterns to inform advertisers about the nature of our reader base. We will not share personal information with advertisers without your permission.

Partners. We may buy, sell to, or merge or partner with another company. We may share personal and non-personal information with other companies in the course of such transactions.

Others, as required. We may disclose personal and non-personal information if we have a good faith belief that disclosure is necessary to comply with the law or with legal process, such as to comply with a subpoena, protect and defend our rights and property, to protect against misuse or unauthorized use of our websites, or to protect the personal safety or property of our users or the public.

- For example, we may release personal information to comply with a court order or subpoena.

- If you provide false information or attempt to pose as someone else, we may release personal information as part of any investigation into your actions.

5. HOW DO YOU CHANGE, UPDATE, OR DELETE YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION?

Changes to Personal Information: You may review and update your membership or account information and access your transactions history in our Member Center, a centralized area where you can manage your relationship with the Boston Globe. At the Member Center, you can update and correct your personal information, subscribe to and unsubscribe from email newsletters, and manage your delivery options.

Opting Out: If you wish to discontinue receiving any specific email sent by our marketing partners or us, simply follow the unsubscribe options at the bottom of the email. If you wish to opt out of receiving any direct mail or telephone solicitations from the Boston Globe, you may notify us by calling 617-929-2233 or emailing csadvocate@globe.com.

Data Retention: We will retain your information for as long as we provide you with services. We will also retain and use your information as necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our agreements. If you wish to cancel your account or request that we no longer use your information to provide you services, contact support@bostonglobe.com.

6. WHAT ELSE SHOULD YOU KNOW ABOUT BOSTON GLOBE’S PRIVACY PRACTICES?

TRUSTe online privacy certification

We are certified by TRUSTe. We have received TRUSTe’s Privacy Seal signifying that this privacy statement and our practices have been reviewed for compliance with the TRUSTe program viewable on the validation page available by clicking the TRUSTe seal. The TRUSTe certification only covers information collected on www.boston.com, www.bostonglobe.com and www.bostonglobe.com/services. If you have questions or complaints regarding our privacy policy or practices, please contact us at feedback@boston.com. If you are not satisfied with our response you can contact TRUSTe here. The TRUSTe program covers only information that is collected through the aforementioned websites, and does not cover information that may be collected through software downloaded from this site or through our mobile applications.

Data Security. We use commercially reasonable physical, technical, and managerial controls to protect personal information from our readers. We cannot, however, guarantee that the information will remain permanently secure. It’s possible that technical problems could cause your information to be lost, or that the information could be stolen from our databases. We are not responsible for any such loss, theft, or other security breach.

Children’s Online Privacy Protection. In accordance with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, the Boston Globe does not knowingly collect or store any personal information, even in aggregate, about children under the age of 13. If you are under 13, please do not provide us with your name, email address, phone number, or other personally identifying information.

California Privacy Rights.

If you are a California resident, you have the right, under California Civil Code Section 1798.83, to request and obtain from us, once a year and free of charge, a list of the third parties to whom we have disclosed personal information for their direct marketing purposes in the prior calendar year. Please email requests for such information to feedback@boston.com.

7. HOW CAN YOU FIND OUT ABOUT CHANGES TO THIS POLICY?

We may make changes to this Privacy Policy. If we do so, we will post the changes to this webpage. If any of those changes are significant and deal with our use of personal information, we will post those changes to this webpage at least 30 days before they take effect.

8. WHO SHOULD YOU CONTACT IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS?

General contact information. If you have any questions or comments regarding our information or security practices, you may contact us using the information below:

Email: feedback@boston.com or support@bostonglobe.com.

Phone: 617-929-7900 (between 9:00am and 5:30pm EST)

Fax: 617-929-7975, Attention Privacy Manager

Mail: 135 Morrissey Blvd., Boston, MA 02125, Attention Privacy Manager

Unsubscribe Requests. If you would like to contact us about unsubscribing from our email lists, please email feedback@boston.com and provide all of your email addresses that could appear on our email lists, as well as the name of the newsletter from which you would like to unsubscribe.

Updates to Personal Information. If you would like to update the personal information that we have about you, or if you no longer desire our services, you can update your preferences at the Member Center.

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