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PRIVACY POLICY

TheCircle.org is an online service that helps you achieve your goals with subject matter related blogs, message boards, mentoring and other resources.  TheCircle.org understands the importance of privacy in this endeavor and maintains an online privacy policy to give our members confidence that their personal information will not be misused.  TheCircle.org considers privacy to be of the utmost importance.

This policy explains how we use the personal information you submit. As we update and expand our services, this policy may change, so please refer back to it periodically. If you use TheCircle.org’s services, you agree to these terms.

Collection of Personal Information

When you register to become a member of the TheCircle.org, we request information about you. We collect personally identifiable information such as names, passwords, email addresses and demographic information such as age, gender and zip code. We also may collect your IP address, browser type, domain name, access times and referring Web site address. This information is collected during registration or in response to specific requests, for example, when signing up for a newsletter or answering a survey.
To become a member of our site, you must be at least 16 years or older. Our policy is that we do not knowingly collect personally identifiable information from persons under 16 years of age. If you are under 16 years of age, you should not register to become a member or provide personally identifiable information to TheCircle.org site. If you are the parent or guardian of a person under the age of 16 who you believe has disclosed personally identifiable information to TheCircle.org, please contact admin@thecircle.org so that we may delete and remove such information from our data storage.

What We Do with Collected Information

We use this information to provide services to you such as connecting your email to our forums so that you can be notified when there is activity in your circle.  We also use this information to communicate with you. We use your email address to send you material related to your membership, as well as messages about special offers, promotional announcements and consumer surveys. A member may, at any time, opt out of receiving such information. We also use collected information to evaluate and administer our service, respond to any problems that may arise and to gauge user trends to determine what part of our services are most popular with users.

Sometimes we will give you the opportunity to opt in to offers from third parties not affiliated with TheCircle.org. If you decide to accept these offers, we will provide, with your consent, your information to the third party. However, you should note that this Privacy Policy does not apply to information users consent to give to third parties not affiliated with TheCircle.org. Any information users give to another party is governed by the rules of that party's privacy policy, which may differ from this Privacy Policy. TheCircle.org is not responsible for information given to other parties. Please review their privacy policies prior to providing any information to third parties.

We may, at times, produce reports for advertisers containing aggregate information about our users such as demographic, age and online usage information. This allows us to work more closely with advertisers to provide content and offers that are most relevant to our users. We will never include any personal information of our users in these reports.

We reserve the right to use or disclose any information without notice or consent as needed to satisfy any law, regulation or legal request; to conduct investigations of consumer complaints or possible breaches of law; to protect the integrity of our site and our property; to protect the safety of our visitors or others; to fulfill your requests; or to cooperate in any legal investigation.

You should be aware that if you voluntarily disclose information online (whether through TheCircle.org or any other service available online), personal or otherwise, that information can be collected and used by others. For example, if you use forums or if you post personal information like your email online, you may receive unsolicited messages from others. TheCircle.org has no control over this use of your personal information.

Viewing and Updating Your Information

You can access the personal information you have provided to TheCircle.org at any time by visiting the My Account section. At your convenience, you can make changes to this information via My Account.

Cookies

As you browse TheCircle.org website, cookies are placed on your computer's hard drive. (Cookies are small pieces of data that are sent to your browser from a Web server and stored on your hard drive.) Cookies allow us to track the areas of the site visited, and help us match your address with your authentication so you don't need to retype the information each time you visit our site.

We also use cookies to gather usage information, such as the number and frequency of visitors to our site and its various pages. Third parties may serve some of these cookies. We analyze this data to determine which parts of our site customers like and which parts need improvement. Automatically logged information is also used to analyze trends and to administer the site.
Cookies may also be placed on your computer by our vendors and affiliates, such as Google. TheCircle.org does not control these third party cookies and you should check the privacy policy of these third parties. You may be able to opt out of the use of cookies at the third party sites.

If you wish, you can adjust your web browser to block the use of cookies. We recommend that you set your browser to accept cookies to take full advantage of our website.

Usage Tracking

An IP address is a unique number that is automatically assigned to your computer whenever you are surfing the Internet so that your computer can be identified by the main computers, known as "Web servers" that "serve up" Web pages.

TheCircle.org and/or its affiliates collect IP addresses for the purposes of system administration, to report aggregated information to our advertisers, and to audit the use of our site. When site users request pages from TheCircle.org and/or its affiliates' sites, our servers log the site users' IP addresses. We do not normally connect IP addresses to anything personally identifiable, which means that a site users' session will be logged, but the site user will remain anonymous to us. The content management system logs error messages and security related events (such as users logging in and out). For anonymous users, this information is linked to IP address only. For users logged in, this information is linked to the users’ accounts, which contain personally identifiable information. Also, any time a user enters information into a form on the site, the IP address of the user is recorded, and if the user is logged in, then the action is linked to that user account. Date, pages accessed, referring URL, and IP address are the information collected through tracking technologies. This information is used in aggregate (i.e. with personally identifiable information stripped out) to provide website utilization statistics to our advertisers and sponsors. The information is also used to provide services, to assist in customer service requests, to resolve errors, and to prevent security incursions against our site. In no case is the tracked personally identifiable information kept on the server for more than seven days, while the derived aggregate information is kept indefinitely. We can and will use IP addresses to identify a site user when we feel it is necessary to enforce compliance with our site terms of use or terms of service or to protect our service, site, site users or others.

Invite-a-Friend

If you choose to use our referral service to invite a friend to our site, we will ask you for your name and email address and your friend’s name and email address. That information is collected to properly route email to the recipient, to identify the sender to recipient, and send confirmation notice to sender. We will automatically send your friend a one-time email inviting him or her to visit the site.  TheCircle.org stores this information for the sole purpose of sending this one-time email and tracking the success of our referral program.
Your friend may contact us at admin@thecircle.org  to request that we remove this information from our database.

Disclosure

As a matter of policy and unless otherwise stated herein, TheCircle.org LLC does not sell your personally identifiable information to other people or non-affiliated companies. However, we reserve the right to use your personally identifiable information to notify you of certain products and services about which you may have interest, and to investigate violations of the terms and provisions of this Policy or the Terms of Use. In addition, TheCircle.org aggregates personally identifiable information from its database and discloses non-personally identifiable elements to third parties for marketing, promotional and other commercial purposes. We reserve the right to sell, rent or disclose your personally identifying information to third parties without further notification.

When we contract with other companies to perform services (such as web hosting, credit card processing, user analysis, survey management), these companies may have access to your personally identifying information. By contractual agreement, these companies must treat your information in strict confidence, and not permit its sale, rental or disclosure to third parties. We will not be liable for any damages that may result from the misuse of your personal information by these companies.

From time to time, we may partner with companies whose products we believe will interest our users. In conjunction with these partners, we may occasionally send promotional announcements to customers. To request that your name be excluded from these mailings with our marketing partners, simply use the contact form on the site and send us a note indicating your preferences.

We also provide analyses of our users in the aggregate to prospective partners, advertisers and other third parties. We do this so that we and our advertisers can understand you better, and so we can keep bringing you first-rate services. We may also disclose, on an anonymous basis, literal statements made by our members.

Security and Access

For transmitting your personal information to us, we use a secure server (SSL), which encrypts all of your personal information. This encryption process ensures that the information you give us is protected against unauthorized access.

You can access My Account from the My Circle page on the site to update and correct your user name, email address, password and other information. Please note that you must be signed in to TheCircle.org to access this information.

We have implemented technology and security features, as well as strict internal guidelines, to safeguard the privacy of your personal information from unauthorized access or improper use. We will continue to enhance our security procedures as improvements become available. While we make every effort to ensure that your information is secure with us, no data transmission over the Internet can be completely guaranteed as secure. As a result, we cannot guarantee the security of any information you transmit to us, and you do so at your own risk.

Forums

TheCircle.org offers members and other users access to forums. Your postings in a forum and other community features are not private and can be read by other users. Information you post to a forum or on other community features will be disclosed and available to all users of that forum. TheCircle.org cannot guarantee the security of such information that you disclose or communicate online in public areas such as forums and you do so at your own risk.

Profile

When a user registers as a member of TheCircle.org, the user must submit certain information including a user name and other information which forms the member’s public profile.  Some information requested in the registration process is not required, such as the submission of a photograph, and is left to the discretion of the member. A member’s public profile information appears in the circles in which the member chooses to participate and, in some cases, may be featured on other pages of TheCircle.org, such as the front page, to draw attention to the member for such things as goal achievement and to promote the site. 

My Circle Page

A member receives upon registration a My Circle page that involves certain features, such as intra-site email, friends section, record of circle participation, progress meter and notes-to-self section.  The My Circle page is a member’s private page and the member controls who may view it.  A member may give other members, such as friends, access to his or her My Circle page.  Members who visit another member’s My Circle page may only view the page and make comments where authorized.  Friends cannot enter the page in any way to add to, change or edit the member’s content. In accordance with the Terms of Use Agreement, TheCircle.org may view a member’s My Circle page for any reason or no reason.  However, as a policy, TheCircle.org will not access a member’s My Circle page unless it has grounds to believe that the Terms of Use Agreement has been violated, the members safety is in jeopardy or for reasons of public safety.

Disclosure of Personal Information in the Event of Merger or Asset Sale

TheCircle.org LLC could merge with or be acquired by another business entity or all or substantially all of their respective assets could be acquired. Should such a combination, acquisition or transaction occur, you should expect that TheCircle.org LLC will share some or all of your personally identifiable information with the acquiring or merged entity in order to continue serving you and others information, updates and offers concerning the websites.

Third Party Links

TheCircle.org does not monitor, control or endorse the information collection or privacy practices of any third parties including, without limitation, any co-branded, partner or affiliated sites which are not owned or operated by TheCircle.org LLC, or other third parties who may provide services through TheCircle.org site. Please be aware that TheCircle.org site may contain links to other websites on the Internet and the services may be provided by such third parties. TheCircle.org LLC assumes no liability or responsibility for the information collection and privacy practices of such third parties. Please consult each website's privacy policy. In addition, TheCircle.org is not responsible for the content or data collection practices of any third party websites, including a third party's use of cookies or other data-collection applications. Even though certain information collected by such third parties might not identify you personally, we strongly encourage you to become familiar with their privacy practices and to contact them if you have any questions about their respective privacy policies and practices.

Visitors Outside the United States

TheCircle.org LLC and the servers that make this site available worldwide are located in the United States. All matters relating to these sites are governed by the laws of the State of Ohio in the United States. Any information you provide will be transferred to the United States. By visiting our sites and submitting information, you authorize this transfer.

Security

TheCircle.org LLC uses secure server software (SSL) to process all website transactions. SSL encrypts information transmitted over the Internet, including personal data such as name and address. TheCircle.org LLC cannot warrant or guarantee the security of its servers, nor can it guarantee that information you supply will not be intercepted while being transmitted to TheCircle.org over the Internet. TheCircle.org places a priority on the security of personally identifiable information and we undertake reasonable security measures that comply with federal regulations to protect the data that resides on our servers.

TheCircle.org cannot definitively ensure that all of your personally identifiable information and communications will remain private and will never be disclosed in ways not otherwise described in this Policy. Therefore, although we maintain and make every effort to comply with industry privacy standards, we do not promise, nor should you expect, that your personally identifiable information or private communications will always remain private.

Contact

If you have questions concerning your membership or this privacy policy, please contact our wed administrator at admin@thecircle.org.

Or you can contact us by mail at:

Web Administration
TheCircle.org LLC.
39 1/2, E.Main Street
Suite 7
Ephrata, PA 17522

Updated February 2010