From The Forum SA
If you only read The Forum SA website, no more information is collected than is typically collected in server logs by web sites in general.
If you contribute to The Forum SA, you are publishing every word you post publicly. If you write something, assume that it will be retained forever. This includes articles, user pages, talk pages and forum posts. Some limited exceptions are described below.
Publishing on The Forum SA and public data
Simply visiting the web site does not expose your identity publicly (but see private logging below).
When you make any post in the forum or edit any page in the wiki, you are publishing a document. This is a public act, and you are identified publicly with that edit as its author.
Only registered members may make posts in the forum area and edit or publish a page in the wiki.
If you are logged in, you will be identified by your user name. This may be your real name if you so choose, or you may choose to publish under a pseudonym, whatever user name you selected when you created your account.
When using a user name, your IP address will not be available to the public except in cases of abuse, including vandalism of a wiki page by you or by another user with the same IP address. In all cases, your IP address will be stored on the wiki servers and can be seen by Wikimedia's server administrators and by users who have been granted "CheckUser" access. Your IP address, and its connection to any usernames that share it may be released under certain circumstances (see below).
Remember to log out or disconnect yourself after each session using a pseudonym on a shared computer, to avoid allowing others to use your identity.
The website will set a temporary session cookie (PHPSESSID) whenever you visit the site. If you do not intend to ever log in, you may deny this cookie, but you cannot log in without it. It will be deleted when you close your browser session.
More cookies may be set when you log in, to avoid typing in your user name (or optionally password) on your next visit. These last up to 30 days. You may clear these cookies by logging out after use if you are using a public machine and don't wish to expose your username to future users of the machine. (If so, clear the browser cache as well.)
Many aspects of The Forum SA's community interactions depend on the reputation and respect that is built up through a history of valued contributions. User passwords are the only guarantee of the integrity of a user's edit and post history. All users are encouraged to select strong passwords and to never share them. No one shall knowingly expose the password of another user to public release either directly or indirectly.
Every time you visit a web page, you send a lot of information to the web server. Most web servers routinely maintain access logs with a portion of this information, which can be used to get an overall picture of what pages are popular, what other sites link to this one, and what web browsers people are using. It is not the intention of The Forum SA to use this information to keep track of legitimate users.
Log data may be examined by developers in the course of solving technical problems and in tracking down badly-behaved web spiders that overwhelm the site. IP addresses of users, derived either from those logs or from records in the database are frequently used to correlate usernames and network addresses of edits in investigating abuse of the wiki, including the suspected use of malicious "sockpuppets" (duplicate accounts), vandalism, harassment of other users, or disruption of the forum or wiki.
Policy on release of data derived from page logs
It is the policy of The Forum SA that personally identifiable data collected in the server logs, or through records in the database via the CheckUser feature, may be released by the system administrators or users with CheckUser access, in the following situations:
- In response to a valid subpoena or other compulsory request from law enforcement
- With permission of the affected user
- To the leadership of The Forum SA, it's legal counsel, or it's designee, when necessary for investigation of abuse complaints.
- Where the information pertains to page views generated by a spider or bot and its dissemination is necessary to illustrate or resolve technical issues.
- Where the user has been vandalising articles or persistently behaving in a disruptive way, data may be released to assist in the targeting of IP blocks, or to assist in the formulation of a complaint to relevant Internet Service Providers
- Where it is reasonably necessary to protect the rights, property or safety of The Forum SA, its users or the public.
The Forum SA policy does not permit public distribution of such information under any circumstances, except as described above.
To try and bring you offers that are of interest to you, we have relationships with other companies that we allow to place ads on our web pages. As a result of your visit to our site, ad server companies may use information (not including your name, address, email address, or telephone number) about your visits to this and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. This may include collecting information such as your domain type, your IP address, and clickstream information. For further information, consult the privacy policies of:
Google, inc. http://www.google.com/privacy_ads.html
Sharing information with third parties
Except where otherwise specified, all text added to Wikimedia projects is available for reuse under the terms of the GFDL, except for Wikinews, where the text is available under a Creative Commons License.
The Forum SA will not sell or share private information, such as email addresses, with third parties, unless it is required by law to release the information.
Security of information
Whilst reasonable effort is made to ensure the security of private information, The Forum SA makes no guarantee against unauthorized access to any information you provide. This information may be available to anyone with access to the servers.
E-mail and mailing lists
You are required to provide a valid email address in order to register as a user at The Forum SA. A confirmation email will be sent to this email address with instructions as to how to confirm your registration. The registration is not completed until this confirmation process is completed.
You may enable other logged-in users to send email to you through the wiki and forum software. However, your address will not be revealed to them unless you respond.
This email address will also be used should you subscribe to any of the different areas within the site and to reset your password should you forget your password.
The email address may be used by The Forum SA to communicate with users on a wider scale, typically for newsletters and news on general site updates.
The Forum SA compiles its mailing list for distributing newsletters and news on site updates from the email information contained within the members' profiles. Should you wish to not receive this information, please ensure that the tickbox for Receive emails from Administrators is not ticked in your user options settings.
Data on users, such as the times at which they edited and the number of edits they have made are publicly available via "user contributions" lists, and in aggregated forms published by other users.
Removal of user accounts
Once created, user accounts will not be removed. It may be possible for a username to be changed by request to an Administrator. The Forum SA does not guarantee that a name will be changed on request.
A user account may be suspended, either temporarily or permanently, in the event of it being determined that the user is guilty of abuse, or that it is established that the email address associated with the user name is no longer valid.
Deletion of content
Removing text from Wikimedia projects does not permanently delete it. In normal articles, anyone can look at a previous version and see what was there. If an article is "deleted", any user with "administrator" access on the wiki, meaning almost anyone trusted not to abuse the deletion capability, can see what was deleted. Information can be permanently deleted by those people with access to the servers, but there is no guarantee this will happen except in response to legal action.